Thursday, June 23, 2011

2011 - NZ To SF - Day 41

Day 41: (23 June 2011):
- After breakfast: walk down to beach to find path to summit. See only path leading to houses. Then too lazy to ask. Lie on hammock under pandanus canopy & think about life & people. Was told sunset on peak was very beautiful by person I met at Gold Coast.
- For some reason, we were missed by the good-bye song. Waving from shore.
- Chat with French on boat. He gave me $5 to buy ice cream when they do not have change for $50.
- Met Canadian in Fiji for 3 weeks. 2nd to meet not coming through Aus. or NZ.
- Sail into the group of islands around Blue Lagoon. Apparently a famous Brooke Shields movie of the same name was shot here?
- Gold Coast was pretty much the last stop. Was getting worried & asked a few times.
- Met couple I saw at Taufua in Samoa.
- Met older women who visited Raro & Aitutaki & Tanu & Taufua.
- More scrum of boats. See Blue Lagoon Beach with large vessels & private yatchs.
- Light blue reefs. Many people think is beautiful, but nothing compared to Aitutaki.
- Fast & long-ish boat transfer to other side of island.
- Choppy. Looks like seagrass.
- 5 on boat.
- Ants like open wounds. Bite.
- Dorm has only 3 beds. Ensuite bathroom: no sink. Thatched roof, rope holding roof together.
- Show us big pig. Later see poop near dorms, from pigs?
- Empty, but meet couple who told me most people @ Blue Lagoon Beach.
- Walk along beach. Left: stop @ rocks before a corner. Met person who say used to be 4 hostels, now only 1. "No money.! Hostel rented by some org.
- Right: Climb over some volcanic rocks & boulders (some huge & look loose). Look around corner: cove with swampy mangroves(?).
- Walk back, notice sand contains many small shell rings. How formed? Think of shell money, then decide make a string of rings to keep me occupied. This is after sitting & watching the sea for a long time.
- Try find coconut, not much.
- Watch fish jumping.
- Sit & stoop on beach stringing shells until dark.
- In middle, take a break with Welsh to Lo's Tea House down beach: owned by person who runs hostel. Chocolate cake.
- Dinner included chunks of fish, including fins, tail, head. Fresh caught? Lots of geckos eating insects. Also included crab: two people saw large crabs last night in kitchen, apparently very large mud crabs. Westeners not ver happy with fish & crabs. Funny-tasting water. Other jug not a problem. Cleaning fluid taste.
- Drink a beer & chat.
- Beer can smell like fish.
- Back in room: I write under small lamp. Girls watch 1/2 of Rock 'n' Roller on laptop before bed.
- Very dark after turning lights out.

Photos available at: http://mandarinmanmarktravelbriefs.blogspot.com/