Tuesday, 8 October 2013

To remove confusion - maybe

It seems my blogs may not have been coming through in chronological order, because emails and comments received are sometimes out of step with where I am and what I have been doing. So ... I am now on the island Nuku Hiva where I landed first by plane over a week ago before flying off within hours to another island Hiva Oa. This island Nuku Hiva is my last island, and I will leave it permanently this Thurs afternoon (Friday afternoon eastern Oz time). Previously I had flown from Nuku Hiva for an airport stopover on the island of Ua Huka (to be weighed), before landing on the island of Hiva Oa. The main town there was Atuona and this is where I visited Gauguin's tomb and stood outside the still functioning colonial store that Gauguin frequented. From the port of Atuona I travelled by speedboat across rough seas to the island of Tahuata. I spent 2 nights here, toured parts of the island and saw an amazing petroglyph hidden in the bush, always ate and were connected to a local family, and slept across from the beach. Then I got onto the yacht for the first time, and we sailed (or rather I was sailed) to the next island named Uo Poa. I spent 2 nights based at Ua Poa but sleeping on the boat. This island was where I met the vivacious english teacher and her drop dead gorgeous husband, and had a road trip to a couple of small villages including watching some traditional wood carving men. Next I was sailed to this last island of Nuku Hiva. I arrived in the bay/harbour/township of Tai O Hae and this is the only place I have been so far, excepting the walk up into the bush to see a pre european traditional village remnant and recreation. This trip means I have been on and seen something of the 5 out of 6 inhabited islands of the many in the Marquesas. I have seen and experienced the real and authentic. My capitaine and guide Philip clearly met his brief. Since becoming a 'tourist' here by staying in a hotel and not being immersed in French speaking people, the relative isolation has shown me how rich the earlier experiences have been. I have told Philip that I count this as a success. Tomorrow, my last adventuring day will see me on the road with Philip showing me extradinary things inland, and having a lobster lunch at the famed Yvonne's restaurant. Forgetting a few unpleasant hours, this holiday has been a great pleasure and privilege.

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