Rarotonga Holiday 2

 Hee hee...
Spot the Sand Crab

My lovely Rarotongan holiday continues. I've done more walking, plus some swimming. And I've driven round the island quite a few times - as one does! I'm fascinated by the abundance of roosters and hens, which the locals call 'wild chickens'.

Monday 4th July

It's been a bit of a beach day, driving around the island checking on wind and sea conditions - big surf breaking on the reef, making the lagoon water cloudy. Small things and small minds - I enjoyed watching the pale-as-sand crabs charging around in and out of their holes. I saw smallish shells moving very slowly - these had hermit crabs inside. The five-year-old inside me now has a squillion silly questions about crabs.

Concerning Hermit Crabs

For example, when exactly does a hermit crab know it's time to upsize his shell? I'm thinking of the parallel with repotting plants here. Hermit crabs can become root-bound? Hmm...

 A beautiful peachy pink colour.
Torch Ginger

We had lunch at the tropical gardens cafe at Maire Nui. My camera is full of flowers and shrubs, my notebook has scribbly descriptions and drawings, for identification thereof. For example, the 'yellow and green spiky thing' is a Pandanus and 'the red and green things' are Ti Leaf. Perhaps this explains why I cannot write well about tropical plants...

Rarotonga's Wild Chickens

On Holiday...

Now we are home and Non-Gardening Partner, a man truly on holiday, is swinging on the verandah hammock. Where's east? I ask him. He points precisely half-way between the banana palm and the concrete power pole. It's nicely noisy with the rolling surf and the blustery wind in the coconut palms. Wild chickens (AKA a rooster and hens) and Indian Myna birds are again poking around on the lawn.

Happy Birthday!

It's Son-In-Law's birthday, so the day finishes with a food celebration - Salt Dough Wrapped Lamb, Boulangere Potatoes with Mint Aioli, and Salad Greens. Happy Birthday!

Tuesday 5th July

Hee hee - woken up by a lawn mower and a whipper-snipper. I am reading and rereading my important book, entitled Rarotonga's Mountain Tracks and Plants, because we are going to follow another shorter track today. I may not, however, scale the '20 metre rock cliff with safety equipment' at the very top of the walk, out of respect for my knees, which don't bend enough.


Lovely! NGP and I sat underneath the finale cliff on the forest walk, mosquito free, watching the fairy terns flying up and around us, enjoying a lovely cool breeze. There is so much glossy green vegetation around, and again great views out to the other mountain ridges. I am recognising more trees (like the Nei Nei) and plants (like the Tangle Ferns, beautifully named).

 The destination is the hump above the cliffs.
Raemaru Track Walk

After descending we found a nearby beach and swam around with a few nosy fish. Then we had our evening meal at Trader Jack's and watched the sunset as a group of single vaka paddlers came in. Trader Jack's pale ginger cat sat on my lap - nice! No scrabble tonight - the others have taken themselves off to the movie Transformers. I'm staying home to read up about more of the walking tracks.

Wednesday 6th July

Ha! We are off on bicycles to find the police station (NGP needs a local driving license) and the book store (I need my own copy of the important book). My pale skin is finding these sunny days a little difficult, even after copious sloppings of sunblock. My fingers are a bit sunburnt! Aargh!

 Decisions for the Head Gardener on holiday.
Beach or Mountains?


Another great day, with some quality beach time. Not so much swimming, but building a giant sand-mountain with ridges and cliffs, a little hut by a tarn, gorges and streams, and a swampy lake further down near the saddle. Ah me - distant memories of the seven-year-old Moosey playing in the building sand with her Dinky toys (little cars). My favourite was the green one... The tide was right out so the beach was still and crabless.

 Different book, perhaps?
Spot the Difference - NGP on Holiday

One of those rather personal holiday moments - I asked Non-Gardening Partner what he's enjoyed the most about his tropical holiday so far. Oh dear... It's Daughter of Moosey's cooking! I suspect the pancakes with maple syrup for breakfast. Memo to self - on return, serve pancakes for breakfast before asking him to build the tree house, hee hee...