Sunday, July 26, 2009

That's Tahiti

On Thursday Brian and I drove up the windward (that's the eastern edge) side of Tahiti in the rental car. We needed to return it and Brian thought it would be nice to to see the other side of the island. WE stopped next to a waterfall for a picnic then stopped later and walked a few minutes to see three waterfalls clustered near each other. Then, on to Tahiti, we bought a few groceries, did a couple other errands and dropped the car off at the airport. We waited at the correct bus stop (we'd asked a few different people) and kept our heads craned to the left so as not to miss the approach of the bus back to Teahupoo. "Brian, what does that say?" I said quickly as I jumped to my feet. "Teahupoo,' he said as we started waving down the bus driver. The driver slowed briefly, made eye contact with Brian, and then kept on driving by. "What!"
So we started hitch hiking.
The French gal who picked us up laughed when we told her the story, "That's the way it is in Tahiti." When she dropped us off a few miles later, she gave us her cell phone to call in case we couldn't get a ride the hour and a half down to Teahupoo before the sun set in half an hour. We could sleep at her place if necessary. I started silently asking God for a non-creepy person willing to take us all the way. Less than five minutes later, Pamela, a Tahitian woman who spoke almost no English picked us up. She was on her way home to Vairao, only a few minutes from Teahupoo. It was a quiet, comfortable drive and I was grateful the whole way as it was rainy and dark. That also is how it is in Tahiti.
Yesterday, we talked with Bonn, another sailor who'd had his teenage sons visiting him for two weeks. He said they had been handing out surf stickers to some of the local kids one day. They went back the next day to give out more stickers and the kids had brought them two pearls as a gift. That also is how it is in Tahiti.

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