October 5, 2018

Tahiti (Pape’ete & Moorea) and American Samoa (Pago Pago)

Well after 5 days from Hawaii we finally arrived in Pepe’ete Tahiti. Both islands we visited were former French colonies. This is definitely a disadvantage for us since most people speak French. guess we’ll have to use the Google translator. On Pepe’ete we did not take any tours and decided to tour the downtown area. I was in search of a famous Tahitian Pearl. They are rated by the body color and sheen of the pearl. The most expensive tend to be more dark green in color with a purple overtone. Of course I dragged my husband all over the town but by the end of the day we found the perfect one. We stopped at the local market to see all the various things they had for sale from beautiful flowers, unusual fruits to souvenirs. While we were out shopping we decided to stop at a café on the wharf for a quick bite to eat. We split a large salad and had 2 beers apiece. The bill came to $56 and we about fell out of our chairs. Be prepared if you plan on vacationing in French Polynesian make sure you take lots of money since everything there was expensive by our standards. 

Overnight we sailed to Moorea. When I think of Tahiti this is it. As I looked out our balcony this morning it was the most magical green across the mountains. We took of tour of the entire island with a stop at a pineapple farm to see how they actually grew. They almost look like an artichoke when they first flower. Then we went up to the Belvedere look-out point and from there you could see all the way to the Cook’s Bay, fantastic views of Mount Mouaroa and the lush vegetation of Opunohu Valley. We both enjoyed the entire day since the scenery was so beautiful.

Out to sea again for 2 days and then arrived at Pago Pago. It is actually pronounce Pango Pango by the natives. Every since I worked for NOAA I knew we had offices there and thought wouldn’t that be something if I could ever visit there. Well my wish came true. I found out where the NOAA offices were in town and went there to visit the staff. They were very surprised to have someone visit that worked at Headquarters, but of course I told I had just retired that’s how I could visit. Most of them were from Hawaii originally and said they absolutely loved living there. We also visited the Papahanaumokuakea Marine Sanctuary Monument visitor center. There we watched a NOAA movie about the sanctuary and the mission to preserve the ocean environment. It was awesome!

Well not half way through the cruise and we are in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It is over 18,000 feet deep. Had a discussion today at lunch about whether  there  were any pirates out here. First of all where in the hell would they come from when we are miles from any land and secondly there are over 2600 hundred people on this cruise. I would hope at least a few of them could overpower the Pirates argghh.

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