Saturday, October 16, 2010


DAY 21 We wake to a stormy morning, but the winds are not high enough to cancel the tendering to Avarua on Rarotonga. We get to the King’s Room for breakfast just before 9. Since it is windy and rainy, we decide to postpone the snorkel trip until the afternoon in hopes the weather will clear. About 10 we go down to deck "A" and get in line with tender group "53" for the next tender. The perk of priority tendering for suite guests is well worth it on this tender port intensive itinerary!

On shore we walk along the sea wall to the main part of the village about a mile from the ship, ducking into a number of little shops along the way.

 Rain showers are passing through at regular intervals so we stay damp. We check out all the little pearl shops, dress shops and food shops along the way. Carolyn picks up a T-shirt and a couple of little gifts and drools over the beautiful pearls, both the Tahitian black pearls, which we will see more of at the next stops, and the South Seas Golden and White Pearls from the waters around Australia and New Zealand. The golden South Seas pearls are considered the most rare of all the pearls. Last year in Australia, Carolyn bought beautiful large South Seas Golden Pearl and had it mounted into a pendant in Bangkok. Now she would love to find a strand of the golden pearls to wear it on. She sees several very nice strands and after coming to the conclusion that we may not be back this way any time soon, she buys a very nice baroque strand.

About noon we head back to the pier

and find a taxi driver giving island tours for $10 pp if he can get 6 people for his van. The skies have lifted a bit, so with two other couples, we enjoy the drive. As it turns out, the driver stops at the beach we were planning visit and we get a chance at a little beach combing. It is still very cloudy, windy and the water is cool and really choppy, not at all favorable for snorkeling.

Rarotonga is a very clean island with a mountainous center which is in the clouds today. The people live right on the shore line and the yards are filled with beautiful flowers and the graves of the ancestors!

It has started raining when we get back to the pier in Avarua at 2:30. There is a tender waiting so we make a dash for it.

On board we clean up, put on dry clothes and order room service. The rest of the afternoon is spent reading and watching a movie in the room. As we are going to dinner the Captain announces that we should be careful moving around the ship as it is going to be a little rough. The winds are blowing at 50mph with high seas. Barf bags have been placed at all the elevators...always a bad sign. By the time dinner is over the ship is moving quite a bit and making us very sleepy! After checking out the promenade and top deck for sea spray and wind, of which there is plenty, we are off to bed.

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