|The fruit carrying races in Papeete--the largest bundles weighed 55 kg|
I really thought Tahiti would be one of those get stuff done, get out kind of stops. I never heard many raves about the place. Heck, even the tourism PR staff seemed surprised that I wanted to learn more about the island—it seems that Mo’orea and Bora Bora are the typical places that tourists flock too.
|fire dancing in the park|
But honestly, I love the place. Papeete is easy to manage and incredibly friendly and the landscape (if you get yourself out of the city and get exploring) is stunning in its diversity. And as we get ready to go today I’m grateful for what we’ve seen and done but (probably like everywhere we’ve been…) I can’t help but wish we’d seen more: Like the orange groves high on a plateau that Captain Cook had planted to help rid sailors of scurvy and later were exported to the US (before the California and Florida groves were even imagined), or the central Papenoo Valley with its volcanic crater, waterfalls and ancient Marae (where many Tahitians can trace their ancestry).
There is never enough time to see everything and do all we’d like. When were lucky we get to intersect with local people at the edges of their culture and community before we move on—but so often we just get to catch glimpses.
And the glimpses are enticing.