Thursday, April 25, 2013

Landed!

Three airports, two planes and fifteen hours. We have finally landed in Rarotonga, Cook Islands. Located just three and a half hours East of New Zealand, we are in unchartered territory and it looks like it. The airport is a total of two buildings connected by a roof. You step off the plane onto a TARMAC! We make it through customs (they let us in!), head past Jake playing the ukulele, greeting incoming planes like he has for thirty-odd years, and head out into the great wide-openess.

Into the rattiest minivan I have ever stepped foot in. With no air-conditioning. Oh, to backtrack, it is 7:30 in the morning and we have been in that last airplane for nine and a half hours (although they do serve alcohol - for FREE - see HERE). We were greeted with a fragrant lei and our luggage is stuffed in this van (a Mazda, I think. For some odd reason the memory didn't stick).

We drive halfway around the island in this van that I'm sure is going to break down any minute. This guy is driving like a bat out of tarnation ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THE ROAD!! He's passing scooters with little old ladies on them, scooters with teenagers talking on their cell phones and scooters with adults driving and five year olds hanging on the back of the parent's shirt. Nobody's flipping him off. Nobody's angry at being passed. And nobody's getting run over. Did I mention that not ONE of those scooter occupants was wearing a helmet? Not a single one.

We do survive the van ride and make it to our bungalow (literally, a free standing one bedroom building all our own) and check in at the Palm Grove. After unstrapping ourselves from our luggage, we break out the shorts (they were packed on top in the smartest last-minute packing move I've made) and flip flops and head out to explore.

I'm not sure it can get ANY better than this!

Oh, but it does...

And we're there.

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