Cook Islands


Day 13

Just Chillin

I had yogurt and fruit for breakfast this morning and then bandaided my heels so I could ride over to the waterfall to take some photos.
I made it through the mud ok, I’m an expert now! When I got there, the first thing I did was put mosquito repellant on. I met a German tourist named Tina and she didn’t have any insect repellant so I shared mine with her otherwise she would have been eaten alive!

From there I went over to Muri beach. I was pretty hungry so I went to The Mooring Cafe again and got a “FOB” which was crumbed fish, salad and lime mayo in freshly baked bread that was pretty similar to Turkish bread - really tasty!

During lunch I bumped in to Jack, the scuba diving instructor and his diving mate Zach. This Zach turned out to be the person Kelly was staying with and I was actually on the party bus with him too. I’m pretty sure this was also the guy that was caused that person at my hotel to start yelling in the middle of the night a few days ago. I had lunch with them and then went to KiteSUP to get my refund.

As I was parking my scooter out the front, I saw Ash from KiteSUP and he invited me to the beach for a beer with them, but I went inside to get my refund sorted first.
I almost used my refund to get the rain jacket from KiteSUP, but they only had XL’s in men’s and the rest were women’s so they refunded to my credit card.

After that was sorted I went down to the beach and hung out there for the rest of the afternoon. They were having lunch and beers and were happy for me to join them. I didn’t eat because I knew I was going to have a big dinner tonight at Coco putt (which I had already booked from the hotel), but I had a few beers with them.

They had three girls arrive today for their kite retreat. Two Aussies and one Kiwi. We were all drinking and telling stories, it was a really fun afternoon! I kind of wished I was doing the retreat with them, but it was for women only. However there is a bigger retreat next year in August where they go to Aitutaki for most of it and it sounds like a lot of fun! Ash also said to let him know because he often buys flights from Australia to Rarotonga in a group to get a discount. I’m going to keep my eye on this! He also suggested to try Kite Republic in Melbourne if I want to continue with the lessons, he knows the guy that runs it and says it’s really good.

After spending most of the afternoon there and meeting some really cool people, I rode back to the hotel, dumped my stuff and headed to Coco Putt. There was no one at the door to direct me to my seat or to hand out golf clubs, but people where just taking their own clubs, so I grabbed a club, ball and scorecard and went for a round. Because I was by myself, a few families with little kids let me go ahead of them otherwise I’d be waiting forever!

Just as I was finishing up, the host announced that dinner would be served soon, so we should get to our seats. It looked like people were assigned tables, so I asked him about my reservation and he introduced me to some of his friends at the front table right in front of the stage. The band came on and played a few songs, they mainly did covers of old songs and they were pretty good. The band consisted of a lead singer who also played guitar, a lead guitarist who was pretty awesome and made some pretty technical solos look effortless and a drummer who had a tambourine strapped to his foot and played a box drum with a symbol.

After a couple of songs, the band took a break and they started getting one table at a time to help themselves from the buffet. This restaurant was recommended to me by quite a lot of people that I spoke to here and I can see why, there was a lot of really tasty food including the favorites of BBQ meat, potato salad, fish in coconut cream, pasta salad and rice just to name a few. I filled a massive plate and got myself a beer.
By the end of that I was really full!

The band started their next set with the pulp fiction song and that lead guitarist showed off his shredding skills. Apparently he has been offered to travel around the world playing guitar, but doesn’t want to leave the island - he was really talented!

Next came dessert and there were home made cakes and ice cream but I was so full, I skipped dessert. After their next set, the band got our host, the restaurant owner to join them for a song, turns out the owner was pretty good on harmonica!

After that, the owner made a special request, he said there was an amazing artist in the restaurant as a guest and pleaded for her to come up on stage and play a song or two. Her name was Kura Happ and her first song was amazing, her voice was incredible! The second song was a slower one, but still pretty good and I managed to record that one!

The band started packing up and I hung around and chatted to the other people at my table for a bit before heading off. It had been a great night and I hadn’t even payed for it yet, so I asked there owner and he said just pay at the bar. There were no bills, no one at the door, this is just another demonstration of the laid back island culture here.

A fun game of mini golf, huge serving of tasty food, live entertainment with surprise guests and an entertaining host all for $35! It was a really good night.

As I was leaving, the sky was completely clear of clouds and the stars looked amazing! Out here there aren’t many lights to wreck the view, unlike at home. When I got back to the hotel, I grabbed my camera, tripod and a chair and headed out to the beach. Just as I got through the front door with the chair, a little kitten came through the garden and jumped on it. It was pretty cute, I gave it a bit of a pat, but then it didn’t want to move, so I started carrying the chair with the cat on it and almost got to the beach before it jumped off and went to hide.

There was barely any wind and no one around. I setup my camera, took a few shots and then set it up to take a stack of photos for an attempt at a star trail shot. Sitting on the beach at night, looking at the crystal clear sky with millions of twinkling stars, listening to the waves crashing against the reef was the perfect was to finish off the most relaxing day I’ve had all trip!
Even though I didn’t necessarily accomplish much, this was one of the favourite days so far - very chilled.