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Haamene and Tapuamu
We stayed for two nights in Haamene Bay, home of Conni's favorite village on the island. She thinks that it's the most beautiful and it probably is. They have the best restaurant in the Leeward Islands, the Taha'a Maitai, and a great grocery store.
To make a point about the store in Haamene, here's the baguette area. Neat and inviting!
US$2 for a tuna head? I guess it's for fish stock.
I know that this is an odd photo, but it's a package of fries in 8 languages. This is a company that thinks ahead!
Wings at anchor in Haamene Bay.
I tried to align the roof peak with the mountain peak, but it is odd that they're so similar. I wonder if it were planned?
I have no idea what this means, but it's Spiderman!
These guys could be anywhere in the world! They are in school and saw me taking photos. Immediately, they called to me and posed.
Lovely Conni walks back to the dinghy dock. Ours is the only one there.
As I mentioned, Conni chose to sit inside at Taha'a Maitai, the wonderful restaurant. I can't say enough about the restaurant or its owner: they are the kind of place and sentiment that we love.
The creamy vanilla sauce on a slab of Wahoo, a rice pile, and veggie gratin. All were superbly prepared with freshest materials, and served with elegance. The Wahoo reminded us both of swordfish, being dense and flavorful.
Hard to see, I know, but the guy's kite is visible at right. He is riding a foiling board, powered by a kite!
This is NOT what a boater wants to see! The large inter-island freighter was bearing down on us and I had to evade quickly. What, he didn't see us?
The Apetahi Express thunders past us in the Taha'a/Raiatea lagoon.
Since we're headed northward on the west side of Taha'a, Bora Bora is in view. It's unmistakable.
Our favorite rhum distillery, Pari Pari in Tapuamu Bay. It's tiny but has gained a big reputation. It's the brainchild of the owner, who's resurrected the unique sugar cane varieties and low-impact techniques.
Inside the building, this is the sales area. There's not much, but it's all handmade by locals or at the distillery.
This is the distillery and the actual still, a beautiful stainless and bronze contraption made in Germany. Barrels for aging are stacked against the wall.
After tasting and purchasing, we took a walk along the belt road.
The pink house is beside the entrance to a wetland area. It's more modern than most.
The pink house is at left, and the tide is rapidly departing the wetland valley.
From the road, here's the anchorage. Wings is in the middle, and the unmistakable Bora Bora is behind.
Along another bridge over a small stream, Lovely Conni stops to gaze at the beauty.
This is a copra drier using solar to dry the coconut meat. Copra used to be the major money crop and almost every house had one or more of these. This is the first one in use that we've seen in years. A rooster is enjoying the insects in the drying copra.
Sometimes, the choices by locals are simply not understandable. This guy has pulled the wheels and doors from his old panel van and filled it with old coconuts. I just cannot imagine why.
The view of Bora Bora from our cockpit.
As we returned to Wings from shore, Conni snapped this photo.
The HUGE Apetahi Express departs the Tapuamu dock under duress. It's very fast and the catamaran's tunnel is enormous, too.
The Apetahi Express, the huge catamaran at left, was still at the Tapuamu dock and the new Vodafone boat wanted in. After some arm waving and horn blasts, the Express departed and the Vodafone docked. Sheesh, what about a radio beforehand?
The red boat is a ROLO or "roll on, roll off" design and their door is in their stern. They must dock stern-to, as you can see here. It's a combination vessel, able to carry vehicles, cargo, and passengers.
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