Back at the pier after our island tour we had about 45 minutes to walk around the small port town. That 45 minutes turned out to be about 15 more than we needed to see the small market, shops, restaurants, ever present jewelery/pearl stores and a small tourist area. A small market with local fruits and wares, very similar to the large market in Papeete, was open in the morning after we left the ship. Brian had taken the opportunity to take a quick look around and I had been hoping to catch my own visit upon our return, but unfortunately the market was closed in the afternoon.
Sure beats Costco!!
The Main Street
My goal was to get back to the ship in time to see the "Children of Raiatea" show at 5:00 PM, a goal definitely worth the effort. These kids entertained us with a wonderful traditional show and were very adept at local dance even at their young ages. One 3-year old girl in particular who was dancing up a storm on the stage brought a smile to everyone's face. For those wondering, this was indeed an audience participation show. We had good some sports in our audience and lots of smiling faces!
3 year old stealing the show!
After the show we enjoyed another gorgeous Sail Away followed by the Captain's Welcome Party (cocktails and a photo) in the Grand Salon and then dinner at L'Etoile with a whole new group of friends. Once again we seemed to be one of the last tables to leave the restaurant as we laughed and chatted our way through the delicious meal. Ostrich was on the menu and although I was a bit skeptical about trying it, I'm very glad I took the opportunity to taste this exotic meat. What an unexpectedly tender and tasty cut. Definitely give it a shot if you have the chance!
Susie & I enjoying our leis and pre-dinner cocktails!
Just a note: As the Captain's Greeting was held this evening people dressed just a bit finer. Plenty of men still in tropical shirts and slacks, but this was the one night that we glimpsed a few jackets and ties. Ladies had an array of dresses, nothing nearing a cocktail dress, but a few long simple dresses and some nicer outfits. The attire this this evening was step up over most other nights. For anyone interested, there is a photographer every night outside L'Etoile taking photos for purchase. Ryan did a nice job capturing some memorable shots that we couldn't resist taking home!
Sail Away Views...