The family gather at Sydney Airport
On Friday, May 4th
at 4-30am Fletcher and I were in a taxi on our way to the airport. This was the start of our family holiday to the Cook Islands. 2018 is a significant year for us. Fletcher has just turned 70, I will reach that milestone in September and then on October 11th
we will celebrate our 50th
Wedding Anniversary. When asked how we wanted to celebrate this auspicious occasion our response was to go with the whole family for a week’s holiday somewhere. After much discussion we suggested the Cook Islands and, in particular , Muri Beach and so, a suitable week when everyone was able to go, was decided on and bookings duly made.
We met up with Lucy, Rowan and Emilie and Scarlett, and Tracey and Sam at Adelaide airport where we boarded a Virgin flight to Sydney. In Sydney, the Canberra branch of the family, Melissa, James, Sebastian. Jude and Zachary, had driven down the night before and we met them in the departure lounge. So, our three children, their respective partners and our five grandchildren all left Sydney on our Virgin flight to Auckland, where after a 50 minute stop, we then continued on
Fletcher on Muri Beach
the next flight to Rarotonga.
We landed in Raro at about 11pm, After a visit to the duty free, we went through Customs and then out to find our hire cars. Getting thirteen people and luggage into two 7- seater cars was “fun” but was done pretty efficiently. We headed off on the one main road which runs all around the island in the drizzly rain and humid fogginess. Fletcher drove the first car as he is familiar with the island having been here many times with Rowan piloting the second. It took about 20 minutes or so to reach the Manea Beach Villas, situated more than half way around. Bu this time it was after midnight, local time, but we found our 3 villas waiting with the keys under the mats. They are very comfortable. Lucy and family are sharing a 3 bedroom villa with Sam and Tracey while the McEwen/Connor family have their own. Fletcher and I are very comfortable in our one bedroom one equipped with a fully stacked kitchen, bathroom and bedroom with king-size bed.
The next morning was Friday again as we had crossed the International Date Line. After a leisurely morning some
The view from our deck
of us drove into Avarura, the main town, to stock up on breakfast supplies and other essentials for the week. Fletcher and I had had a lovely stroll along the beach, only mildly spoiled but the rain showers which eventually drenched us. The Muri lagoon is a beautiful spot. It is shallow so very safe and has several small islands in it. It is protected by the outer reef so is still and calm. The sand is golden and several resorts front onto it. Our place has a view of the lagoon and Lucy’s villa looks out over it. We also have a pool, virtually to ourselves as there are only two other small villas occupied. We then all convened at the Sandals and Barefoot restaurant, right on the beach at the nearby Pacific Resort. Here we had a great lunch, enjoying the activities of the beach and the food which was delicious. The afternoon was spent by various activities Some of the family, mainly younger members, were kayaking and swimming while the rest of us enjoyed each other’s company watching the others. It was warm with occasional rain showers, but very relaxing.
We reconvened at 6 and after
Our villa at Manea Beach Villas
predinner drinks again walked along the beach to Sails Restaurant. I had rung as a table for 13 is not always readily available, so they fitted us in at 7-30pm. Again, we all had delicious food with live entertainment at reasonable prices. Everyone is super friendly here and it is easy to just relax and go with the flow. The walk home along the beach in the dark, using our phone’s as torches was quite an adventure and the young ones thoroughly enjoyed it. A great start to the week!
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