(Still) Rarotonga, Cook Islands.

Well, we have gone to Aitutaki and come back. I must say that I did enjoy it, although after a few days it got a bit boring. There’s only so much fun in the sun that a human being can handle…and besides that there’s not much more to do!

Sunny Beach Lodge turned out to be very nice; it wasn’t posh or ultra-modern, but it was in full working order and CLEAN! I saw only a few spiders and the room we stayed in had its own gecko. He was so cute…I named him”Dude” because he was so small
and adorable. Sometimes he would hide for a good part of the day and then show himself towards night-time. Othertimes I would see him in the morning when I would wake up and he would keep me company for an hour or so, and then disappear…he stayed up on the ceiling (I don’t think that he ever got within arm’s reach).

One morning I woke up to find Dude in the kitchen, as usual, along with another thing…at first I thought he might be a cockroach, but he was MUCH too small and dainty. As I’ve said before, the roaches here are super-sized, and this thing was about the size of a Californian cockroach (maybe an inch or two?). However, I got up on a chair and took a closer look and decided that he wasn’t a roach but maybe a pincher bug or beetle of some sort. Anyhow, I did not want him in the kitchen and so I ran into the living room area to get my steel-soled Rockports so that I could give him a good wack. When I got back, he was making a bee-line for Dude!!! I am NOT kidding. When I got back up on the chair he stopped (because he knew that I knew what he was up to) and at this point I couldn’t reach him anymore. I got back down and put the shoe nearby so that as soon as he was within reach I could kill him. The second I got down he started running at Dude again! At this point, the little gecko (he was so cute) turned him tiny head towards the ugly old bug and just gave him a look…he was quite helpless. I grabbed the chair again and got really close to them both and the bug stopped and turned around and went back higher towards the ceiling (away from both me and Dude). I was livid. I really cannot believe that he was about to attack him! And Dude is so small that he really could not fight him off….(a few days later I saw another Gecko in the house and he was a bigger size, not so delicate. He was also a weird skin-fleshy color that was a bit unsettling, but he was still cute). Casey woke up about ten minutes later and I complained to him about the bug and asked him to kill it…it took a bit for the bug to come closer to us (and I warned Casey that the bug was wiley and might try to get away) but when he did Casey (Great White Hunter that he is) smashed him and then examined the remains (checking out the kill). Yuck.

Dude was safe. I took a picture of him with the zoom lense so when we are able to put up pictures on the site you will be able to see what he looks like.

Um, yes, there are no dogs on Aitutaki, only a shocking amount of roosters/chickens and lambs and some cats and,of course, the ever-popular king-sized cockroach. We had been warned about the skeeters, but we didn’t notice any more than on “Raro.” To be sure, I have been using an unhealthy amount of insect repellent and I wouldn’t be surprised if I get foot cancer when I get older…I had tons of bites on my feet from our stay up in the hills of Raro. The Backpackers place was nice but (after the rain) there were lots of mosquitoes and I am definitely a juicy meal to them…Casey, too, got lots of bites. My feet have little skeeter-bite marks on them. They are recovering, but slowly. However, I am now very militant about spraying my exposed parts with DEET! I just can’t get any more bites. Raro has been home to dengue fever and so they warn that you should “take care” not to get bites! There isn’t an outbreak right now, but they had a major one in 1997 and still have a warning up at the airport on how to prevent it.

We are both really brown. We did this lovely lagoon tour on Tuesday and we spent hours and hours in the sun and Casey got burned, and I got very, very toasty. I actually have a tan line from my swim suit (people who know me will know how surprising this is). We stayed inside most of the day on Wednesday but on Thursday went swimming again, and on Saturday took our rented bikes half way around the island to another beach (by the Pearl Resort) and went swimming again, and again added to our darkness. Casey looks very golden and the hairs on his arms are turning blond.

Okay, I will stop for now and let Casey write (we can’t log in at the same time). We are now staying at the Kii Kii Motel (about a twnety minute walk out of Avarua) and it is okay…it’s a little dirty (it looks as if they didn’t sweep the floor before we came) and my spider radar (spi-dar) is definitely up in that place. I already killed one that was running across the bed (it was heading for our bags). I assume I will be killing more…but, it’s better than CI Lodge, it has a TV and telephone (out going calls only). It’s not really dirty, but it does need a thorough going over with the Lysol and a vacuum. I would do it, too, if I had the tools.

Only, at Sunny Beach there weren’t any laundry machines and no public ones on the island so we had to wash by hand. My hands are quite raw right now (I like hot water) and so I think my cleaning days are on hold for awhile.