Andrew & Angelica - Round The World 2014 travel blog

Ootu Beach

Up Maungapu


Early in the morning several hours before sunrise the local population of cockerels started to crow. One seemed to be almost under our hut but I can't say this bothered us as we have kept cockerels in the past and we have learned to ignore it. We were told a story today by Linda who we met in Rarotonga and now again here. She went to the market and asked for chicken but they didn't have any but was told she should just help herself to one of of the wild ones. It seems they are all regarded as wild and belong to no one in particular. There are no dogs on this island as they were banned after one seriously bit a child of some dignitary.

After a lovely breakfast including fruits of the season, the bikes we have hired were delivered. Unfortunately they were the last two Rino's had available at that seems the only place on the island that we could get them. The tyres were so bald that the thread casing was showing through, the gears didn't work and the saddle wouldn't go high enough. Gel's had peddles that almost fell off and I think the bottom bracket was about to break so when we called at their base a couple of miles down the road they managed to change it for a slightly better bike. I was quite sure we would get a puncture before the end of the day but somehow we managed to avoid that fate.

We cycled the 9km or so down the island , round the south end and back up the east side. It is fascinating mix of old abandoned single-storied houses and some newer part built properties that never seem to be finished plus of course the houses that are currently being lived in. A lot of people here keep goats although we saw a few tethered pigs. We then went along side the runway and down to Ootu Beach where we had lunch at Koru cafe and then had a swim in the turquoise blue waters of the lagoon. It was a real struggle to ride the bike and while the island itself was interesting I can't say I enjoyed the ride. On the way back to Paradise Cove we took in the highest point, Maungapu, at 124 metres. Some of the roads are unmade up and therefore required effort to pedal. Anything even slightly uphill and I found it easier to get off and walk.

In the evening we ate again at the Coconut Shack and were joined at our table by a a young couple from New Zealand that knew the Ghauis. Will Reynolds came from family that originated in Kenya so Gel and he compared notes on the families that they both knew. It is a small world!

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