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    Monday, June 23, 2008

    Tahiti Here We Come

    We are just home from Tahiti…9 days in Paradise.
    Our first dinner at home it had to be vegetables. We ate a lot of protein and bread in Tahiti…lovely as it was I felt we needed a little vege dish.
    This is so simple but tasty.

    Cauliflower and Mushroom Bake
    1 cauliflower stripped of leaves kept whole but core out.
    2 tablespoons butter
    4 large mushrooms chopped
    1 shallot chopped
    Slosh white wine
    Sea salt and freshly ground black freshly ground black pepper
    2 tablespoons flour
    2-3 sprigs of thyme
    Cauliflower liquor
    Frozen peas
    1 red chilli finely chopped (optional)
    Grated cheese

    Steam cauliflower
    Place into casserole dish
    Reserve liquor

    Melt butter add mushrooms
    Saute till tender add shallots
    Cook 3-4 minutes
    Add white wine.
    Boil and reduce till it is absorbed
    Add flour and cook for another 2-3 minutes
    Add liquor and enough milk to make a sauce
    The consistency of pouring cream

    Add peas and chilli

    Pour over cauliflower

    Cover with grated cheese and bake 180C about 25 minutes
    Just what we needed
    Comfort food.

    “So now are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin.”

    We decided on the spur of the moment to join our friends Sheryl and Michael in Moorea.
    We managed to get a good fare and we spent the next few days organizing our trip.

    About 3pm on the day before we left I decided to grab all the documents to put in my travel wallet.

    Opened up my passport
    Quelle domage…it expired yesterday.I urgently rang my trusty Travel Agent and good friend Tony Rogers click here for information about his travel agency Travel Managers

    “Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus” the famous quote from the editorial from Francis P Church of the New York Sun 1897…
    change that to "Yes Gilli there is someone up there who likes you"...
    They do urgent passport renewal. But at a cost...$650.
    All our savings on the airfare had disappeared. C’est la vie!

    So I made arrangements to go into the city at 7pm complete with photo and credit card.
    It was annoying but it was a solution. Imagine if I turned up at the airport. I can’t think about that I’m afraid.

    Meanwhile Dale came home with a huge smile on his face and opened his wallet there was a wad of cash.
    “I have just won Lotto $708”…he was so excited.
    Well isn’t that Divine Intervention
    I explained my dilemma.
    His face fell he couldn’t believe it.

    It was likened to the All Blacks major loss in the Rugby World Cup 2007.

    He was devastated.
    But our daughter Katie (Pollyanna!) worked it out.

    $650 for the passport - $12 for the photo - $14 for the ticket
    He was still up $32.
    Dale you’re still a winner

    So we arrived in Papeete Aeroport Faaa
    Grabbed a cab and off to our Hotel Kon Tiki Pacific.
    I found it on the internet.
    The position was excellent right opposite the Moorea Ferry.
    A little shabby but hey it was relatively cheap.
    Up to our room.

    It was fine, the bathroom left a bit to be desired…a good clean would have helped.
    We set off to have a drink in the bars of Papeete.

    The Kon Tiki is right in the middle of the bar scene and it was lively.
    We had a Gin and Tonic…but it is quite expensive, so we decided that we should really be drinking our duty free.
    We wandered back to the hotel. We decided that perhaps the hotel might have more uses than Les Touristes....possibly renting the rooms by the hour to the ladies of the night!
    That said, the staff were pleasant, got us a bucket des glaces and we retired to our balcony and listened to music on the ipod...with several vodka and butterscotch schnapps.

    Sleeping device you know!

    6.30 am from the balcony at Kon Tiki awaiting our Ferry
    If you have only a few hours to spend while waiting to get to the outer islands.
    This is perfectly acceptable accommodation.
    The bed was comfortable, we got our wake-up call the staff were pleasant.
    I’ve been in worse.
    But back to the les vacances.
    Quick le petit dejeuner at Les 3 Brasseurs, very good croissants and café.
    They were setting up for a Music Festival, which was on for the next week, unfortunately we were going to miss it, but I love the way Tahitians decorate everything.
    Those wonderful palm leaves cover all sins.

    On the Aremiti 5.
    The rapid ferry 30 minutes to Moorea…
    Last time I was in Moorea in the 80’s, we flew as the ferry was very slow. and it can be a rough patch of water. but on these fast ferries not a problem
    We arrived and there was Michael our chauffeur to meet us
    Into the jeep, and he delivered us to join Sheryl at our accommodation at
    Tamara’s Beautiful Bungalow "La Baie du Nuarei"
    Isn’t this just wonderful?
    My next post will be about this superb destination.


    Barbara said...

    Sad about the passport. Ridiculous amount for an urgent one. I love Tahiti. It smells of coffee, vanilla and frangipani. I know that hotel. When I was there I think it was where we went to watch the locals dance their sexy "I can't remember the name" but a fabulous latin style dance.

    Asha said...

    Tahiti is so naturally beautiful Gilly, you are a very lucky girl.We have to wait until kids move out to college to see all those exotic places!:))
    Thanks for posting these photos, enjoyed looking at them.

    So Simple said...

    Barbara and Asha
    Yes Tahiti is one of the world'smost beautiful places we are lucky to be so close.
    Barbara you're right it is also the smell of Tahiti The hotel really is a hoot.

    katiez said...

    I can't believe you could get a passport that fast...even for that much money.
    But I would have done just about anything to get to Tahiti!

    So Simple said...

    Katie it wasn't that long ago that I would it wouldn't have happened. I gues we have to thank technology for that.