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Now THIS is a Garden...

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I loved chasing waterfalls through this Jungle on the Island of Raiatea..it is the Garden Island of the Islands of French Polynesia..

This picture is of me coming through the jungle with Impatiens at my feet.
They grew wild along the river banks through out the jungles. I saw many of them on my waterfall adventures. Following stream beds to their source was a favorite pastime.

Here I enjoyed the view of Bird of Paradise and Hibiscus growing in a local jungle garden.

This lovely gentleman is Pascal. He and his family were my hosts for a short stay on the Island of Tahaa.
He happily took me to his garden to show me how he pollinates Vanilla Vines as they develope. There are no bees. This is the way they are able to harvest their wonderful Tahitian Vanilla Beans…

Pascal spoke no English, only French and Tahitian.. I had a translator who Pascal brought to his home for me..I spoke no French, only English. The translator was a very big help. :)


Pascal is pollinating these Vanilla pods.


I was very impressed with this ancient tree…but cannot remember what it is called…can anyone help me with its name? :) Sixpence has helped me find the name of this tree..it is a Banyan tree. Thank you Six!


A garden in the jungle…Taro plants and Hibiscus, I can still recognise.
In the background you can see the metal roof over vanilla beans that are drying there. They have it arranged so that they can roll it off when the sun is out, then they can roll if back again if it threatens rain.


Papaya’s …watch out and DO NOT eat too much fresh papaya, no matter how good it tastes…I learned the hard way…


This is my translator and I swiping mosquitos off our legs..they did not seem to bother Pascal so much…maybe that is what he used his knife for…hmmm

I took this trip in 1990, I fell in love with the Tahitian people.
They had great fear of the pollution from nuclear testing in their Islands. It broke my heart to think of it.
They would only eat fish within their own Barrier reefs in hopes that the natural barriers of coral and the atolls there would help hold out the pollution.

They had, just the year before I arrived, been allowed to learn English and speak their own language without fear. They were also taking their wooden medicine mixing troughs out of hiding and beginning to use their own healing herbs once again.

I loved learning their language from them and wish I had, had more time with them. Mururu, means Thankyou and Nana…means Good bye…

To all of you, and I thank you GOY for this chance to share this lovely time in my life……..

Mururu ….Nana xxx ~Cat

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Comments

 

gorgeous photos, U lucky person...............enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!

31 Jan, 2010

 

I do enjoy the memories Doon..thank you... :)

31 Jan, 2010

 

Loved your blog Cat. I do hope it's not nana from you.

31 Jan, 2010

 

No ..lol..not at all...just a chance to use some words that I remember hearing the most precious little Tahitian Grandma use as she walked away from me...I can still see her sweet face and voice. Na na ...Na na...and the children and the families..very sweet to remember... She really spoke no English but she and I sat and talked as we rode the little boat taxi to Tahaa....it was odd, we understood each other and it was so relaxing speaking to her... Thank you Toto..

31 Jan, 2010

 

What a fantastic place to visit, Cat - so totally tropical, so very different! How long did you stay there?

31 Jan, 2010

 

I was there for a month in hurricane season..Barbara...no half way adventures back then...lol..I was there for the month of March, in 1990.

31 Jan, 2010

 

thanks for sharing what lovely memories you have from there

31 Jan, 2010

 

I'm very pleased to hear that.

31 Jan, 2010

 

Hi Piersdad....I did enjoy being on your side of the equator...thank you... :)

31 Jan, 2010

 

what a lucky girl....it looks awesome..

31 Jan, 2010

 

Many Many Mururus,"Cat" for sharing, this trip here!

Provokes a great deal of thought!!! I am now a whole lot :-)), but, at the same time :-((,
Was thinking "Isn't it great to STILL have places like this?" Then thought - "Why. "on Earth" am I thinking this thought???????????"

Sad, really, ;-((

But, a lovely place, and folks!!!!!! :-))

31 Jan, 2010

 

:) Mururu to you too David... You know I doubt that this island has changed much at all since I was there, even though it has been 20 years ago.
They are not very big islands and would not take much in the way of change..

We chose not to go to the tourist destinations and only stayed with Tahitian families that leased out rooms in their homes or had a little beach hut by their home. There were plenty of tourist type venues then, we did not want that.

We had no reservations before we landed there in pouring hot rain. LOL..oh my..talk about culture shock...and to top it off.. each time a jet turned around to take off..things went flying inside the building if the doors were open what with the jet engines and all..lol

31 Jan, 2010

 

Cat, what a wonderful experience, you must have some lovely memories of what looks a beautiful place, Thankyou for sharing some.....

31 Jan, 2010

 

Wow.....what a sumptuous vibrant and exotic setting, and such wonderful photos. Thank you for sharing this Blog with us.

31 Jan, 2010

 

What a wonderful garden is the name of the tree your after called th Banyan tree. thanks for showing us another natural untouched garden of nature.

31 Jan, 2010

 

Fantastic blog, Catfinch! added it to my list of places I must visit...someday...=)

1 Feb, 2010

 

Thank you Linclass..I do and it is nice to have things in your life that you will never mind that you did..lol..I am glad you enjoyed... :)

You know Sixpence..it could be a Banyan tree I suppose..but I really am not sure...what is really something about the jungle is that ..it may look like jungle but a lot of it is actually plants that grow naturally in the jungle that families cultivate..much of it is their gardens that they harvest and sell at market.

Thank you Raquel..you should go ! You are not as far away from it as I was when I went..lol..I had to fly first off a small island north of where I live now, into Seattle WA. and then on to LA X. in California and then onto Papeete,Tahiti and then on to Raiatea....lol...I hope you go. :)

1 Feb, 2010

 

Great stuff cat, enjoyed this very much ..;o)

1 Feb, 2010

 

This is a great blog, what a lovely holiday, it's a wonderful part of the world :-)))

1 Feb, 2010

 

Mururu Cat, for telling us about this lovely place. I would love to visit there myself. It sounds wonderful x

1 Feb, 2010

 

This is a picture of a Banyan tree http://blogit.today.com/files/2009/01/largest_banyan_tree.jpg

1 Feb, 2010

 

I loved reading this,and the pics are stunning.Lovely to see how they live happily,and work with the nature they have.hope it stays like that forever for them.Thanks for showing us.:o))

1 Feb, 2010

 

Yes! Sixpence..that is it!..Thank You! It is a Banyan...such and interesting tree. The one I was looking at in the photo was very tall..I cannot think how old it must have been. It was along the path to one of the Maraes we hiked to. Maraes are very ancient places of worship in the islands.

1 Feb, 2010

 

wonderful blog catfinch............

1 Feb, 2010

 

Mururu Hywel.. :) and to all for your lovely comments..I am glad you have enjoyed.
Maybe once we can all start gardening again..and spring bursts out, I will be able to send pics of my here and now...lol...20 years ago ..gosh seems some days like yesterday and then again...like 20 years ago!...lol..

1 Feb, 2010

 

Thanks Cat really enjoyed that with you.

1 Feb, 2010

 

It looks wonderful there Cat, you must have had the most fantastic time there. How dreadful for the local people that they have to live with the fear of the nuclear testing. How could it have been allowed to happen in an inhabited area. However I envy you your time in what lloks like paradise. :o)

Sandra x

1 Feb, 2010

 

Your welcome Cat, must be very old that tree, its facinating to discover ancient worship places, even though I am not a religeous person, I find it interesting.

1 Feb, 2010

 

wonderful trip down memory lane Cat.Great that their part of the world has remained largely unchanged...a rare thing nowadays.........

1 Feb, 2010

 

A lovely glimpse of a different way of life. There contentment lies.

1 Feb, 2010

 

great blog cat,, lucky you, bet you enjoyed ever minute, look like lovely people to :o))

1 Feb, 2010

 

I have to think that the nuclear testing and the polluted waters have someting to do with our weather here a lot..and the fact that the sea life has moved north so much...Sandra...it affects the whole world..not just them.

I know that even these dear islands will change Bonkers...change has to happen to eveything eventually. Lets hope it is in a good way...

The Tahitians are a very deep feeling and sweet people, Wagger..they won my heart very easily.

I did enjoy it Sandra..would do it over again, in exactly the same way. No tourist destinations, staying with families and learning from them...we even rode the school bus into the market one day...was wondeful looking into the faces of the children on the bus, looking at us...lol..just absorbing their lives was wonderful.

2 Feb, 2010

Sid
Sid
 

This is lovely Cat, really enjoyed reading about your Tahiti adventure. I can imagine the little grandma walking away saying na na... na na.... :-)

2 Feb, 2010

 

lovely blog Caroline~

2 Feb, 2010

 

Sarah, my meeting with the little grandma was an interesting experience, she told me with words I somehow understood where her ancestors came from and I told her where I came from ... We chatted about a young pregnant woman on the boat, she let me know that even though the young girl was not married that they were all happy to know that she was fertile, it is a special blessing to them not a bad thing. She told me of the boat taxi that not so long before had flipped on this route and many drowned, many surprisingly did not know how to swim. My traveling companian was sitting close by and asked me..."Do you understand what she is saying?" I nodded wide eyed that I did and kept on chatting with her. He sat there shaking his head in disbelief.
When the boat docked, out of respect of course we all let her get off first, then she turned and waved and smiled and said, Na..Na.....Na..Na.....I had told her how I wanted to learn her language...I knew she was helping me learn, it was in her smile I think....a secret there, maybe even a gift.
The whole time, I watched a local man sitting on the boat with a 3 gallon tub of melting icecream, it was dripping on to the floor of the boat, making puddles...lol..I later found as we walked to the address that we needed to find for our stay on the island, that the man was Pascal.

3 Feb, 2010

 

Thank you Arlene..I am glad you enjoyed it...

3 Feb, 2010

Sid
Sid
 

That is amazing Cat that you could understand oneanother....I think children have that gift.....

4 Feb, 2010

 

Thanks Cat great photos and blog I enjoyed reading it :0)

4 Feb, 2010

 

Loved this blog some great photos what a different way to live.

5 Feb, 2010

 

Sid..they reminded me of children because in so many ways they were carefee..I ...as some of you may know...am a child...6 years old..stayin there..yep I am... :)

You are very welcome Sueb.

Mavis, so glad you enjoyed and learned about this culture..it is precious to me and taught me a lot as well.

5 Feb, 2010

 

Beautiful place, I have always wanted to go to Tahiti, now I want to go to Raiatea too! I know I'm late to visit this blog, better late than never!

8 Mar, 2010

 

Yep ..lol...better late than never ......very cool place I think you would enjoy it very much.

:o)

10 Mar, 2010

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