December 24, 2008--MERRY CHRISTMAS EVE Easter Island!!
Sharon & Meyers--
Happy Xmas Eve!!
Back from our full day excursion with Freider waiting for our next great meal at the seafood joint. Watching the waves crash on the rocks, breeze blowing, the smell of the ocean-breath-taking. The sun is preparing to hide away, spilling its last few rays on the crystal clear water. So quiet and peaceful. What a way to wind down the day.
Freider was at our hotel (Hotel Gomero) to pick us up at 9:30. We drove to Tahai and Ana Kakenga, where we learned a bit about where we ventured to yesterday. This area was refurbed in the 1960's..discussed the Polynesian influence in the Rapa Nui culture. Amazed at how knowledgeable Freider is! Our conversations are AWESOME! Being in love with all things ancient and rocky...I'm in heaven!
Continued on to Hanga Poukura and all the way to the Moai Quarry, the birthplace of the statues. They were carved out of the mountainside and only once they were placed on the Ahu (ceremonial platform) did the artists give them the gift of sight.
The quarry was so awe-inspiring-the statues from almost complete and ready to move, to just being started. Reminded me of a ghost town--a civilizations buried by time and according to Freider even ignored by some explorers. Very emotional and spiritual place--nothing had really changed since the mines were abandoned hundreds of years ago. It gave me a much better appreciation of the pure love the Rapa Nui had for their people and respect they paid them upon their death. Something to be appreciated about the way this culture loved their people.
After exploring the Quarry and a great hike, we had lunch and headed to Tongariki. Tongariki is the home of the largest set of standing Moai. 15 in all, they have weathered the test of time. They were knocked down by the tsunami of the 1980's...unfortunately the relics and broken Moai were scattered inland. They found bones and broken Moai for miles inland after the 9+ earthquake that struck the South Pacific. Sad, sad day.
Easter Island sits alone on the Easter Island tectonic plate and is often referred to as Te Pito O Te Henua or 'The Naval of the World'. There is a spot marked by a magnetic, round stone...many believe to have mystical and healing powers. When your hand is placed on it, it feels as if the heat from the rock is being transfered into your body--Meyers thought this was way cool :-)
We then headed to the beach!! Anakena--one of the prettiest places in the entire world! I was very excited to jump into the cool, clear water. Meyers, being afraid of ocean-life is always a bit more leary about jumping into the ocean...BUT HE DID IT! After a few hours of blistering in the sun, we snagged a Fanta and headed back to the hotel after a full day excursion. We prepped for our Xmas Eve dinner and headed into town.
Dinner was incredible (again by our new pal Pasquet, the Self-Proclaimed Norman Viking!) After dinner we sat out on the Plaza Hotamatua with all the dogs. Sharon let one of the street dogs lick her and I caught a great pic! Most importantly, we exchanged our rings and made a promise to be with each other forever..through whatever comes in life. There was no better place in the entire world to do this...we talked about our life together. Simplicity, challenges, child, and travel. It was very emotional for both of us. Who knows where our life journey and adventure will take us but we will be together and that's what counts :-) I can see it being simple, yet full of travel and exploration. My best friend and partner for always. That's a very beautiful thing. PERFECT DAY!!
Oh, and our new pal the black lab ran off with the Tiffany ring bag and wouldn't give it back! Great pics and even greater laughter!!