Monday, 20 July 2015

21st July - Arborek Island - village - manta ray glory

Tuesday 21st July 2015

Thanks to Google for the images
Yesterday afternoon the clear blue water of Arborek Island redeemed itself.  We had been reliably informed that at 4pm a manta ray would come and cruise around in the bay, just near the jetty.

So, to fill in time before this appointment with a beautiful creature of the sea, we went for a walk through the village and around the tiny island from 3-4.  This village has won the Papuan equivalent of Tidy Towns, and it is indeed gorgeous.  For a start, before you even get off the jetty, there is a nice sign asking you to NOT FISHING, and to DRESS POLITELY.

There are lots of homestays.  Some, pretty enough, built in the new fashion, of concrete block.

And others, so much nicer, built in the traditional manner.

The local band was playing

getting ready for a party of fifteen people, coming from another island for a three day visit.  Women were cooking vast pots of food – HOT!!

We were mightily impressed with the picnic tables, built around trees on the foreshore.  So very pretty, and so comfortable!

But…it was nearly 4.00 and I was hoping my manta was punctual…like me…

And – YES!!!  I spent a very happy hour with this giant, gentle creature. At times we swam along together, fin to fingertip.  At other times it would swim right at me, and then at the last moment it would swoop underneath, and roll over, balletically. 

It made me very happy! 

We are now on our way to Waisai, to stock up.  We have eaten our last shallot, our last egg, our last chilli.  But on the way we will stop at Friwin Island so I can have…another swim!

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