We had rain during the night, although we never heard anything. When I came out this morning at just before five, I noticed that everything was wet. At five, the Captain got underway, so no wi-fi today, just lots of waves as he steams home for Port Denaru.
As we packed yesterday, we missed the frenzied pace that has seemed to have grasped some of our other passengers. All we have to do is stick a few last minute things into the suitcases (like TBG’s new Blue Lagoon shirt) and our shaving kits.
As much fun as this trip was, I’m glad to be heading back. The diving was good, the water warm and fairly clear and the cruise staff could not have gotten higher points for customer service. Always laughing, smiling and ready to help, they are the penultimate service reps.
The sea treated us to a gorgeous sunrise and there aren’t too many waves. The skies are still cloudy, so there might be some additional rain in store for us. That’s good, they really need it here.
It’s hard to believe that a week has passed. It certainly was an eventful one and I am glad we did this. I’m not so certain that I would do another cruise as this is the only itinerary that Blue Lagoon does. However, I have learned to never say never, especially when it comes to traveling.
We got up and around by seven, just in time for our last breakfast on board. Many folks hadn’t had our foresight the day before and were rushing through things so that they could get back and pack. We ate and returned to the cabin and were able to relax for a few minutes. We had to be out of the room by nine and while the guys did stuff, I went down to the lounge and secured a couple comfy chairs for them. That was we didn’t end up have to stand or sit on the floor.
The trip into the port was much smoother than coming out and our disembarkation went very smoothly. Our driver was waiting to whisk us back to the airport. The check in was a little slow as there was a ‘difficult’ traveler ahead of us. She had too many bags and didn’t want to pay for them. She had everything on her phone, but it wouldn’t load, she didn’t have proper ID, and so on. They opened another counter and we were whisked away.
Because we were flying business class (my birthday gift from TBG), we got to wait in the VIP lounge and waited for them to call us for the flight. We were supposed to board at 12:55 and at 12:52, they still hadn’t called us. I got anxious and TBG threw a bit of a fit. “They said they would call us!”
I told him fine and that I was going to the gate. Jeff joined me and TBG finally grumped along. Oh, surprise, our plane was boarding. They’d forgotten to call us. If it hadn’t been for me and my ‘I need to be there’ instinct, we would have missed the plane. TBG was not happy with me, as he often isn’t in these cases.
We got on board – the seating was spacious and comfortable, but I was sad that there were no foot rests. However, we had the most animated and gregarious flight attendant ever. She had a name that was too long to remember, but I will never forget her smile and the fact that she didn’t seem to know a stranger. She laughed, complimented and just made the trip a delight.
Again, we were served two meal – we were all a bit distressed to discover that the menu was the same from Nadi to Apea (Western Samoa) and from Apea to Nadi. We each had a different entrée, Jeff the Chicken Marsala, TBG Beef Stroganoff and me a veggie risotto. They both liked their meals, but my risotto was gummy and there were strips of what I thought were regular red peppers, but turned out to be Scotch Bonnet (or something similar). I thought I was going to die. Jeff was so worried, he alerted the attendant (I was seated by Jeff and TBG was across the aisle). She offered me milk (I was fine by then) and asked me to please fill out a survey about it. She seemed very concerned that I was blindsided by the hot peppers.
We’d just about had time to finish when we arrived in Apea and were told we all needed to disembark and the plane secured because we had entered into US air space. Hmm, when we were driving from the pier to the airport, we saw the Fijian army drilling – that can’t be good). Okay, we got off and passed through security, they searched our stuff, patted me down and told me to take off my shoes. The guys were ‘unmolested’ as it were. There were not enough seats, so we took a spot at a small café table and ordered some Diet Coke and waited. We did have fun talking to the waiter and then one of the flight security guards about Western Samoa.
Again, TBG dragged his heels and we were nearly the last on the plane. I don’t know what got into him. The flight from Apea to Honolulu was five hours long and they immediately set about feeding us again… sigh – that is my one complaint – they feed you too soon. This time I had the chicken and Jeff was right. It was fabulous. He and TBG had the beef stroganoff.
I purposefully had another glass of wine (although I didn’t finish it) and went to sleep. I pretty much stayed asleep until the Captain flashed the lights on and told us we were thirty minutes from Honolulu. We got in a few minutes early (11:45 Thursday – we left Fiji at 1:40 Friday) and braced ourselves for Immigration. Surprise, it was deserted except for us. We walked through it and headed to baggage claim.
This was the longest wait we had, or so it seemed. Thankfully, all three bags made it and we headed for our transfer to the hotel. They whisked us away, dropped us off at the Ala Moana Hotel and that was that. Our rooms had been paid for, so it was merely a matter of collecting our keys and going up.
We ended up with double beds. TBG put us both in one bed, me against the wall (“… unless you think we should sleep in separate beds.”). I did think that was the best choice. I was very restless for about an hour, as was he.
Total time elapsed from the airport to bed was 45 minutes – I think that has to be a first in flying history.