Biking around has its rewards

Trip Start Nov 06, 2010
Trip End Nov 17, 2010

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Flag of French Polynesia  , Society Islands,
Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Today was our last full day in Bora-Bora and decided to take it easy (at least, our version of taking it easy).  We were never ones to lay around the beach all day, which probably helped with the copious amount of food we've been having for nearly 2 weeks.  After a leisurely and late breakfast, we caught the shuttleboat to Le Moana, where we went to a little store outside the hotel to rent electric bicycles. 

After spending a few minutes getting used to the electric bike, we were off!  We still had to do the work and pedal, but it was almost as if someone was pushing us from behind.  I still would’ve preferred a scooter though.  We pedaled on the main road (there’s no biker’s lanes) with motorists slowing down to pass us by.  It was a bit scary for me, since I’ve never biked on an open road before. 

It was an easy 4 – 5 mile ride to Vaitape, the "hub" of Bora-Bora.  Along the way, we stopped at various scenic points including a roadside shack that featured two while dolphin statues. 

Once in Vaitape, I decide to shop of my black pearl pendant while Brian checked out other stores.  After visiting a few jewelry shops, I ended up at buying my pendant at Baldini Black Pearls Boutique.  The owner & jeweler, Nicolas, was quite patient with my indecisiveness.  He even tried to sell me a gorgeous 35-strand black pearl necklace for $3,000, remarking, “This is a great bargain!  Each pearl is only $85!” 

With Brian’s help, I finally settled on a simple black pearl pendant with a small diamond accent.  Actually, the pearl is really grey-green in colour but its iridescence makes it look more black in certain light.   

While I was filling out the documents for my purchase (for duty-free), I asked if I can try on the $3,000 pearl necklace.  What surprised me was that he actually said yes!  There I was filling out paperwork (my pearl has a pedigree since it’s a certified authentic black pearl, imagine that!) while wearing that beautiful pearl necklace.  It was surprisingly heavy.
After walking around Vaitape (all 2 blocks of it) and checking out the Chin Lee grocery store, we stopped by a little place called Aloe Café for a light snack.  We settled on one of their outdoor tables and snacked on a fried appetizer sampler.  It was slightly surreal to watch women's basketball on ESPN on their satellite TV.  Even in paradise, you can’t get away from American influence it seems. 

The ride from Vaitape back to the bike shop by Le Moana felt longer.  By this time, we were both a bit tired.  After dropping off our bikes and catching the shuttleboat back to our hotel, we arrived at our villa to find that the hotel staff closed our drapes.  It was a bit odd so I opened the drapes and saw that they had decorated the table on our terrace for that evening’s private dinner!  The table was beautifully decorated with crisp white linens, tons of flowers and pillar candles.  It just oozed romance!

Dinner was at 7pm on our terrace.  By this time, the sun had set and the candles gave the terrace a romantic ambiance.  Our personal butler arrived on time with our first course:  creamed quinoa with roasted squash and leeks.  After savoring our appetizer, our butler returned with our main course -- beef tenderloin medallions with some sort of light sauce on the side.  It was cooked to perfection and paired flawlessly with a French red wine. 

After serving our main course, our butler announced that he’d return in a little while with our dessert.  We polished off our main course rather quickly (the bike ride got our appetities kicked our appetites into high gear!)  A knock on the door announced the arrival of the butler with dessert:  a huge piece of chocolate mousse cake, topped with dark chocolate ganache and a crispy hazelnut base.  It was beautifully decorated – the French really know their pastry!  It was a wonderful way to end our honeymoon – romantic and luxurious!
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