The Homestretch.

20 Days. This is the time I have left in Rarotonga – and it sucks. I’ve come to love my parents’ homeland and more importantly the people that make this island amazing.

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The view from Aunty Pare’s deck in Tupapa.

I have been totally slack the past month when it comes to blogging (and I call myself a writer?) with December being a supremely busy, but intensely fun month. My brother took time off to come holiday in Raro with his friend Aaron, and it was great catching up with him around the Christmas period. My spirits were lifted further when he arrived with Beyonce’s new album (don’t judge me).

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My brother Zeb at Christmas Lunch.

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Zeb’s friend Aaron at Christmas Lunch.

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My brother knows me too well, getting me Beyonce’s new album for Xmas!

I experienced one of the best celebrations of Christmas I’d ever had, starting off with a delicious cooked breakfast at the resort, followed by a massive Christmas lunch/drinks with family in Matavera and then a well-put-together ‘Ex-pat Christmas Dinner’ with my closest friends on the island. Tom (fellow Pacific Resort employee and friend) went out of his way to deck his hilltop house in full festive glory – complete with Christmas crackers, Santa hats, Chicken roast and all the other usual trimmings. We all contributed a special meal each, and thanks to Claire’s help, I was able to deliver a tasty white chocolate and berry cheesecake. This dessert was put together in my tiny apartment with no proper dish, mixer or measuring cups. It turned out great though, as well as the other dishes including bread sauce, Yorkshire pudding and seasoned veggies. After dinner we traded Secret Santas and had a good laugh at the assortment of gifts piled on the table. Among them were the usual wine and chocolate, as well as a few creative faves such as a colouring book (my gift which I absolutely loved), I ‘Heart’ (the heart suitably symbolised in Jandals) Raro singlet and a handy zip-up carrybag (sure to tote this one on our next visit to Rehab).

Tom's beautiful Christmas table setup

Tom’s beautiful Christmas table setup

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Merry Christmas from the Ex-Pats!

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The white chocolate & berry cheesecake Claire and I successfully made for Christmas Dinner.

New Year’s was also awesome, where I spent most of it working in the bar/acting as resort photographer (but it was so much fun!), and then headed out to Muri Beach to witness the fireworks show. It was definitely one of the best New Year’s celebrations I’ve had in a long time.

A guest sketched this picture of me while I was working behind the bar on New Year's!

A guest sketched this picture of me while I was working behind the bar on New Year’s!

In the less-than-three-weeks I have left in Rarotonga I’ve made a plan to cross off all the ‘must-dos’ on the island.

This list includes:

– Biking around the island

cycle the island

– WALKING around the island (yes this is possible, and will be good training for Tough Mudder)

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– Completing the Cross Island Walk

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– Karaoke

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My ‘go-to’ Karaoke song – Beyonce’s Crazy in Love.

– Eating at the Top 5 Rarotonga TripAdvisor Restaurants (Just two more to visit!)

The Mooring.

The Mooring.

– Photo sesh at abandoned Sheraton Hotel

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– Bake a cake and prepare a roast in my apartment oven

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From now on, my weekend won’t be wasted on Girls/The Newsroom binges and drawing in my colouring book. It’s time to mark these must-dos off the list!

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