We have a little source of joint amusement and diversion when we are traveling and staying in a particular place for a few weeks and that is to create stories around our fellow travelers.
An idea place for this particular pastime for us was Rarotonga. When you have gone to ‘Raro’ you plan to stay for a time since air transit from North America is not a regular occurrence. We were there for nearly a month back in 2001.
And in our travels we spotted two cases in point, since we tended to run across these people quite regularly. Well, it is a small place, after all and you can’t spend all your time snorkeling in the heavenly beautiful lagoon or hiking the jungly hills. Sometimes you need somebody to gossip about. And since you don’t really know anybody, it’s good to create your own gossip.
Our first subjects we named ‘Bob and the Girls.’ We didn’t know what the situation was there, so we made it up as we went along. This was a middle-aged trio. He, slightly on the portly side, looked like maybe a banker or accountant. The first ‘she’, whom we thought was maybe the wife. Was a relatively attractive woman of the same vintage as Bob. And then there was a second lady. A slightly older, a bit heftier rather boobsy matron. All three seemed to be a unit of some sort. That is, they seemed tight.
Not to cast salacious aspersions on them we dispelled thoughts that this was some sort of vacation menage a trois and ultimately decided girl #1 was Bob’s wife and girl #2 was his sister. So, we saw them at beaches and in the tiny town of Avarua, and so forth. And then, sometime through their stay something bad seemed to have happened with the triumvirate. On our last night there, awaiting the Air New Zealand plane that would take us to LA, ten hours away, Bob and the Girls didn’t seem to be speaking. Girl #2 was standing out in the outside departure area chain-smoking and making not attempt to touch base with the other two. Hmm. We shall never know the end of that tale.
And then there was Dr. Helmut (name changed to not defame the guy). Dr. Helmut was a European originating medical practitioner on an island that boosted little medical help. That is, if you got really sick or hurt you had to be flown out to Auckland three hours away or seek help from the only two options on the island – Dr. Helmut and some other one I cannot recall the name of whom.
In any case, we often took morning coffee at this cool old plantation style eatery and coffee joint – and at one time hell-raising bar famous throughout the South Pacific – known as the Banana Court. It was lovely sitting out on the lanai drinking ‘flat whites’, which were cappuccinos in Down Under parlance. And as we sat, and faithfully every morning about 11 a lady of 40-ish with long blonde hair, swept up, and tight and highly revealing halter top would make her way through to Dr. Helmut’s office, which was next door. We developed a lot of tales around her as to who she was and what was the connection.
Was she a junkie and on a methadone treatment program? Was she his girlfirend? Was she his wife? Was she a hooker whom he was pimping out? We had no way of knowing. We didn’t stay at the coffee place long enough to see how long the visits took. But we liked the scenario we had developed (probably unfairly and far from the truth) and was that she was the ‘local sex trade’ practitioner.
One lovely afternoon we were at a sandy beach on Muri Lagoon. We’d gone down for a swim rather than snorkeling that day and the beach was a popular one and festooned with a goodly number of people. We chose our spot. Next to us on one side was a rather bloated looking middle aged guy and his companion was a similar in age female wearing the tiniest bikini that might still qualify as decent, but just barely. She filled it out quite admirably, I must confess. After having been there for a few minutes I realized that she was Dr. Helmut’s girl, but not with the good doctor. Was she at ‘work’? We shall never know.
How many of you create tales around your fellow travelers?