Saturday, we explored the island, sunbathed, and relaxed, but by now I had had my share of lounging, so I was looking forward to our sunset cruise and a romantic motu dinner.
Around five-thirty, Ray met us at the dock and we climbed aboard his boat for a harbor cruise. While he played his ukulele and sang, we watched the sunset from our seats on the bow of the boat.
Daylight was fading fast when Ray pulled into a boat slip on a secluded motu and we disembarked. Heena, Ray’s cousin, was already on the island cooking, and delicious smells wafted from her fire.
Ray showed us to our table, an overwater deck with seating for two, and left to help Heena with the meal while we sipped wine and watched the sun disappear from view. When darkness enveloped us, Ray was there to light the tiki torches.
We began our meal with breadfruit soup, a staple in the islands. Having been introduced to the starchy fruit in Trinidad I will say it’s an acquired taste.
I was pleased to dig into our next starter, ’ota ika, a Polynesian dish consisting of raw fish marinated in citrus juice and coconut milk. I had it first at the breakfast buffet at the InterContinental Resort in Tahiti and since then, couldn’t seem to get enough.
Our main was a platter of grilled fish, shrimp, lobster, and assorted vegetables. For dessert, haupia— a coconut pudding. After dinner, we nursed our wine, and with the last sip were ready to make our way back to the boat slip, the tiki torches lighting the path.
It had been a pleasurable evening. Ray and Heena were attentive servers but never hovered, leaving us to savor our meal and the moment in privacy. In the background, the only sound was Ray strumming a tune on his ukulele.