Patong beach, Phuket . . . A little busy for my liking!
It’s his first overseas trip since he was six years old when I took them both for a relax in Fiji and broke my arm but that's another story. The excitement mixed with trepidation has him buzzing. It’s actually my present to him for his 21st Birthday last December. So off he’s gone on the romantic holiday of a lifetime.
It took me back to the year before I got married. Ray and I wanted to have a holiday but something exotic, pampery, cultural. So, we settled on Tahiti. Not in any small part due to a Cousins Imperial Leather TV commercial airing at the time which had a family travelling in a customised Jumbo with the lady of the house swanning in a bubbly spa bath sipping champagne and responding to the question ‘Where should we go for our next holiday? . . . . “Ahhhh. . Tahiti looks nice!”
How totally cool is that!
Not just Tahiti but a few of the Society Islands including Ra'iatea, Huahine, Morea, Maupiti, Bora Bora . . .so we booked our little island hop holiday. Now in 1978 it wasn’t that easy to sneak of for a holiday at 21 years of age with you’re boyfriend of a few months! We were bound by middle class values and expectations. We were no more allowed to sleep together than fly and any sexual encounters had to be clandestine and usually involved cars, beaches and out of the way places. It was weird, we were allowed to go camping for a weekend or stay over at friend’s house but absolutely no sleep overs at home. What can’t be seen and all that!
So Ray, being the gentleman he was, decided he’d have to broach this with my father and explain that whilst we were about to leave for a three week tropical bonkfest, his intentions were honourable and we were as committed as a young couple could be without cohabiting. I don’t know what he said but a blanket of comfort fell upon my parents and they were fine with the whole thing. So off we went!
It was without doubt the most fantastic three weeks of my life. Trapseing around the South Pacific with the one I loved. Drinking Mango Daquiries and Rhum Punch whilst watching the sun set over the sea. Snorkelling in crystal lagoons where empty shells from the US occupation during WWII were still evident, now transformed into little coral reefs for a myriad of tetris and angel fish. We saw young villagers dance, firewalkers and jugglers . . pretty Polynesian girls giggle at us when we asked for “Woit Woine” . . .we climbed hills, marvelled at the jungle and picked our own vannilla and mangoes. The only contretemps was an almighty fight over whose fault it was that our Outrigger canoe was going in circles. All too soon it was over – as was the holiday!
Upon landing back in Oz, we had a wedding to attend, pretty much as we got off the plane so we taxi’d straight there only to have everyone congratulating us when we arrived. There were kisses and handshakes from people we barely knew! We were shocked to be the centre of attention at someone else’s special day!
What for?. . well my father in his middle class morality had promptly announced to the world that we had actually got engaged whilst away!
Actually, I never really thanked him for the arranged marriage. Perhaps I should have! Ironically, we spent our Honeymoon in the Blue Mountains and a Week at Port Macquarie, not quite as exotic but hey, it was a honeymoon, we’d have been happy in Mawson’s Hut!
So back to DrummerBoy - have a wonderful trip darling and make the most of the exotic surroundings . . learn to travel not just tour. Be careful with your Passport and money. Take nothing but photographs, leave nothing but footprints and look after my future daughter in law - make it a really romantic holiday. See you on the 26th!