Swoon worthy photo from friends…Yesterday’s stop at Lifou, Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia….

Two newly born bush babies peering out at the world awaiting them In Marloth Park, South Africa. This photo was taken by friend Mick Dryden (wife, Lynne), both extraordinary photographers and birders. We hope to see them next February when we return to Marloth Park.

Yesterday on Facebook, Lynne and Mick, friends from South Africa, posted today’s main photo and the photo below, both of which sent us swooning.  I couldn’t take my eyes off these exceptional sightings and subsequent photos taken in the yard of their home in the bush in Marloth Park, where we’ll be living next February for my birthday and for months to come. 

As the time nears for the upcoming Antarctica cruise in a mere 10 months with the return to Africa thereafter, our enthusiasm is over the moon. However, we easily find ourselves living in the moment, embracing that which surrounds us at any given time.

Two more little bush babies were photographed by friend Mick in Marloth Park, South Africa. Thanks to wife Lynne for sharing these on Facebook and allowing us to post them.

As we continue to build our repertoire of worldwide experiences, we’ve learned to pick and choose what appeals to us the most. Since our site here is less of a “tourist travel log” and more of a “world travel journal,” we feel confident that our preferred experiences enrich us and hopefully for our readers.

Church on the Hill in Lifou.

The social aspect of cruising is the most appealing to us since we’re often isolated from many social interactions in some locations we’ve visited. For example, most recently in Tasmania, the little oceanfront town of Penguin met all of our needs for socialization.

Thanks to our landlord and new friend Terry, who diligently orchestrated many social events on our behalf, the experience proved to be rich in local culture and people, one we’ll never forget. 

Pier in Lifou where the ship’s tenders docked to unload passengers anxious to get to the beach.

During the second half of our three-month stint in Tasmania, in the lovely holiday home on the Huon River in the Huon Valley, we were a little more isolated during that period, especially since I wasn’t quite up to par during the six weeks in this gorgeous area of Tasmania. 

Aboard the Celebrity Solstice, and on other ships, we become entrenched in socialization well beyond our expectations. If it quiet for longer than we’d prefer, all we need to do is to head to a meal in the buffet, main dining, or one of several busy bars or lounges. 

Lifou is a popular island for snorkeling and swimming with its crystal blue waters and white sand beaches.

There, we discover other passengers anxious to interact, and lively and animated conversation ensues from the first moment we all introduce ourselves. There’s been few, if any, exceptions to this scenario as night after night, we’re thoroughly entertained and delighted by the people we meet.

Usually, when dinner ends, and we finally go our separate ways, Tom and I head to the Ensemble Lounge, where there’s live music, a long friendly bar, an easy spot to meet even more people. 

Beautiful scenery along the shoreline.

Often, we become equally engrossed in chatting with one another, possessing a degree of pleasure comparable to our early dating days when we couldn’t get enough of each other. 

That magical element has remained with us as we’ve traveled the world, although we’re together 24/7, year after year. There’s no pool table on this ship, but we’re easily able to experience exceptional evenings, dancing, chatting with one another and other passengers, and; wandering throughout the ship.

Native Church Lifou, Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia.

Tonight, if we can manage a short nap today, we’ll head to the “silent disco,” an event we’ll share in our next post.  We stayed up late last night, and both of us had trouble falling asleep. As a result, we’re both a bit sluggish.

Currently, on the last day of two full weeks of antibiotics and PPIs, I’m feeling better with a few modifications; small meals and consuming liquids slowly over a period of time. However, in a month, I’ll have to be retested for the bacteria we’ll arrange while in Sydney.

Small boats owned by locals.

As for the remainder of today’s photos, they’re from yesterday’s port of call in Lifou, Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia. Here’s a little information on Lifou, but more may be found online at this site and others;

“Ten thousand people live on Lifou, and the island is divided into three customary districts: Wetr, Lösi, and Gaïça. Traditions and customs are very much alive here. Celebrations and daily tasks (such as hut construction or agriculture) are permeated by tradition. Wé is the administrative center of the Loyalty Islands as it is the biggest tribal village. Located by gorgeous Chateaubriand Bay, Wé counts the island’s main commercial and administrative facilities. 
Lifou was officially discovered (and mapped out) by Dumont d’Urville in 1827. Rapidly, Catholic and Protestant missionaries flocked to the island. They fought to convert local populations, thereby echoing the more prosaic competition between the British Empire and France.”

The town is quiet and peaceful, with locals dedicated to providing positive tourist experiences.

As for the remainder of today, we’re content to “see what transpires” when each day, planned or not, proves to be filled with wonderful surprises.

May your day bring you many happy surprises! Thanks for “visiting” us!

Photo from one year ago today, March 6, 2016:

A few roses remained in Trish and Neil’s garden a year ago as summer comes to an end in New Zealand. For more photos with subjects we consider beautiful, please click here.