Worrall Travel R's

Worrall Travel R's
Roz and Russ

Worrall Travel R's - Kicking the Bucket List

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We are the Worrall Travel R's Roz and Russ Worrall. Our goal before we "kick the bucket" is to see as much of the world as we are able, learn about world cultures, experience making friends around the world, and share goodwill and what we learn with others. WE HOPE YOU JOIN US VIA THE BLOG ON OUR TRAVELS.

We started our world travels in 1969 in VW camper van in the USA, Canada, and Europe, but didn't actively blog about our travels until 2009 aboard our sailing vessel SV Worrall Wind, a 44 ft Nauticat Ketch.  On September 5, 2009 we left San Francisco and took a left at the Golden Gate to Explore the World.

From to Sea to Land
After almost 4 years of cruising Mexico and the South Pacific, we sold our beloved boat in Australia, 2013. The Worrall Travel R's are continuing our travels around by many other means of conveyance -boats,trains, planes, sometimes camels, elephants, rickshaws, and hot air balloons.. 

Russ is a retired engineer, optometrist, professor from U.C. Berkeley. Roz is a retired computer programmer/analyst, educator, (teacher, administrator, professional developer). 

Our Mantra:
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
~ Mark Twain

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Rapa Nui - The Rise and Fall of a Civilization Built on Rocks by Rocks

March 13, 2016, Worrall Travel R Day (WTRD) 65 (continued)

Sunday, March 13, 2016 - Afternoon
We arrived on Rapa Nui (Easter Island) at 12:50 in the afternoon, after a five hour flight from Santiago to Hanga Roa.
Hanga Roa is on the Southwest side of the island.  The air strip is very long and was built by the US as an alternative landing site for the space shuttle.  The shuttle never had to land here, but the strip can accommodate the 787 Dreamliner (which we were on), and has been a boon for tourism on this small island.

After collecting our luggage, we and two other American travelers, Kathleen (Seattle) and Angie (Oxnard) both retired United customer service agents were presented with leis as a welcome and transported to the Cabanas Vianni by our host Kake. (Pronounced cake eh).  We presented Kake with the donuts which she happily received.
New West Coast Friends, Kathleen and Angie
Kake in the Middle

We got settled quickly in our rooms and returned to reception to strategically plan what and how we we going to see all that we wanted in 2.5 days, this being the .5 of the days.  Russ and I decided to rent a car and invited Kathleen and Angie, both intrepid and fun spirits, to join us for days 1.5.  Kake arranged for a car to be delivered to the guesthouse at 7:00 pm.  We would have the 4 door jeep for 24 hours so that we could watch the sunset on the west side of the island tonight, sunrise on the east side of the island the following day, and have a full day of sight seeing on our own.

Before the car arrived, we walked downtown for a late lunch or early dinner in the late afternoon.  We picked a little restaurant at the minute harbor on the point.  Rapa Nui lacks a protective barrier reef.  There are only a few small bays that accommodate fishing boats.

All other boats must anchor offshore.  It's a dangerous place to anchor as the waves can become quite large and if the wind changes from offshore to onshore, sailors can easily find themselves being pummeled against the rocky shoreline.

Two sailboats were anchored offshore and we were glad not to be one of them.  We enjoyed watching the waves come crashing in and the surfers catching waves that were breaking too close to the rocks for a long ride.  Most of the rides looked short and deadly.  

The waves were coming in sets.  After the biggest wave in the set, the harbor calmed down for about three waves, where fishing boats and sailor's dinghies could get through the surf to the open water.

The smell of the ocean, the warm trade winds, and tropical flowers flooded us with memories.  As the sun got lower in the sky, we headed back to the cabana to pick up the car and head out to Tahai to watch the sunset behind the monolithic statues that have captured the imagination of so many people around the world.  These statues are call  Moais.  Each represents a dead village chief.  Long platforms of rock  (ahus) are built near the sea, and the memorial statue of the chief faces away from the sea towards the people.  Statues are believe to hold an inner spirit or manna of strength and survival.

We sat on a green grassy area drinking wine as the shadows of the Moai grew longer and the sky began to burn with the setting sun.

It was magical watching the sun set as it has done for billions of years, here and with the ancient Rapa Nui with the Moais looking down on us. Rapa Nui are not as old as the earth and sun.  It is believed they migrated here around 800 CE. We were in the presence of the ancestors.

All is Well with the Worrall Travel Rs on Easter Island

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