|On Bora Bora Anne and I took advantage of many of the activities offered by the hotel. One afternoon was spent touring the island in an outrigger canoe, another doing the mandatory shopping in Viatape, another snorkeling at the Lagonarium and another at the Coral Garden. It seems as though our beach bungalow was just a stopping off point between our many excursions.
On the ride to the hotel from the ferry, the hostess told us of a small supermarket not far from the hotel. Knowing the outrageous prices charged by the hotels for snacks (a can of coke $3) we decided to walk to the market and stock up on snacks for the room. Leaving the room we were greeted by "Buddy," our name for one of the beach dogs that roam freely on the beaches of Polynesia. As one local told us, Polynesians love small puppies, but when they mature they end up roaming the beaches. Buddy was friendly and playful and reminded us of our pets waiting for us at home.
|Anne and I played with Buddy for quite some time before heading off to the market. During that time he endeared himself to us. We wanted to feed him something but had nothing. We vowed to buy him something from the market. Buddy followed as we walked through the garden path back to the hotel entrance and then onto the road to the market. A short distance down the road Buddy was confronted by another dog and he high-tailed it off to hide somewhere. Reaching the market we bought some soda and snacks, and, failing to find something for Buddy, we ended up buying him a can of imported sausage from Denmark. No, I'm not telling you the costs. Suffice it to say expensive.|
|Returning to the hotel Buddy was nowhere in sight. I thought for sure that we'd wasted our money on the sausages, that we'd never see him again. I was wrong. Not only did he reappear, he appeared with one of his other beach buddies, "Pal." Pal and Buddy were quite the pair. Playful and loyal. As we adopted them they adopted us. Whenever we left the room they were waiting at the door or not far away. They'd follow us up and down the beach, back and forth to dinner, and onto the dock area. Wherever we went they were sure to follow.
I have to admit, I was amazed at how smart they were. While sitting in front of the bungalow one afternoon I observed Buddy digging within several feet of the water's edge. He was digging rapidly and creating a small mound of sand behind him. After a minute or two he stepped into the hole and I wondered what he was doing. When he left Pal came over and stepped into the hole. I just had to take a look. Buddy, to my surprise, had dug about 18 inches down to where water formed at the bottom. How smart he was to know that the sand would filter out some of the salt and make it safe for them to drink the water. I was amazed.
|With Buddy and Pal there it wasn't a problem getting rid of the whole can of sausages. I guess that sealed our friendship and made them keep an eye out for us from that point forward. As it turned out Buddy would be the fickle one who would run off to play with anyone. Pal, on the other hand, proved to be a very loyal and loving pet. He was always there even when Buddy was nowhere to be found. When we went to sleep at night he slept right outside our door. When we awoke the next morning he was right there waiting for us.
I guess Pal's most endearing trick came at dinner time. We made reservations early to insure a water-front table. Pal and Buddy would follow us to the edge of the hotel and then disappear. Anne and I would take our seats and begin to enjoy our dinner. As with most open air restaurants there were a couple of resident kitties who maneuvered under the tables in search of handouts. I would feel a nudge against my leg, look down and find those little eyes looking at me. How could you resist? Of course I'd feed them a little morsel, and they'd come back for more. Can you imagine my surprise when I felt a strong nudge and looked down to find Pal sitting under the table and looking at me with his big brown eyes. He sneaked into the restaurant and managed to find us. He sat quietly as I fed myself and him. Poor Buddy was to big to sneak into the restaurant so we had to wrap some food and take it back for him. No, at the prices they charged I didn't feel at all guilty about sharing my meal with my four-legged friends.
|If we could have safely brought them home and accommodated them in our house we would have. They were really wonderful pets. But they looked so happy living the life of the beach bums that they were, and I'm sure other tourists, like Anne and I, who are an easy hit will visit, feed them and find them equally adoring.|
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