My wife and I were scootering around the Island of Rarotonga when I noticed this beautiful lady holding onto a flower bush on the side of the road waiting for the clockwise bus. (Rarotonga has 2 buses running at the same time around the island as public transport, one going clockwise and one anticlockwise.)

I said to my wife, wow, she would make a beautiful photo, but I was a bit nervous about asking people to take their photo, its always been a bit of a failing of mine, I see a beautiful subject or moment and then miss it because I was too embarrassed to ask.

So, my wife convinced me to turn the scooter around and I ask her, and thankfully she said yes. She made such a beautiful photo standing there in her Ei Katu (flower garlands worn around the head) and flowery dress.

A few months later, before I was about to leave the island, I thought she would appreciate a paper photo of herself to keep. So, I went and got printed a beautiful black and white photo of her and asked around where she lived.

She was in her garden watering her hibiscus flowers and beside her was a wheelbarrow full of weeds and dirt.

I went up to her, said Kia Orana, introduced myself and explained it was I who took a photo of her a while back, and would she like to see.

I showed her the photo, she looked at it with a puzzled expression on her face, then gave the photo back to me and said, “sorry I don’t know anyone who looks like her”.

I laughed quietly and said the photo was of her, she looked at he photo again puzzled and then threw the photo into her wheelbarrow amongst the weeds and carried on watering her garden.

To this day it still brings a smile to my face when I think about this story, and this photo is still one of my favourites from the Cook Islands.


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