One thing Aitutaki had was an abundance of wildlife, one of my favourites were the hermit crabs. I’ve been a lover of hermit crabs for ages, and I used to have a huge tank with a dozen of them, all named after Harry Potter characters.
I was so excited to see them in the wild, in their natural environment, and by golly there were seriously thousands! All shapes and sizes!
When my nephew pointed out this little guy to me, I made all those cooing noises you make at a cute baby. LOOK AT HIM! He is SO tiny! Look at his little eyes! (Please excuse my horrid, horrid nail polish)
See, all sizes! Whilst out swimming in the lagoon, I noticed this huge dude scurrying across the sand and promptly ran over to check him out!
HUGE! Did you know that hermit crabs don’t breed in captivity? They are a pet you don’t have to worry about 2 turning into 20!
This is Aitutaki hospital! It’s tiny & quaint I was taken to the emergency room one night around 10pm. I guess it wouldn’t be me if I didn’t hurt myself some how.
Sandflies are EVIL, i’d been attacked the first night there and then promptly became rather obsessive about applying sprays, but they are persisitant little devils. On this night, around 10 nights in, I was super attacked. I’d tried everything, even having a local remedy made up for me to apply, but after trying to sleep, I ended up in tears.
I was itchy, I was bleeding from scratching, I was feverish. My nephew got my sister, she talked to the bar tended (& so very wonderful) Ned and decided to take me to the hospital.
It was kind of crazy, finding the hospital, which is sort of in the middle of the island, late at night, on unsealed and un-lit roads. But we made it. There were 2 nurses, and after taking my BP etc, they called the doctor in from home. We had to wait around 10 minutes for him to arrive. Ahhh, how things are different. I miss the laid back Island lifestyle so much already.
Turns out, I was having a slight allergic reaction to the sandflies (they aren’t bites, it’s actually caused by them peeing on you, icky!), and the coral cut I got a few days before from paddleboarding was a bit infected. I was loaded up with antihistamine and antibiotics and sent on my way.
If you ever go to Aitutaki, make sure you stop at MacNeds (above). Not only are their burgers amazing (I want one now), but the owners are by far the most amazing people. Ned tends bar at where we stayed, and on the night I went to hospital, he knocked off work and came straight up and stayed with us the whole time.