Life Lately: Back from travels and trying to catch up

Life Lately: Back from travels and trying to catch up

Hello hello!

It hasn’t been too long since I last blogged, but a lot has happened, that’s for sure.

One of my recent life highlights is the 3-week travel around French Polynesia with Ian and his parents. I started blogging about it, but I have a bunch more to update on! We visited 4 islands in 3 weeks, and spent 5 days sailing around Raiatea and Taha’a. It was an epic vacation-slash-engagement-moon!

I got back from that trip in early July, and was home for just a week before embarking on a different kind of adventure, sailing on the research vessel E/V Nautilus! I also just returned from that trip earlier this week. It was actually a work trip that both Ian and I got to be a part of (me, from the National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa, and him, from the National Park Service in American Samoa). That was a super cool thing to be a part of, and I’m so excited to share some photos and takeaways from that experience soon.

Other life updates that I don’t remember mentioning yet:

I got a new camera! Well, I actually got it a few months ago right around my work trip in April but I don’t recall mentioning it yet. It’s a Sony A7III and it’s name is “Three” (don’t ask lol). I used to be a Canon shooter, and I hesitated a lot before finally deciding to switch to Sony’s mirrorless system. My thoughts on mirrorless? I’m a huge fan. It’s so much more compact which is great for traveling, the build-quality is great and feels sturdy, and the focus and clarity is impressive. I got a silicone rubber skin for Three and it makes it feel more rugged and weatherproof which I like.

We also got a drone – the DJI Mavic Air. It was a bit of an impulse purchase because I was preparing for our sailing trip in French Polynesia, and convinced Ian we needed to get one (because when else are we going to be sailing in French Polynesia, and don’t we want to get some cool aerial photos?!). Hahah, turns out we only used it a couple times while we were in French Polynesia because the tradewinds were extra strong and we didn’t want to risk losing the drone. I’m too much of a wuss to lose another drone, and now Ian’s really the only drone pilot.

And other than that, I’m still snapping away. I’ve done a few photo shoots in the last couple of month: a portrait session with Mareike, and some lifestyle-product shoots with Pacific Elegance. I’ll try to upload them soon. But for now, I’m binge-watching Versailles, reading Siddhartha, and trying to get my motivation back on track!

A brief travel journal of Pape’ete, Tahiti

A brief travel journal of Pape’ete, Tahiti

Pape’ete, Tahiti

Maeva and bienvenue to the tropical city of Pape’ete in Tahiti.

We had just arrived from cold Auckland to this warm paradise, greeted with leis by Rick and Polly at the Fa’aa airport. Family trip! Now the vacation really begins (again)!

View from my window. Dusty pinks, oranges, and deep greens.

Ian thinks the mountains are a cloud forest.

Polly and Ian walking around the city after brunch.

The next day, we walked around the harbor, and I could barely believe my eyes. Mo’orea was just staring at us right across the way. 

This is the ferry we would take in the next couple of weeks from Tahiti to Mo’orea.

Just walking around. Dipping our toes in the water. Looking at va’a.

Impressed to see a coral garden right in the harbor by the quay. The fish looked happy.

I couldn’t tell if it was summer for students because the boardwalk area was packed with kids and teenagers all just hanging out, blasting music on their huge boomboxes, laughing and smiling like they were on vacation too.

We checked out the Robert Wan Pearl Museum and learned that tahitian pearls are all nucleated to achieve its roundness, and can take up to 4 years to develop in the oyster.

This is the largest pearl in the museum.  It’s not perfectly round but still stunning.

This is the second largest pearl there, but the largest perfectly round pearl. I can’t even imagine what this would cost.

We were only in Tahiti for a brief time, and my favorite spot is hands down the Pape’ete Marche, but I’m saving that for another blog post ;).
Stay Tuned! My French Polynesisan adventure continues to Raiatea, Taha’a, and Mo’orea.

Looking surprisingly fresh today even after speed walking back to the hotel from the Papee’ete Marche and Tahiti Pearl Market where I bought some prezzies. Had to rush back to get our stuff and walk to the ferry. Next stop, Mo’orea!