Sunday, February 15, 2015

Valentine's Day with Robert Louis Stevenson

Robert Louis Stevenson Museum on 300 acres
Yesterday was Valentine’s Day (Saturday is also our Preparation or P-day) and we decided to get out and see more of the area.  About 5 miles from our apartment at the base of Mount Vaea, is the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum (author of “Treasure Island” and other novels and poems).  Stevenson spent the last 5 years of his life in a large homestead that is now a museum.   He died unexpectedly at the age of 44 in 1894.  To show their love for Stevenson, the Samoan people cut a path to the top of the mountain for his burial.   

Start of the hike - full of hopes and dreams

Rustic steps along parts of the trail

Are you kidding me? 
The path, called the “Road of Loving Hearts” has two ways up and down – one steep and slippery and the other one steeper.  We took the short one (1/2 mile) up and were ready to lie down and die next to his tomb when we reached the top.  We finally caught our breath, took a few pictures and headed back down the longer path (1 ½ miles) that turned out to be narrow, slippery and with a very steep drop-off on one side.  The jungle terrain rivaled anything I have seen on TV - pretty, but also buggy, hot, humid, and moss growing on everything.  We were definitely challenged by the hike.  We were feeling our age, when we heard several of the Samoans that passed us say they did it several times a week for exercise... 
RLS Tomb at the top of Mt Vaea
Inland view from the top
We made it!

A fairly rare site - a cruise ship in the harbor
At the end - where's the water and the A/C? 
Cleaned up and ready to eat
 That afternoon (after a shower, a gallon of water and a nap) we went to Giordano’s for a late lunch.  It is one of about 6 places where we will eat, including McDonald’s.  (As an aside, this has been a big adjustment to us, since we ate out almost every day in the States).  It was our first time there.  We had salad, pizza and dessert.  It was very good, but a little pricey (about $46).  Although not air-conditioned, we had a good breeze and enjoyed the atmosphere.  And best of all, we were with our Valentine.
Great Pizza

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