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Hop hop Island Hop!

Micronesian flag in the bag! Folded, packed away and time to move on. The next move would be Majuro of Marshall Islands fame, a place I’d been many times before, but my first time arriving on the United Airlines “island hopper”, that takes care of the American bit of the Pacific, and even the hula-skirt wearers of Hawai.

Pohnpei airport, where we were leaving from had a decent cafe, and even the holy grail of WiFi!!!! The lounge was sadly closed, but the bar was knocking our Asahi at $3 a piece. The Street Food approves of Micronesia!

Flight meal on United

The 13.44 flight from Pohnpei to Majuro would arrive at 19.44, 5 hours including the time difference. We’d be stopping at places, I just didn’t know where…

Well stop one came but an hour into the trip, Kosrae International Airport, a small part of Micronesia. Cool enough airport, and you can even smoke outside. Bravo! It also had a shop, and a two berth immigration window. I wish I could say more about Kosrae, guess I’ll google it at some point.

Now I’ll tell you something about flying on United Airlines, aside from the obvious (it’s shit), you can’t select a movie and start from the beginning, it’s done more lije a channel, that resets at each airport. On united Airlines Islands Hopper Service I was in a Hobbs and Shaw 1 hour loop hell. Do people actually like this shit? Again I tend to digress.

And off we were again! Not long into the next leg “dinner” was served. I was wondering if the 4 cubes of fruit on the flight from Palau to Micronesia could be topped, and it couldn’t. A small bag of fucking nuts. All the while showing off about the millions united airlines had sprang sponsoring Star Wars. The napkin costed more than the meal. A $500 plus flight and this was all they could muster. They’d have looked better serving nothing. It kind of annoys me how they do the whole passive aggressive “hope to see you again” shite. United, if I didn’t have to, you would be very much be avoided…

Even the radio announcements are too quiet on United, but I made out we’d be landing in 20 minutes. Another magical mystery tour! And I was at exactly the same point in the same movies….

The next stop was an interesting one, one I had read about, and one we could not get off at, …. Are the Marshall Islands an independent country? Well they still have a US Military base, or two that restrict access to people visiting. Another being the former paradise of Bikini Atol, which they nuked, a lot. Being a US military base the staff ensured they acted at top level of dickhead, photos were banned, and even standing up was seen as being a potential act of terrorism. It still amazes me how abjectly scared of terrorism the Americans are, but guns (that actually kill so many Americans) are just seen as normal. It truly does show you how effective propaganda is.

Island hopper

It’s funny how different it feels being on a plane that isn’t moving. Being that it had a set departure time it shouldn’t matter, but it just does. A bit like being in traffic, but worse.

I decided that watching the same movie sequence for the third time in a row would be like cruel and unusual torture, so embraced my inner sleep demon, and the three seats I’d nabbed via flight chicken.

Amazing our half empty plane became fully full at the military base stop. Great to see the military-industrial complex still keeping so many people in work.

Arriving in Majuro (for the fourth time) held a certain niceness to it, the unexplored is great, but sometimes you can’t beat familiarity, and Majuro has that for me now.

Oh and stop tip for Majuro International Airport, you can freaking smoke at the luggage carousel. So many olden time pleasures we miss these days.

Our ride was (thankfully) there to meet us and take us along to the Marshall Islands Resort (MRI) my first time staying here. Most years we stayed at Hotel Robert Reimers, the other hotel in Majuro. Alas there’s only so many times you, or your customers can get ripped off before you vote with your feet. Also MIR does have the best restaurant in Majuro, so that kinda helps anyway.

And now to make the most out of 18 hours in the Marshall Islands…

Written by Gareth

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