Several years ago this month, I was in Tahiti. Being mildly perfume obsessed, I sought out a perfume to bring back with me and found one made from indigenous flowers on the island of Moorea. I'm now down to the last few drops and realize that while perfume is one of my favorite mementos from places I travel to, it's probably not the most practical. Until I can get back to the little shop located near the ferry dock on Cook's Bay, I will have to go out to Brooklyn and pay a visit to Christopher Brosius' shop, I Hate Perfume. He can make a custom blend for me based on that afternoon in Moorea, scented with gardenia flowers, tahitian vanilla and coconut. Having that scent is an exquisite way to remember the trip as it drifts further into the past... because like many travel experiences, what happened on the island stays on the island. Except when I wear that perfume.
Post script: Yes, it really is that beautiful. Yes, the water really is that blue. Yes, it is worth that very long flight. The food is mostly French and it is all incredible, as are the wines. I highly recommended that you travel to French Polynesia at least once in your life. And let me know if you go, so you can pick up some perfume for me.