A handful of travellers touched down on Tuvalu's tarmac, seemingly unaware they had landed between welcome ceremonies for two international leaders.
While Prime Minister Scott Morrison and New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern's arrivals and departures at the tiny atoll nation for the forum were in sync, the same could not be said for their receptions.
Australia was singled out as an outlier in negotiations on climate change, working hard to remove mention of coal and a climate crisis, while the Kiwis were hailed as heroes.
Despite providing significant financial support to the region, Tuvalu's prime minister Enele Sopoaga warned Mr Morrison that it wasn't enough for the Pacific on climate.
Aid money isn't an excuse not to reduce emissions, he told reporters before Mr Morrison arrived.
But Australia succeeded in watering down the forum's statement on climate change, with "coal" replaced by "fossil fuels" and no urgent calls to immediately ban all new coal mines and coal-fired power plants.
After more than 12 hours of negotiations Mr Sopoaga showed his frustration, pointing to Australia as the nation which didn't agree with the rest.
The leaders tried to save face early the next morning by fronting the media together, but cracks showed when Tuvalu's leader said Mr Morrison was concerned with saving the Australian economy while he was trying to save his people.
Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama took to Twitter to express his disappointment, saying the forum's final statement had "watered-down climate language".
The Australian Defence Force shuttled the majority of forum-goers to the island, with two of Ms Ardern's press conferences momentarily interrupted by their thunderous rumbles.
It's for when the big shiny one breaks down, she said during one pause, making a jab at the official jet Mr Morrison arrived on.