On our way back to the Wellesley Wednesday night we ran into the owner (or so we thought) of a little red boat. Birch was dying to snorkel out in the channel where all the big fish hangout. You could pay the resort an arm and leg and they would haul you out there but we were sure we could find someone local to take us out for much cheaper. After a bit of negotiating Birch arranged for the red boat to pick up the four of us at our resort at 7:30 am Thursday morning for $10 Fijian. Score!!!
The next morning on Fijian time (always relaxed and late) these two guys came up to our shore ready to take us out. Apparently the guy that made the deal with Birch was not the owner of the boat but a friend of the owner. These two nice Fijian-Indians were happy to take us snorkeling while they spear fished in the channel.
Click here to watch: http://youtu.be/a2YTGdaH3eQ
As we were leisurely pushed out to sea the two guys started telling us how we had to be REALLY careful to not go out of the channel or we could be pulled to sea. My mom and I started to get a little nervous. Birch and my dad jumped right in (since we only had two pairs of snorkel gear my mom and I decided to stay in the boat and wait to trade with the boys). We told the guys that they could go ahead and start fishing and we would just enjoy watching them. They started talking in their native language and then told us that they were going to stay right there and not fish because they would get in big trouble if something happened to my dad and Birch. They went on to tell us that a while ago they had taken out a husband and wife and they had been pulled to sea. The guys had to go back to the resort to get a bigger boat to rescue them. The couple ended up being fine but were exhausted. Wow...by the time it was my turn to snorkel I wasn't feeling so excited anymore.
Birch held my hand the whole time while we swam around. I got a little panicky as the water got REALLY deep and the fish got really big. The Fijian-Indian guys told us that if we saw sharks to just turn around and go the other way. Needless to say, I didn't last too long before I was ready to hop back in the boat. It was a cool experience but I think I've decided I am more of a shallow water snorkel kind of girl. As we all loaded back in the boat the guys asked us who was paying the rest of the money. After some broken English being passed back and forth we realized that they thought we were paying them $10 Fijian/each person. We did a little negotiating (especially because we were just about out of Fijian money) and settled on $30 for the four of us. Still a great deal but not as awesome as we originally had thought.
|The day before we had seen a little sign at a hut in the nearby village for a Fijian Massage for $40 Fijian/hour. Massage on the beach...YES PLEASE!!!|
|As you can see I did get sun burned from my hour of snorkeling the day before. This was even with a heavy dose of sunscreen. I can't imagine what I might have looked like had we had more beach time.|
Need I say more?
Birch and I soaking up our last bit of beach time before heading back to Nadi.
I LOVE SARA!!! (I'm sure that is what he was thinking)
|The only people we really saw on the beach were the locals collecting coconuts that would fall down at night. So different thinking about their daily life chores/jobs compared to us.|
Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy
I feel blessed to have been raised by such wonderful parents. I love how they interact with my children and are such wonderful examples of Christlike service.
Trying to suck in every last scent of my FAVORITE flower -- in Hawaii we call this flower a Plumeria. In Fiji these are called Frangipani flowers. I LOVE THEM!! I have a plant of them in my bathroom that has not yet bloomed -- it's been six years. I'm not giving up!
After packing up our stuff from the resort we stared driving toward Nadi. We stopped in Sigatoka to do some last minute shopping. This man really wanted to welcome us in the true Fijian way -- a kava ceremony. We explained to him that we didn't drink kava and he said, "No worries my brother drink your kava." After making Birch Chief and singing some chants they drank up the kava. Birch ended up buying a beautiful Bula Shirt (like Hawaiian shirt) from this little shop.
We arrived at Denarau Island, just about 20 minutes from Nadi, just in time for Birch to cross off his last Fijian Bucket List item -- golfing with my dad at the Westin Resort. They knew they were cutting it really close for having enough time to do a full course so they dropped off my mom and I at the resort and ran over to the golf registration desk. The guy told Birch that they needed button-up shirts in order to golf at this course. Birch said, "No problem," and ran out to the truck and dug in his suitcase for a button-up shirt. When he got back the guy said, "you need closed toed shoes to play at this course." Ugh...they only had flip flops and sandals. The guy ended up throwing in two pairs of golf shoes and Birch and my dad were off.
So sharp looking! The two had such a good time golfing and did it all on turbo speed. By the end of the time they could barely see their ball...though it sounds like light wasn't their only problem. They lost four of their six balls in the water.
|Birch gets a kick out of this photo every time he looks at it -- yikes...apparently his form is horrendous.|
Indosesian Waxy Ginger Flower
The Westin Resort was gorgeous and very well kept up. It was pricey ($210/night Fijian) so we shared a room with my parent's that night. The bed was so luxurious but I slept horrible in fear that we would wake up late and miss our early morning flight to New Zealand. But who can't fall asleep smiling after seeing a sight like this