Jamie and Sophie's Adventure

Jamie Longmore and Sophie Jones travel the world

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Bula!

Today we leave Fiji unfortunately. We have had a great time here and fantastic weather. The day after we arrived we went on Feejee Experience with our guide Miri and driver Willie. The first day we had a BBQ on Natadola beach and then went to see a local village, learning about the Fijian culture as we went. After this we went sandboarding, which I didn't do this time due to it being a lot steeper than when we went before, increasing the risk of falling off, increasing the likelihood of permanently destroying my finger. Sophie did it several times though and was one of the few people who didn't crash or fall off. We spent the night on the Coral Coast, drank some kava, watched and did some dancing and of course sampled some of the local beer.
The next day, Sophie and a few of the others went on a 2-3 hour trek which I couldn't do again because of my finger (some parts are very slippery and you often fall). So I went on a long boat up the river and we met the rest of the group then did some tubing down to a waterfall for swimming. I hurt my finger whilst paddling, which then resulted in me getting caught in the rapids and scraping my spine against some rocks which wasn't too pleasant but no real damage done. We spent the night in Suva, the capital of the South Pacific. The only food on the menu was pizza with bizarre toppings including icecream.
Day three we stopped at an orphanage and talked to the little kids, most of them wanted to be rugby players and one little boy wanted to be a dentist (they had just had a talk about brushing your teeth from Dr Rabbit, a 6 foot bunny). They were very sweet and we gave them presents we had bought for them in town such as stationary and cards. Next we stopped at a remote village for a sevu-sevu ceremony. I should add that during these village visits I had to wear a sarong... so wrong.
I'll briefly tell you about a kava ceremony. Kava is made from a root and looks like muddy water (tastes like it too). The chief decides when to drink it, speaking through his official communicater. You clap before taking the bowl, shout 'Bula' which is their word for hello, amongst other things, then down the kava in one before handing the bowl back and clapping your hands three times. While the men had to sit around drinking this awful drink, the girls got to go and make jewellery. Kava is not alcoholic, the effect it has is to make you sleepy and it makes your tongue/lips tingle.
We then went on bili-bili (bamboo) rafts down the river and had a race, our raft came 2nd out of 3. Our overnight stop was on Volivoli Beach, Rakiraki - at the top of the island. It was very nice and had it's own beach. We all had a fair few beers and Bounty rum, took part in more dancing games, sang around a camp fire and had more kava which was so strong it was making me retch. Our driver, who was very funny, got ridiculously drunk, falling over and breaking his finger (it must have been broken at that angle). The next day he was still completely wasted so we had to get another driver out while he slept it off!
Sophie went diving in the morning of day four, our final day. She said it wasn't that good and there was no sign of the sharks that everyone else seemed to keep seeing. I of course couldn't go due to my finger... We went through some Bollywood film sets and learnt about the Indo-Fijian culture. The highlight of this day was stopping off at some natural hot pools and mud pools at the base of the Sabeto Valley. We had a great time on Feejee Experience and would reccommend it. We were lucky to have great guides and a really good group of people in our group.
That night we had a free nights accommodation, unfortunately it was in a 34 bed dorm at Smuggler's Cove! They were split into cubicles of 2 sets of bunks but there was just no room at all, amazingly it wasn't that noisy so we got a reasonable sleep. We went to the travel desk at 7am, not knowing where we wanted to go and by 7:15 we were on a bus taking us to the Yasawa ferry. The first island we went to was called Naviti, staying at White Sandy Beach resort. It was 3 hours by boat and we were greeted by all the staff playing us music and singing songs. We stayed here for 3 nights and loved it, really friendly people and we got to just relax on the beach or in our hammocks with the sun shining the whole time. We did some jewellery making, making coconut bracelets, shell necklaces, etc. Sophie went snorkelling a few times. Every evening after our meal we watched then participated in the Bula dance, ask me nicely and I may show you how to do it. After plenty of dancing we were always in the mood for some beer and got to make friends with the other guests.
We left Naviti and went to Kuata which was 1.5 hours back towards the mainland. It was quite nice here, though we had to change rooms as our toilet was blocked up and no light in the bathroom (the new room was much better). We did a trek to get a good view of the sunset and of course there was dancing and drinking games in the evenings.
Yesterday we came back to Nadi and later today we go on a 4x4 trip which was a free extra with our Feejee Experience trip, I think it will be more of the same, going to a village, swimming, etc. Our flight is at 10:30pm on 21st August and yet we arrive in LA at 1:50pm on 21st August, time travel! We're not sure where we are going in LA, possibly staying in Santa Monica but we don't really know anything about it. If anyone has been, please give us some tips. I'm sure we'll go and do the cheesy things such as have a photo in front of the Hollywood sign. Maybe we'll see some film stars.
See you all soon...

2 Comments:

  • At 4:38 AM, Dad said…

    Sounds like Fiji is a fun place to visit. Enjoy LA and we look forward to seeing you on Sunday. take care xx

     
  • At 2:52 PM, Anonymous said…

    Jamie sounds like the sooner you get home the better !! All these pussy excuses about your little finger !! dont tell me your not coming on tour as you may fall over coming out the pub ??? Don't worry son 3 days time you will be home and mummy can kiss it better !!!

    Look foward to catching up over a 'few' bevvies on tour mate. take it steady on your last leg of the tour and watch the finger !!

    Jez

     

Post a Comment

<< Home