Our tour of Australia and New Zealand was over. We could have come home, but we decided to add on the Fiji extension. It was kind of billed as R & R following the trip. I am so glad we went to Fiji because it was just what we needed. Being on the go constantly, three days of peace and quiet sounded wonderful.
We left our Tour guide at the Aukland airport and flew to Fiji. She did not travel with us and we would be getting a new guide once we landed.
As with most of our plane trips this also took 3 hours which meant that we were now three hours closer to home as well. We landed at the Nadi (pronounced Nandi – I know there is no”n” in the spelling but that is how it is pronounced). We met Dan, out guide, and headed to our hotel. Of course it was an ocean front resort.
Here are some pics of the resort .
On our first full day, Dan took us on a tour of a local market. We were set to have a Fijian feast on the beach that night so he wanted us to see some of what we would be served.
After the marked tour we went to visit a traditional Fiji village. We were greeted by the men during a welcoming ceremony. We had to pick a chief and a spokesman from our group to participate in the ceremony. This included learning the greeting, learning how to clap (not what we think of as normal clapping), and the drinking of kava when it was offered. My friend, Bill, was picked as chief and I was asked to be spokesman. We both agreed and our guide took us through the ceremony.
Here are the men of the village in the meeting room.
Luckily, we were given chairs. I am glad because I am not sure I could have gotten up gracefully we we had to sit on the floor. Bill and I learned our parts and all went well. Because of this ceremony, we can now go back any time and be considered members of the village.
I do want to say one thing about the kava. It is a kind of grain mixed with warm water and served in a coconut shell. My opinion, it looks like muddy water and tastes like it as well. Being the spokesman I had to finish it without making a face. Hard to do but I did it.
After the meeting we got a tour of the village. It started with a coconut demonstration. We were shown how to split a coconut. We were given straws to taste the coconut milk. We were also given coconut to sample. There were two kinds, brown and green.
A tour of the grounds followed.
Each village contains a church. At this particular village it is a Methodist Church.
This section of the church is reserved for the chief and the children. Children sit with the chief as a way of behavior control during services.
That night we had dinner on the beach and were served some of the items we had seen at the market that morning.
After dinner we were provided with entertainment .
This ended our first day on Fiji. I know it seems like a lot of going, but the pace was so nice and slow that it was relaxing.
Next week we will bring this trip to an end. Finally!