The Adventure In FIJI!
The time is 7:22pm and I am 30 feet from shore moored to a short 1 inch line that keeps me comfortable away from shore. I glance to my right and see the hot spring flow into the ocean giving off a fog of hot steam. Then in front of me I see our new friends form the UK and say hi “HI”. The day has been full of rain and yesterday it was full of rain. The weather is cool around 80 degrees and high humidity. As I slowly spin in a circle in a ballet twirling around with all the other sailboats in our little mooring field I smile knowing I am not going anywhere to night shacked to a mooring line. Now I am reminiscing with my crew or my good friends about our adventure yesterday. But before I can tell the tail I must fill my blue bubbly glass with more Gin and Tonic with a splash of fresh lemon, so no limes in Fiji. Nobody knows why there are no limes but I like the lemon as it really spices up the GIN. Did you know that Fiji make a great London Dry Gin that is better then there Bounty Rum? Well it is quite a find and I feel like I am floating around in the Gin perched on a ice cube looking up at the cloudy sky smiling hoeing for a glimpse of the star sky for the night.
So I digress back to the discussion of yesterday’s adventure. After a very stress free encounter with immigration, customs, health, and bio security I am now very much a sailor in Fiji and would like to say thank you to all officers for such a wonderful experience clearing into Fiji. Anyway back to the adventure, we decided to join our friends Jory and Lauren on a bus trip to the north side of Vanua Levu Island to the city of Labasa. The trip took 3 hour to get there packed into a bus with local people for only 5 dollars Fiji which is about $2.50 USD. Anyway we toured through the bus windows as we stopped every few miles to drop off locals and saw the landscape of the island. High mountains and fields of sugar Cain covered the land. Houses made of tin and wood with pigs and cows were the norm. All the local Fiji people were very friendly and warm. When we arrived in Labasa I was taken back by the overwhelming amount of the India population that over whelmed the local population by my guess five to one. The city was very busy with fast moving traffic and shops filled with everything from raw beef to vacuums if you need both at the same store.
After doing some window shopping and seeing what the city had to offer we wondered to the fresh market and walked through the endless buildings and tents of fresh fruit, vegetables, and spices. From there we walked across the street to a local gathering place were a man offer us to buy a live goat for $300 dollars per goat, we said no thanks. But a local women did convince us to have a seat and drink Kava “Latin for intoxicating pepper, is a crop of the western Pacific, the roots of which are used to produce a drink with mild sedative and anesthetic properties”. The kava tested like wood chips but did make my mouth go numb and I felt very relaxed. I enjoyed our conversation and wondered how I would feel in the morning after drinking local water and brown root juice. Good news I felt fine the morning considering the verity of local food consumed yesterday. So after a day of window shopping, drinking kava, local Roti wraps, and people we boarded the return bus at 3;30pm and made it back by 7PM. After a day of hot buses, food and adventure I enjoyed my first hot shower in 4 months that evening. I forgot how wonderful a hot shower is, O the small things in life.
Like normal today was spent it on boat project. I spent a full day spelunking in the bellows of Draognsbane bilges changing out a float switch and cleaning the nasty grease from her bilges with the help of Jade and Jess. Ben, bless his brave soul buffed the hull of Draongsbane in the rain standing in a dinghy holding onto a power buffer. Anyway Dragonsbane is looking closer to ship shape and I am looking forward to our passage to New Zealand in a few weeks. But first we have to cruiser Fiji and see the hidden things that she holds under the sea in the Jungles.
You never fail if you never quite!