Woke up early to bright blue skies and beautiful beach and was able to sit outside and have pancakes for breakfast. Shortly after Amy our guide for the four days, came bouncing up to reception, and introduced herself. When I saw the big bus was not sure what to expect, however we were soon told that there were just going to be four of us on the trip. The last 2 guests Dan and Toni were staying in the posh area of the Island we were on Viti Levu and was a bit of a drive but nice to see more of the island. Some of the bridges over to the man made island looked a bit dodgy but the driver seemed confident.
With all four guests on board we introduced ourselves to our little family. Amy our guide was keen to share lots of things about the villages and the town and pointed out the many houses that had been damaged by floods yet the families still lived there and were all happy dispite loosing there belongings. Amy also pointed out on the road side how people sold things in heaps and bundles and not by weight. The road sides had lots of people selling fresh fruit.
Having been to other third world towns before I was extremely pleased that everyone thought it was a good idea to stick together. We had enough time to get our shopping done in Nadi and much to the lads dislike we found a sarong they were happy to wear. The shop assistants were not to pushy, once you walked past them they left you alone. The supermarket was much different to what I expected, it actually seemed to have more of the random stuff that Lidle has in than food. Thankfully I was not alone in the search for food for lunch, nobody managed to find anything suitable so it was lunch at a resort.
After a short drive to the beautiful Natadola beach we headed for the sand. The beach and sand was beautiful, however the shades of blue nearest our beach were darker and soon found it very rocky and was covered in sharp coral and we ended up moving round the beach. The sand was to hot to walk on there was not much shade.
After trying 2 more spots we finally found a passable area of sea to stand in. Having been sensible and put sun screen on earlier I was first in the sea. Having been to Oz twice and not seen one snake, saw 3 waters snakes in 5mins. That turned out to be least of our problems. A security guard approached Toni and mentioned there were Jelly fish and guests being stung the others decided to leave the sea much to my disappointment. We headed back to the bar and got a bar snack and ice water. We did not venture back in sea and ended up sat in the shade due to the heat.
Sadly it continued to rain and the hotel was lots of outdoor chalets without signs. After trekking round we finally got to our dorm. Inside the tall wooden hut were 10 beds each with mosquito nets, which made it very cosy to sleep and I felt like a baby in a Moses basket. The showers and toilets were out side and not the best, but they served there purpose. We wandered round for Carva ceremony at 6ish, of course it 6.30pm by the time it started. We all entered to lean-to and took of our jandles, thongs or shoes. The man in charged changed our seating positions as the females had to sit in corners with legs at an angle. He then told us all about the cava plant and how in villages it is illegal to drink alcohol and if it is found the police will shame them. Cava they said was a relaxing drink that all villagers drank. It was made from the root of Cava plant. The older the root the better the flavour. The power was placed in a linen square and tied up. Water was then added, the ball of powered was then lifted in and out of a giant pestle and motor till it reached the right colour.
Even though it had been raining we still had another beautiful sunset. The menu for dinner was less than exciting 6 items on the menu, although reasonably price I could not get over how a bowl of green salad could cost more than the other meat and fish dishes. On principle I went for the pasta, which was fettuccine, in cream with a little garlic, not very appetizing or tasty, but it was food. The others were none too impressed either and desserts were another let down so we were all hungry.
Given it was the quiet season there were not a lot of guests. The other lad that was on his own attempted an early night, however ended up getting lost and taking the wrong turn and was back to where he started. The night’s entertainment was international sand crab racing.
Ten crabs from different countries with different names, and you had to bid for them, well you chose to! The process was long and drawn out (people spend money at the bar) but soon 10 crabs were allocate. The man brought down the crabs in a bucket and put them in the centre of the circle. They all had numbers on and the bucket was lifted after a countdown. My crab never woke up but finally 2 crossed the lined, and it was over. After all that I headed to bed, found the room on 3rd attempt after going in 3 wrong rooms. My next trip outside in the middle of the night to the toilet was not fun, had to use a different door, went for some toilet roll and 3 skinks ran out which made me scream! I then spend 10 mins trying to find my room and got back into my cosy Moses basket.