Joe woke up yesterday morning feeling pretty awful. Since the only thing we did different for the last number of days was dinner the previous night, our guess was food poisoning. He spent most of the day sleeping, then we got a ride to the airport.

Our flight left on time and was about 3 hours. He didn't feel great, but made it without a problem. We took the 'super shuttle' to the hostel we're staying at. It was $37NZD, but from what we could find out about the buses, it was cheaper than that... The bus system in Auckland is very confusing.

Anyway, the hostel is nice, though last night a group came in and was basically right outside our window (open window) being pretty loud at 12:30. Apparently it takes three Brits to help a drunk girl... Anyway, we walked to a nearby, very small market store to find some oatmeal. Joe felt pretty bad after that walk, so since then we've just been hanging out in the room and trying to figure out what our plan is.

Joe did find out that camping is apparently the exact same here as in the states. He's tempted to get a camper van type thing and then just sell it before we leave. That's apparently very common. The only kicker is, I have to drive since he lost his license with his wallet. Not only that, but they drive on the left here. We'll see if we go that route or not.


[ 1 comment ] ( 4 views )
Boat Trip 
We were supposed to head back to Nadi at 11 via small boat. It rained most of that night and was still raining when we got up. During breakfast I got a call from Donna, the lady that arranged everything. She told us that the small boat wasn't coming because of the weather, so she was going to book us on the big boat. We would have to pay them, then she would refund us the $120 we paid for the other boat. Unfortunately, she never told us where to meet her when we got off the boat.

We got to Nadi and had no idea where we were. It was a port with a bunch of shops, so once we realized she probably wasn't there, we found lunch at a pizza place (incredibly good pizza). There was a complimentary shuttle for the boat that could take us to the airport, but it wasn't leaving again until 3 and it was before 2. We finally just paid the $20 to a taxi to get to the hotel.

It turns out Donna was waiting for us where the complimentary shuttle would have let us off. Of course we had no idea she wanted us to take it or even where to get off if we had taken it. But we got there anyway.

It poured like crazy last night and is still sprinkling this morning. We're staying at the hotel until 2 and then getting a ride to the airport. We did get our refund, fortunately.


Mana Island.

The green building on the left is where we stayed.

A view of Mana from higher up.

The island where Castaway was filmed.

[ 1 comment ] ( 8 views )
This morning we decided to sign up for the trip to the uninhabited island where Castaway was filmed. There were 9 people in a relatively small fishing boat. The snorkeling was great. Lots of fish and the coral was very interesting and colorful. When we left there, we headed for 'Sand Bar', which is basically just a small sand island not too far from Mana. The water was very shallow there, but there were quite a few fish. We even saw what must have been a huge lobster. It was under a rock so all we could see was its antennae. It turned out to be a good way to spend our morning and early afternoon.

Unfortunately, Joe ended up burned, even though he completely covered up. He had long sleeves on and long pants. He even put sunscreen on everything that was exposed, but he still ended up with burnt hands. I'm stuck with burnt lips and burnt thighs, but not terrible.


[ add comment ]
We took the overloaded boat (16 people on a small fishing vessel, which would normally seat 8 comfortably) the 45 minutes to Mana Island. We are staying at a hostel, but feels more like a camp/hotel. We do not have access to a kitchen (like a normal hostel) and the meal times are set. Our private room is in a building with 2 other rooms, down a trail that takes a couple minutes to walk. It looks like everyone here uses rain catchment for showers and other water.

They offer bottled water for $5, but we really dislike buying bottled water. That night, it poured! We waited until it rained for a while and then we used one of our empty bottles to fill with fresh rain water. The rain definitely helps some since it is sweltering here. Between 10 and 6, it is like a sauna. Swimming in the ocean helps, but the water tends to be like bath water, so it's not super refreshing. :)

The internet costs $10/hour (even wifi) so work has been sparse. Our time in Fiji has mostly been spent hiding from the sun and the heat. We've been spending the afternoons in our room napping or reading. The snorkeling we have done is completely different from what we saw in Hawaii. They have 'soft' coral, which moves in the water and looks very neat. The variety of fish is pretty different also. They tend to be a lot smaller than the ones we saw most often in Hawaii.

Thursday morning, we walked around the island and were pretty upset about the amount of garbage, mostly water bottles. We're not sure if it's mostly local pollution, or ending up on the island from afar. The locals use the water bottles for all sorts of things. We saw them as garden bricks (when filled with sand) and rope fencing (painted white and blue).

This evening, we decided to try swimming right outside the hostel. We thought it would just be weeds. There was actually a lot out there! For dinner tonight, we had traditional Fijian food. There was tarot, tapioca (the root I think), a yummy salad, a rice thing and fish. It was quite good.


[ add comment ]
What a Headache 
We woke up this morning and Joe went out to find out what is going on. We went back to working with Donna, the woman. Also, we didn't go out to the island today, so she refunded us one day's worth.

Joe spent the morning trying to all the credit card companies and get things sorted. We finally got one of the cards to send an emergency card to an address we have set up in New Zealand. It only lasts for a month, so we'll see how it will go from there.

We spent some time talking with a few of the other couples staying here. One couple from England just arrived this morning. We wanted to head to the nearby supermarket, so we asked if they wanted to join us. They did and it was fun chatting with them because they're essentially doing what we are, but backwards. So, we learned about a few areas that we're looking to go to.

A family that's staying here (they're from Switzerland) pointed us to an Indian/Thai restaurant nearby. We had dinner there, which was excellent.

We're heading to the island tomorrow. I feel better about everything today. Hopefully it works out.


PS Here are a couple older photos since I slacked on taking and uploading photos.

This was in the trunk of our rental car on the Big Island in Hawaii.

Our view from the place we stayed in Honolulu.

Two kittens that hang out in the patio area at our hotel in Fiji.

[ add comment ]

Back Next