Written by Wesley Klehm
The flight to Fiji was supposedly really bumpy and shaky but i slept the whole time. Sterling was impressed. We arrived in the airport concerned they might confiscate our honey from Oz. But the customs people didn’t really seem to care about anything so we just kind of walked through. There was a small band also waiting for us right off the plane. They were playing Fijian music on their little guitars and it was very nice.
We rented our car, a small Suzuki Swift and headed out for Crusoe’s retreat. We started out pretty upbeat and taking pictures. But, after about an hour of driving, the lack of sleep the night before caught up with us and we were exhausted. After passing heaps of hitchhikers and after another hour or so we finally found the turn off for the resort. We arrived! But we hadn’t. The access road to the resort was four kilometers over a mountain on a gravel road. Our little garbage car bottomed out every couple minutes. It’s amazing we didn’t destroy the car. And then finally, 4km later we arrived! For real!
We checked in and received our fijian necklaces. We arrived at about 9 in the morning so our room (bure) wasn’t ready yet so we went had breakfast and then went for a walk on the beach. We walked past a small village near the sea. They were having a church service as it was Sunday. We returned to the resort and went to our now readied room. It was nice and big with huge mosquito nets. We laid down to rest a little bit and ended up taking a 3 hour nap and missed lunch. We woke up and bummed in the room for a bit until afternoon tea. Tea was just some cake and tea. We walked around a little more and took some video of the water and beach with our new go pro camera. They turned out well and after adjusting some settings it was working great! We then went to have dinner and then played Bingo! The MC for bingo made up these funny rhymes for each letter he called out e.g., two fat ladies sat to wait, lucky number 88. After 3 games of bingo I finally won and received a Crusoe’s retreat sari! I gave it to Sterling and then we went to the room and crashed for the night.
Now by Sterling:
We met up with an Italian lady and her Argentian boyfriend the next morning to drive over to another retreat to go diving. So it was back up the gravel road from hell and on over to another gravel road from a deeper & darker portion of hell. Though for some reason, a group of young boys had decided to take a nap in the middle of the road. No, not the side of the road, or somewhere near the road… the actual middle of the road. After some honking – they woke, moved, and let us pass. The dive was over at Beqa Lagoon, world famous for shark diving.
But today we were just exploring the coral reef and a ship wreck or two near an area named 7 sisters. The first dive we went through some coral structures and tunnels and saw HUGE sea fans. On the second dive we penetrated a ship wreck. We also got to pet a sea turtle, discover what a nudibranch was, inspect a colony of sea horses, hand feed a school of fish, follow a few reef sharks, touch some anemone (apparently it is okay as long as you do not have an open wound), and collect an empty cowry shell. The Italian girl was a very experienced diver but her boyfriend got stuck on some coral and tried to ascend too quickly. It was a fun dive.
Suva was our goal for the next day. Suva has buildings that are higher than 2 stories!! We arranged with Litia (my former nanny) to meet at noon… somewhere. We finally decided that the holiday inn would be a good idea. Come 12:30 Litia and three of her children arrive! She look them out of school to meet us. So, we did it – we arranged to meet with them and made it happen (quite a feat in Fiji). We chatted all day, went to see the University where Linton worked, went to see the old house (where the President’s son now lives), and went to the handicraft market where we got three souvenirs for about 5 dollars. We were there all day and arrived back close to 7 p.m. but it was worth it to meet with Litia.