Feejee Time

The final hurrah for Rish and my adventures came round soo fast, too fast in fact. Coming over to Fiji was bitter sweet. I mean who’d say no to a beach front villa looking out onto paradise with the friendliest neighbours possible? .. But the view had a price… 6 nights with sun, sea and sand and then Rish would be heading home on a 24 hour flight…. Leaving me behind. 🙁

And by leave me behind, I do mean, I’m going to VEEEGAS! Yeeee baaaby!

Honestly though, Fiji has been nothing short of magical… The first night we arrived we had to stay in Nadi so had booked a cheap hostel only 10 mins from the airport. It uh, did the job; clean, functional and somewhere we were happy to leave the next morning… Not wanting to miss out on any time in Fiji,  we headed across the road to a nicer hostel which had a fire show… Which is pretty much the entertainment staff dancing around holding a burning stick on the beach Lol… Can’t lie, we were still pretty excited to be in 30* heat being entertained by, well, anything but a caravan!

Despite the thrilling evening, we were up bright and early to get on the Yasawa flyer which is a 5 hour boat journey passing through Fiji’s gorgeous islands dropping off backpackers on the way. Rish and I were in for the long haul though. I had lived up to my Princess Sparkle nickname and selected the best resort in the ‘backpacker’ range… And then persuaded Rish that we NEEDED to stay in the premium beach front villas too! … Well it was our last week!!

Our 5 nights in the resort simply put was magical. Everything from, waking up in the morning to the white sand, clear blue sea with the coral just a stones throw away to the outdoor shower which had an inexplicable overwhelming tranquility not to mention the lively communal evening dinner and entertainment. It’s hard to select the best part.

The resort was definitely a romantic destination so the night time activities were slightly tame but still very interesting…….. oi get your head out the gutter… what I meant was the resort’s entertainment! They had crab racing on the first night, yeup that’s right, we hunted round the beach for the fastest crab who would win us $20 at the bar! Ok Rishi hunted round, as if I was going to touch a crab… eww… it was all to no avail though, unfortunately our selection did not even move from the starting point! The Fijian evening was awesome on the other hand, you could feel the energy from the local village people who entertained us with music and dancing… Rishi was thrown around by one of the ‘larger than life’ village ladies …. happy to share pictures for that if anyone wants to see!!  There was also movie night, where the resort put up a big screen on the beach and we sat there on the hand woven mats munching away on the popcorn watching our chosen chick flick that night, Love Actually.

Well, we can blame the movie choice on Anna! One of the reasons that Fiji was so awesome, was the fun people we met. Every night dinner is served on the long tables and so you sit with other guests from the resort. One night we happened to be seated with Anna and Tom and Jen and Brinn. We bonded over our desire for ice-cream, thinking up crazy ways of how we would get our hands on the magnums, because our resort didn’t serve any. Luckily we didn’t follow through, or else one or more of us would either have been eaten by a shark or be bending over for soap in prison…. Nice! 🙂

Our other biggest concern was working out how we could make sure we had to do the  the least possible movement and yet enjoy the beach to its full potential… Fiji had made us lazy… Caaammooon, it’s Fiiiji Tiiime…

Ok, so we did get off our lazy butts sometimes. Basket weaving, which was actually making bamboo leaf bracelets was an activity we considered manageable… Works of art these bracelets are I tell you. A whole afternoon spent making those bad boys! Who would have thought it would be so strenuous and time consuming?! Anywho, spurred on by the adrenalin from that activity, Rishi and I did also venture out for some snorkelling one morning and even visited the village for the Sunday church service… I think Anna’s main activity was feeding Charlie the dog that week, while Jen and Brinn actually outshone us by snorkelling every day!! That’s hard work I tell you.. Trust me, all of that activity seemed like a chore, compared to lying in our hammock, reading the Godfather and of course interspersing that with napping and eating. Could life get any sweeter?

How could I not have mentioned the actual food?! Ok, so being the only veggies that week, the Fijian hospitality was definitely evident with the Chef coming to check the evening menu with us every day and even supplying that extra spicy kick for our Indian palette. Apart from the dinners, the muffins we kept forgetting to steal from breakfast every morning, probably because we were too lethargic from the pancakes, definitely helped pad out the belly and lets not forget my daily dose of Mediterranean pasta despite the choice of Thai curries and the perfectly crunchy cassava chips… YUM YUM!

Fiji will definitely have a soft spot in our heart or perhaps my stomach (eek!) and especially thanks to our Fijian lazy companions. We will definitely be heading over to see Tom and Anna in Germany for more eating and antics. Jen, Brin, you coming along? I’ll get the Cornettos, you bring the Magnums! 🙂

Anywho, I have to say bye for now as Rishi is leaving me to go home…. :'( and I’ve got to make my way to the other terminal to catch my flight to Vegas… I can’t believe these 4 months are already over. We came here thinking this was a once in a lifetime trip, but the travel bug has been fed… next stop…. ?

p.s. you’ll be pleased to know that we did get our ice-cream on the boat back to the mainland, phew! 🙂

1770

A not so busy town famous for being the 1st place discovered by Captain Cook in 1770 (ah-ha!!) But let’s be honest the only reason any of us backpackers come here is because of Scooteroo..

Scooteroo is where we all don the cool leather biker jackets, tattoo ourselves up with fake transfer tatts and head off on scooters in hunt of kangaroos and potato wedges… Yes, it is fun.. Except if you keep accelerating when you’re supposed to brake! (I did have to give in and get on the back of the leaders bike at one point but at least I got to see more roos?!) It’s not funny and not as easy as you may think guys!! Honest. 🙁

Then again, Rish managed it perfectly well and was zooming around at full speed of 70km/hr! Agaaa!

Here are some bad ass pictures of us…

Looks gorgeous right? Yeup, it was! Unfortunately the weather went a lil sour today.. Hmm, maybe a lot sour, to the extent that there are mini flash floods around the area.. Eek!.. So we thought, let’s go surfing. Narleeey dude!

Well you’re gonna get wet anyway so what’s a little extra rain and super strong winds in the grand scheme of things?!

We don’t have any photos given the CRAZY weather but I do have a cut on my knee from hitting the rocks while trying to hold on to my surf board against the strong currents and whooshing wind… Yet, despite the cut bleeding down my leg, I couldn’t help but want to get right back in and have another go… Surfing is SO much fun.. The hardest part is fighting your way out of the waves and then it’s just like… ‘WEEEE’. Haha, good description?

Rishi managed to stand for a few seconds which is an impressive achievement in those conditions! But we know that tomorrow, we are going to be aching.. It really is a workout and a half. In fact, I think Rishi has fallen asleep in our room because he left for a shower a very long time ago..!! Then again, there’s not much else to do around here so he may as well rest up…

In the meantime, perhaps I’ll master table tennis and hustle him .. Or actually may just veg out and watch a movie in cinema room… Hmm, I’ll let you guess what I’ve decided!

Catch ya later.

P.S. Party at Beaches hostel tonight.. Let’s go!!

Welcome to the East Side

Woop! Woop! On to the sunny, gorgeous beaches of the East Coast.

Actually it had been raining incessantly in Cairns for the last 2 weeks so when we arrived and saw the weather report for glorious, baking hot clear skies, we were ecstatic. Our plan was to stay in Cairns for 2 days then move on but aiming to catch a different Whitsundays boat we cut our time down to a day .5.

Obviously when in Cairns you have to go to the Great Barrier Reef, so we booked on to the coolest sounding boat, Passions! When we arrived at the Reef Terminal we realised it was a popular choices as 80 backpackers were shepparded on to a medium sized catamaran… But the muffins and tea on entry made any worries about over crowding disappear.

In fact, the tour was absolutely awesome. The staff were really friendly, the food was good, the people were in a great mood and we went diving! Wooooh!!

We had no intention of diving on the tour but we were convinced pretty easily by Simon, one of the staff who remembered all 80 passengers names (I KNOOW!) To at least give the 5 minute trial a go… Well what’s the worst that could happen?
After being geared up and literally dragged to the water’s edge with the heavy oxygen cylinder on our backs, we ‘walked’ into the water to practice breathing with the oxygen mask.

I’ll be honest, it was pretty hard going getting used to breathing with the pump while on the surface of the ocean water. Funny thing is I was less scared about the process of diving than the actual worry of the fish touching me… Ye, I know, totally mental!

So, as I floated about telling our instructor that perhaps I’m not cut out for this, he suggested that perhaps he would take me for a swim and if I get used to the breathing we would consider the diving… Sounds fair!

Off we went; Rishi holding one of Simon’s hands and me the other! Haha…. Think Rishi kinda enjoyed it.. But before I could even consider the possibility of Rishi abandoning me for Simon, the views of the coral and amazingly colourful fish took my attention and I realised we were already a few metres underwater! Simon had been secretly taking the air out of our jackets without us even noticing. I blew my ears out and headed even further down. It was a phenomenal experience, like wandering through an incredibly interactive aquarium.

I got to touch some gooey coral, see a shark..-like fish, get up close and perhaps too personal with some stingrays and of course ‘find nemo’! Rishi and I were so excited and thrilled from the experience that we signed up for a second longer and deeper dive in the afternoon.. Unfortunately we just missed seeing a shark but who cares?! … We went diving! Wooh!

The rest of the boat trip was wicked too; sunbathing on deck, cheese and biscuits, tea and cookies and games and magic tricks! Definitely would recommend this tour and if you’ve never dived…. DO IT!! Nehal’s already promised to take me out diving again. 🙂

Back in Cairns, we celebrated our super day with a Subway and Japanese style crepe in the night market. Food and well everything here is ridiculously expensive here, I mean water for £2.50, and this standard indian restaurant had veggie curries for £10!!.. Uuuuhh .. Nah!

Anywho, this morning we did a little Cairns sightseeing I.e. We wandered the esplanade with giant backpacks in stow and after a healthy lunch.. (ye right!) we’ve got on our 12 hour bus to Airlie beach.

The views on the Bruce highway are really stunning and we have a funny bus driver who is telling us stories and playing movies for us so overall a pretty good way to spend the afternoon! …

 7 more hours to go. Night, night.