Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fiji—Part Three

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A Picture Worth A Thousand Words.
While in Makogai, we had the opportunity to be entertained by the towns' children.  The children were doing a fundraiser for their school so that they could travel to the main island in Fiji and visit various museums and other historical sights.  The way they do their fundraising is to entertain the local cruisers that come to their island.

DSCN0214 1When we arrived to the island, the entire town was there to greet us for the ceremony.
So, we were lucky enough to join about 20 other cruisers and be entertained by the village and participate in their ceremonies.
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Lily visiting with the children
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Even though we came to be entertained, I think that the children were just as entertained by us.
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At first, Lily made sure that I was in her range of eyesight, but 
soon she forgot and loved sitting with the children.
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The children performing the traditional Kava ceremony.
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Presenting the Kava to the chief.
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I couldn't get enough of the children dancing in
the audience to the beat of the drum.  So cute!
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Ummm... I wanted to stick this little guy in my purse and take him home with me.
He must have been around 4-years-old and performed with all the older boys.
He didn't miss a beat... or a move.  ADORABLE.
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The 5th and 6th grade girls performing.
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At the end, all the children got up and serenaded us and
then came in to the audience and asked us to dance with them.
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Martin in his sulu dress participating in the dance.
It is required that everyone come to these ceremonies dressed modestly.
Women and men are required to wear a sulu (sarong) and shirt with a sleeve.
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Lily loved every second of the festivities. 

Lily sat there the whole evening mesmerized by all the children, singing and dancing.

We loved our time at the village of Makagoi.  When we arrived, we presented the chief with the traditional Kava as well as a 25 lb.  Mahi Mahi that we had barely caught before arriving.  I am so grateful for these types of experiences and will dearly miss the chances that we have to mix with the villagers on the individual islands.  

*  *  *  

The next post will be about the Yasawa islands! The Yasawa island chain is found on the resort end of Fiji. The weather in the Yasawa's is supposed to be better being that it is on the western side.  Most tourists fly into the mainland and then hop on a ferry that takes them to their chosen destination resort.  Most of the Yasawa's are mountainous, green and are lined with reef-fringed beaches and low-key resorts.  Needless to say, I was REALLY looking forward to paradise.

Fiji—Part Two

The sea was so calm one morning in Fiji that it seemed more like a lake than the ocean.
Absolutely pristine.
Well, we have been back at the marina now in Port Danarau, Fiji for the past few days and we have been busily getting AMARA in shipshape before we set off for New Caledonia.  I even went and did a little shopping spree with Sue this afternoon.  It was so fun since I haven't done any real shopping since starting out on this adventure.

It has been almost five weeks when we arrived in Fiji and I feel like we have barely skimmed the surface of all the islands.  I can see why so many cruisers just come to Fiji for a season and don't go anywhere else.  But alas, it is time to point AMARA westward toward Australia.

Since time is ticking down, I thought that I would just post a few photos of our time in Fiji so that you can see what we have been up to and so I can remember 10 years from now what we did.
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Martin and I visiting an old leper colony on the island of Makogai.
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Sue and Lily enjoying the sun in Fiji. 
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Lily enjoying her fancy drink.
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Martin giving some local school kids a ride home from school in the dinghy.
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The rest of the school kids following the dinghy. 
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We went and visited a small community off the island of Taveauni.  
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These people essentially had nothing, but what they didn't lack was a lot of love for Lily. 
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We brought balsa wood gliders for the kids.
Here, Martin is helping to assemble one for the little boys.
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This girl loved Lily.  She never put her down the entire time
we were visiting the village.  Of course, Lily loved it.
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Lily enjoying "Fairy Bread."  An Aussie kid favorite.  
*  *  * 
While on the island of Makogai, we were given a tour by the local chief of the community.   It was an old leper colony when it finally closed down in the sixties.  The children were so sweet and loving with us and they were especially enamored by the little girl in the stroller.  They followed us everywhere... rather, they followed Lily everywhere.
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Showing the children all the pictures that I had taken of them.  They LOVED seeing pictures of them.  Next time, I am going to bring a polaroid camera so that I can give pictures away.  
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The community takes pride in their turtle preserve. 
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This is Rosie.  I could have taken her home with me.  She was such a precious little girl.
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The old cemetery.
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The women preparing for the evenings ceremony that we were going to have with them.
Here they are making headdresses for the children to perform in that evening.  
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Where I love being the most–With all the little ones.
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Heading back to the boat.  Lily and Sue have turned into Pied Pipers.
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The children waving goodbye until the evening where they are set to perform for us.
We loved visiting this part of Fiji.  Especially the community of Makogai.  I will try and get the photos up of the children performing for us that evening.  It was one of the funnest evenings that we have had in a long time and I'd love to share it with all of you.

*  *  *  
We are pulling up anchor as I type heading to check out of Fiji.  It will take us a day to get to where we have to check out and then we are off to New Caledonia.  I am sad to leave all our new friends behind but anxious for the new adventures that await.

Here is to safe travels and fair winds.