23 October 2014

Port Denarau

After the Lau Group, Port Denarau came as a shock.  There were docks full of Mega Yachts, a plaza, a fountain and shops overflowing with tourists.  We tied up to the dock and went to the marina office, it was a relief to get off the boat and into air conditioning after 3 days cooped up on the boat.  I took advantage of the internet to send emails to grandparents and friends, then explored the plaza area.  

There was a central area with benches and a fountain, on one side there were shops, surfing boutiques, jewelry shops and grocery stores.  On the other side there was a whole array of restaurants, food stalls and cafes. I wandered around and bought myself a smoothie from an ice cream shop next to the fountain.  

We got our laundry done and cleaned the boat until it shined, I walked up and down the docks and explored the marina.  We got little cards from the office that acted as keys, we would swipe them in front of a metal triangle that was outside the gate, bathrooms and marina services.

20 October 2014

A Picnic

A few days after meeting the village people we were pretty good friends with them.  We invited them onto our boat for a short sail to a beach everyone called the Sand Spit because a long spit of sand wound out from the beach at low tide.  In the morning at 9:00 we picked up our hostess sand a couple of her friends.  There was Mere our hostess, her uncle, his daughter her niece, Meres husband Jone, and two girls who were just friends.  

We reached the Sand Spit and everyone suited up in their swim suits for a fun day at the beach!  I rigged the sailing dinghy and took Cleo and Archie to the beach, everyone else followed, swimming paddling or sailing to shore.  Some of the village people set up a shelter of saplings and palm fronds using nothing but machetes.  We split into groups, the little kids preferring to stay by the beach and play in the shallows while my dad and two village men took Cleo and Jasper spearfishing and two more village people went to catch coconut crabs for lunch.  I went with David, Sam, Archie and a village boy called Tua to catch some fish in the small salt water pools on the other side of the island.  We didn’t catch anything with our rods but Tua succeeded in catching five small fish with nothing but a rock.

We went back to the Sand Spit empty-handed but we’d had fun, Tua had taught us how to use the pieces of coral littered on the beach to catch small fish to use as live bait, but we still caught nothing.  When we returned to the beach I was hot and bothered from the mosquitos and sun on the beach, I caught a ride with one of the boys in the kayaks and went back to our boat for a cool off and spent half an hour by myself just chilling. I went back when I saw everybody gathering in the shelter for lunch.  I got to the beach just in time to get some lunch.  Everybody had participated in making the meal, the two people who had gone crabbing had brought back two huge coconut crabs the size of my head.  The spearfishing group had speared 5 fish which had been roasted over the fire until they were nice and crispy.

The food was awesome and after we were done we set up a soccer field and played a game of soccer.  My team won and and it was really fun playing in the sand.  We swam back to the boat and I took a shower while we sailed back to the village anchorage.

17 October 2014

5 things you need to know about swimming with sharks

                       I have been swimming with sharks for a long time and I thought maybe
                                I could share some of the rules that i've fallowed for safety.

 1. If you ever incounter a shark in the water and he's just swimming by don't be scared, i'm not saying you should go up and pet it, but don't freak out. The first time I ever saw a shark I was really scared and I kind of freaked out. That expeirience helped me not be afraid of sharks any

2. If theres sharks neer by don't stick a dead fish in the water, i've never done this because my dad has warned me off it, but i've heard storys about my Astralian friends, dads friends cousin, fighting a shark for a fish he had speared.

3. If you get a cut on your leg arm or anywhere on your body get out of the water quick if theres sharks. I usually tend to stay away from the really shallow coral that I could cut myself on if there are sharks around, but if there are no sharks then by all means sea the really shallow pretty coral. It's the best.

4. If you do freak out then try to swim calmly to a boat so the sharks don't get curious. Sharks still kind of give me the creeps, there supposed to be agessive and scary but i kind of feel bad for them because everyone hunts them now for shark fin soup.

5. If there is no where to get out of the water and a shark starts getting agressive (this might suprise you) punch it in the face. I've never had this happen to me but i always thought it would be awsome like a charrecter in one of my books, "Saving Your Mom From Certain Death."      


The town of Nandi is about a 30 minute bus ride from the marina.  My mom, Cleo and I got up and dressed early to catch it.  We were the first ones on the bus so we watched as all the local people who lived outside the town get on.  

The bus stop in town was huge with tons of buses in it, around the border there were stalls selling all kind of Indian treats. We walked through the town and came upon a store called Lani’s, we stopped to take a picture and the owners invited us in.  We told them that my moms name was also Lani and they invited us to sit down and have Kava with them. We made friends with them and they showed us around town to all the shops we needed to visit.  After going to the Supermarket, they let us drop off our bags in their shop so we wouldn’t have to lug them all around while we went to our other stops.  

We checked out all the little dollar stores for things to use for our Halloween costumes. It was soon to be Diwali so all the stores sold fireworks and sparklers and little Hindu statues.  We bought some face paint and Henna paint to do doodles on our skin and Cleo bought some silver nail polish for her Artemis costume.

For our last stop we went to the Fresh vegetable market. It was huge, there were rows and rows of all different kinds of vegetables and fruits and Kava. A whole half of the market place was devoted to selling Kava, the root that was ground and watered down to make a drink that didn’t taste very good, at least not to me. We spent an hour browsing the different vegetable stalls, we each got a chicken curry roti for lunch and an apple.  After we were done with the market we went back to Lani’s to collect our bags and thank the nice owners.  We caught a taxi and drove out of town, along the road out there were lots of stores and restaurants, we stopped in an alcohol store to get beer and a butchery to get bacon.  

We were on our way back when my mom saw an Italian deli, she got really excited and insisted we stop there.  Inside the shop smelled like milk and pasta, the owner was glad to have customers and warmed up to us when we told him we were from Rome and spoke a bit of Italian.  He let us taste the meats and cheeses he was selling and chattered away in Italian while we picked out cheeses, meats and pastas to buy.  It had been so long since we’d had any good Italian food that we ended up spending a lot, but was worth it.

Finally done with our shopping we headed back to the marina.

16 October 2014


In Fiji there’s a group of islands called the Lau Group, a two day sail away from the main island.  We have been spending time there anchored next to an island called Fulaga, there are a few villages on Fulaga each with about 50 people living in them.  The first time we visited one of the villages we met the chief of the village who welcomed us formally to his village and we had a little ceremony where my dad drunk a rootlike vegetable called kava.  The village men mixed the root with water in a special ceremonial bowl and ground it up until it looked like dirty gray water, to me it tastes like liquified dirt but everyone else seems to thinks its like alcohol, only people 18 or older can drink it and you can supposedly get drunk if you drink too much of it.

We were introduced to our host family, they would answer any questions we asked and show us around the village until we left for a different anchorage.  Our hostess was a young woman named Mere (pronounced Mary) and she was really nice, She showed us her home and the school where she worked as a kindergarten teacher, she fed us lunch, a really good meal of potato curry, noodle soup, coconut fish patties and boiled yams.

We didn’t sleep with Mere, she was more of a guide then a hostess but we spent all afternoon there and met almost everyone in the village.

The Most Beautiful Place in the World

The first place we went to was beautiful but it was still the wrong spot. When we finally
came to a place called the sand spit I knew it was the most beautiful i’d ever been. There was a long beach, there was a sand bar at the end we were at. There was white sand dotted with pretty shells, and a green forest with birds chirping, and most beautiful of all was the deep blue water of the sea, turning a pretty shade of turquoise when it gets shallow.

Right after we got in a yellow boat named Elena came in after us we were friends
 and I was really happy to see them. They had three boys on there boat one was my age his name is Jasper then there are twins that are jades age named, Sam, and Archie. When we got to the sand spit I put on my bathing suit and kayaked to the beach, but when I got there I didn’t know what to do I looked and looked and looked, but there was nothing. Finally the older twin came in to play he was 8 years old a bit younger than me.  

We walked over to a little pool and played in it we waited till the other kids came in then we all picked up sticks and started wacking them against trees. The oldest boy who was 10 years old gave we a nasty cut on my hand, but I got my revenge on him. It was so fun we climbed trees while our parents cooked fish on the fire. It was the most fun ever.  Finally we had to go but  didn’t really want to stay i wanted to eat that perfectly cooked fish with my friends. That was the best day in the best place.


We had a rough sail from Savu Savu `to the  Lou group. Fulaga is one of the places in the Lou group.
 Its supposed to be the most beautiful island in the world, but thats not what impressed me.
 When I heard there were little towns in Fulaga I imagined little palm leaf houses and not
 very many people,but when I got there I was really really really impressed with how
 there town was structured and how the houses were built. 

I had heard that we had to check with the chief and do a little ceremony to be exepted into Fulaga.
 We walked threw the town handing out treats to all the kids. In the middle of the town was a round
 house with a throne carved into a block of stone outside the door. We entered the house there was a woven palm leaf carpet on the ground.

 In the corner sat an old man who was obviously the chief.
 He wore a wrap around skirt and looked  really tired. We walked in and sat in a circle,
 our parents gave the chief a special root called Kava they ground it up in there village to
 make a special drink also called Kava. I thought that they were going to make the
 Kava for us instead they passed around a little book and we all made a little entry for him.
That was the fun part, but then my friends, my sisters, and I all had to stand up and sing. 

I had been a lot of places and had to check in a be exerted but i’d never been to a place 

like that.