Trip Start Jan 20, 2007
Trip End May 06, 2007

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Where I stayed

Flag of Fiji  , Viti Levu,
Saturday, April 28, 2007

Today we drove past a prison which looked rather flimsy. Our guides uncle was a security guard there so he stopped to say hello and that and while we were waiting, all the prisoners came up to the fences and were happilly waving at us. We were just thinking how poor the security looked and how easy it must be for them to escape, when one of the guards opened the gate and let out a prisoner who casually strolled down the road. 'Ummm isnt that a prisoner?' and our guide replied, 'yeh man, hes just going for a wander to chill out. He'll come back later' HA Amazing. Fiji time! Its just so relaxed here. We also loved it as whenever we were driving through anywhere, everyone stopped what they were doing to excitedly wave at us! The most friendly, welcoming place I have ever been.

We also went past the grave of Fiji's biggest canniball eater. There were 99 skulls around the house perimeter!! Back in the day the Feejee islands were actually known as the 'Canniball Islands', something which does not go on anymore!

Then we arrived at Sabeto Hotpools. As with everything else in Fiji, these have been left in their natural state... so the mudpool is basically a big hole in the grass dug down and full of thick mud. As I got in you kind of just sink down feeling it all squelch in your toes. It was quite full of sticks too. Then as we were merrily plastering ourselves in the stuff (people pay a fortune for mud posh mud treatments!) we then heard a rather loud 'MOOOOOOO', so turned round and there was a cow right next to us. Hmmm, I hope this is all just mud I'm slapping on my face..!

They call cows in Fiji 'bullamacows'. The story behind this we were told is when Westerners arrived, they introduced cows to the islands to help them sustain themselves and told them that they were cows. Later they brought some bulls over (to help re-populate the cows) and told them they were called bulls. But the Fijians were confused as they had been told they were called cows, so they opted for a mixture of the two. Hence, bullamacow!

Following the mud pool we were then able to wash off in some natural hot pools and my skin felt lovely and soft from the mud treatment! We then continued on back to Nadi where we had a few days to chill out and explore. One day we walked into town and were drawn into a shop selling all sorts of local crafts and hand-made souvenirs. The man in there was so friendly and he ushered us into the back where he called some of his mates over and gave us a kava ceremony! He then invited us round his home for dinner that evening but I was so embarrassed as I felt I had nothing to give him in return that I couldnt accept. Which is a shame as he didnt want anything in return, the people here are just so friendly! I bet it would have been a fun evening.

So my experience of Fiji was absolutely incredible. Like nowhere else I have ever experienced I hope to be able to come back one day!
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