Return to Oz Part 2: The Recap

For the most part, Fiji is not a difficult place to live, in fact many facebook chat exchanges with volunteers in legitimate situations where they are actually roughing it go like this:

14:53 I got a sweet coffee grinder
unnamed-volunteer-in-a-crazyass-place* is offline.

(* online name changed to protect the innocent)

So when I went back to Sydney and a lot of people asked “Is it good to be back?” and “Do you think you will stay longer?” and “Have you tried kava? What’s it like?” I didn’t know how to answer? I mean I wrote about my kava experiences already! Aren’t they reading my blog religiously? Also… my horrible secret is that Suva city is a lot like Australia, except the coffee sux, everyone is tall and black and my friends and family are only on computer. So in both a sociological and geographical sense, being back is both strange and familiar. Mind you, rural Fiji is very much a developing country – I just don’t live in that part on a day-to-day basis.

It was great to come back and see everyone I love, and there were some amazing experiences in such a short week, but I kind of missed Fiji a bit, because at the moment it is home, and maybe even becoming comfortable. I’ve always thought of expat Suva to be a bit of a false community, because there are so few of us, and everyone is coming and going a lot, so the depth of relationship is hard to attain, but going back made me realise even more that I have genuine friendships in Suva, so I predict for the foreseeable future I will love wherever I am but miss wherever I am not in my trips between the Feej and Australia.

As far as back home goes, for the sake of brevity I will catagorise my comings and goings.

Good times:

  • Dee and I both caught marlin and Dan and Kyle were stuck on a ship with nothing to do but talk to me. Kyle also hooked a dolphin which is pretty unheard of.
  • My mum’s birthday was beautiful.
  • I finally played the new COD and got killed a lot because I have no idea about the maps.
  • I got to go to my church twice and had lunch with some great friends.
  • White horse and Single Origin! Proper coffee! Frozen Ristretto!
  • Seeing how much people’s babies had grown even in 4 months.
  • Taking my boat out on the harbour with Eddy.
  • Rockband session with the crew that involved more gear than a real band uses.
  • Mexican food in Newcastle with Carla.

Regrets:

  • I packed to go back to Fiji too quickly and accidentally left a lot of things in Sydney… like my camera charger.
  • I didn’t buy any Powerade™ powder, which was pretty high up on the list.
  • I should have brought back more heavy wooden souvenirs because next trip I can see myself being over the luggage allowance.
  • Shoulda bought more coffee 😦
  • I didn’t get to see some people that are very important.

I had a beautiful breakfast of poached eggs and amazing coffee on Monday morning with my brother then came back to Suva. It was sad to say goodbye again to a lot of people that we loved.

Nikki’s parents are in town at the moment and her mum mentioned she reads my blog and enjoys it. So here’s a shout-out to you Mrs Harte. It was nice having teppanyaki with you! I also caught one movie already since I was back, and dismayed over suckerpunch getting delayed until the 7th of april. Here’s my review anyway:

Battle: LA – This is another “deceptive preview” movie where all the shorts make it seem like it’s the greatest movie ever and it turns out to be ok, and not at all the type of movie that they paint it to be. If they just made movies to accurately represent what they show you in previews I would be a lot happier. I’m secretly terrified suckerpunch is going to be like this. Battle: LA was less of a starship troopers type assault on crazy mechanical aliens and more of a black hawk down style survival movie that made me feel like I was playing one of those splinter cell games. I might have to go see the King’s Speech to purge myself. Rating: Excellence in explosion frequency.

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Return to Oz Part 1: Not Oz at All

I’m heading back to see my family and friends in Australia. There are a few family gatherings on for birthdays and although Fiji is awesome I do miss some things about Sydney, and the beautiful people living there.

I had teppanyaki with Connie, Grace and Nikki for lunch. It’s a little pricey ($10 aud/$18fjd) so we usually look for an excuse to go because otherwise we feel like we are blowing our whole allowance on one meal, even though that is far from true. Today’s excuse was my “farewell lunch”. Glen would have come, but the habitats didn’t pick him up in the taxi so he probably was left with a bunch of dalo and some bele at the markets… cruel girls, very cruel.

I headed off in the afternoon for my house to pick up some things and go. I was in a hurry and of course hit the worst traffic so far that I’ve seen on my way home. I think I was stuck at the flagstaff intersection for about two whole minutes! inexcusable! Once home, I grabbed my stuff and headed to the bus bay. There was a bus waiting but I opted to let it go and wait one and a half hours to try out the new Chinese made buses I have heard so much about in Suva. It was very swish inside, but there was one problem that should have been picked up before they put in that bulk order. The seats are made for chinese people and not Fijians. I barely fit into the seat and I’m half the size of some Fijians. I seriously cannot imagine how this is going to work, because the seat width and legroom is not going to work in this country. Ruh roh.

So I got to Nadi and manged to save $1.50 Fijian by not getting in the dodgey bus stand “taxi” cars, instead I walked 3 blocks to the main street and got in a legit taxi. It probably wasn’t worth it.

I know you guys probably don’t want to hear much about Australia since you basically all live there, so I’ll post up a picture of my hostel room to increase the Fijian-ness of this blog entry. It was $18fjd which is $10aud and only has two beds in it. If I get back home with no diseases it will be a net gain.