In Fiji, July 08

Splinters Apprentice
Bone & Beth Bushnell
Mon 7 Jul 2008 21:02
Vuda Point Marina 17.40.87S, 177.23.21E.
We are having a great time in Fiji and have had 6 superb dives. We did the White Wall off Viani Bay then 2 on our own off Albert cove, n Rabi island. The last 2 had the best coral I have seen for years and masses of fish but no real big pelagics.
On Rabi island we had to check in with the local Banaban police at Nuka, 6 miles north of our anchorage at Catherine Bay. Now this might strike you as no great distance BUT we were 60 mins in the back of a truck, apart from when we went uphill and the truck couldn't make it with the 40 people inside so all the blokes had to get off and walk uphill, then we missed the bus so the truck, complete with burning clutch but at least now full of diesel, had to carry on and take us the rest of the way , another 45mins.. It was a fun trip, quiet an experience, but not as character building as that one in the Philippines. The town was not too big with one shop, police station, courthouse and government offices! We did manage to get frozen chickens though.
The weather has, on the whole, been wet and grotty. not many days of blue sky and sun but never mind its warm.
We visited Jim of "Rag of the Air" fame. He has a great little set up and made us very welcome with good food and fun stories. The locals are really friendly and seem pleased we visited them. We did the evuSevu thing That involves presenting a bunch of Kava roots to the village chief who then formally welcomes you to the village. It also involves telling stories of the boat and us which has to be done by Bone! He's getting better. If you're really unlucky they then invite you to drink the Kava with them. It is disgusting stuff, made by pounding the roots then mixing it by hand with water. You can imagine we try and escape without drinking cos its awful. The villagers wandered if Bone was Fijian , it's the hair,suntan, and dishevelled look. We are in company with Reflections and Adelia. Kip and Bone are as usual pests, slightly out of control, is spite of our best efforts.
No water problems here, don't even have to run the watermaker, there has been so much rain we are full of rainwater.
We went north around Vanu Levu and crossed the channel to the main island Vitu Levu, very rough crossing with water back to the mast. We are in Vuda Point Marina waiting foe the 30kts to drop a bit before heading upto the Yassawa islands.