Saturday, September 8, 2012

Day #13 in Paradise

Today we did our last two dives before leaving.  The weather has changed a lot and the ocean is fairly stirred up which resulted in our dives having some killer currents today.  On one of them the surges were so strong that we were blown right off the dive course... we only knew this because we were diving the "great white wall" again and so we knew we were in the wrong spot.   It was a very good learning experience for us to learning how to deal with the currents. No pictures from these dives - current was too strong to photograph and pay attention and my battery died.

After our morning dives we had our resort ferry us over to the island of Kioa.  This is a small island of Polynesians that to make a long story short have all lived together and lived very simply off the land for centeries.   Nearly all the staff at our resort are from this island so we got a personal tour of it.  There are only 90 "houses" on the island and they have figured out how to make a syrup and an alcohol from palm trees.  They also are famous for their "handicrafts".  These entail mostly hand woven baskets and such.  We bought several neat things and tried to but a bit from every family to support them all evenly.  It is a very poor community yet the people all seem so genuinely happy and at peice with their life.  The trip there and back was adventerous seeing as we were in a very tinny wooden motor boat and there were 6-8 foot swells!  Needless to say, we both got pretty soaked.

The village of Kioa


This is how they dry the palm frowns for weaving

They still make their own Canoes out of palm tree trunks

The School

They collect the syrup form palm trees and turn it into sugar and alcohol.

You can always tell how poor a community is by looking at their dogs - I would say these folks are pretty poor but they were all so happy - which after all is what matters. 

The evening back at rainbow reef to me seemed to come straight out of a fairytale.  They lit candles in our room like they did every night and they set up a  table on our veranda covered in island greenery and candles.  They served us dinner there with a fresh (and really good) bottle of champagine.  The moon was full and sparkled on the ocean as we ate and we had soft music in the background.  It was so romantic and I felt we could have been in a disney movie!  What a fantastic last dinner at the resort!

I didn't have a tripod with me so it was hard to get a good shot. This was the best I could do.   It was so romantic!

And of course I have to include a picture with my feet in it before we left I shot this picture... aaahh so serene.

Last view of the main hut where we ate our meals.  

In Fiji they use to eat their enemies.  The story goes that they would cook people in this big cauldron.  The truth is that yes they did really eat their enemies but they used ovens to cook them and this cauldron was for cooking sugar cane.  Still makes for a fun picture though.  This is one of the last remaining cauldron in all of Fiji and it was on the grounds of our resort. 

This was from our Kava ceremony the day before but I forgot to post it on that days post. 

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