So – after arriving in Fiji I stayed the first couple of nights at Smuggler’s Cove – here is what I wrote back then! (I have decided to transcribe the actual writing with factual errors included so I can illustrate how much I am learning about my past assumptions – i.e. the Flying boat thing from yesterday makes its way into this anecdote below).
First Night @Smuggler’s Cove:
First impressions of Smuggler’s Cove are quite promising to be honest… A comfy ride through roads that I have NO hope of remembering… to what seems to be a rather new and acceptably comfortable little spot. Staff are very friendly and bunk room is exactly what you would expect to get for $FJD24/night. The restaurant and bar areas are awesome… I had a Fiji Bitter and listened to the band play their tunes. I joined an older couple who turned out to be from Waimauku, as they had invited me to hang with them… They were very lovely, and not just because they had purchased me another beer… but it helped.
We were treated to Knife and Fire dancing whice were pretty awesome. To be honest, they were far more entertaining than the plethora of semi-drunk Brits and Americans who were doing their utmost to ruin the Macarena, as if the Macarena didn’t come pre-ruined anyway… “Look away Al! Look Away” I said to myself… Gosh, even writing this down brings back the eye-piercing trauma to my mind!
The band tonight were quite amusing… 2 guys, one on a guitar and the other on a Korg Triton keyboard… Pop in a Box if you like… They could certainly carry a tune however, Brown Eyed Girl, Dr Hook and a bit of Lionel Ritchie MAY have passed across my lips over the course of the evening… The juxtaposition of 70s and 80s pop being served to a 20-something crowd was not lost on me.
I wonder what Dad was thinking about on his first night in Fiji? Was he pressured about starting a new job? New friends? New dreams and goals? Or is it more likely, that like me, he was excited about the adventure that lay ahead? Truth be told, he was still probably still on his way over in the old Sunderland flying boat if he left Auckland at the same time as me!!! (I told you I had some assumptions making their way in here).
Whatever his thought processes may have been, I am pretty sure that like me, his first time hanging out in Fiji more than likely involved a Fiji Bitter or two… There is something that I have in MY life that will make this experience very different for me than what it would have for my dad… I have a wife and child back home that I miss terribly… I will be heading home in a week. He was single and ready to mingle… knowing he was going to be here a while would almost certainly have made the way he approached things very different. I also think that the way a single, 26ish year old likes to approach life is very different than a 33 year old with a family… The other thing for me is that I more than likely live my life by a different set of values than my Dad did… I am not one to speculate on the Spiritual state of my dad at ANY stage of his life (there isn’t anything to be gained by it)… but I have very high expectations on the way that I live as a Christian that I am sure my dad didn’t really ascribe to. ENOUGH differences… this trip is about finding the similarities…
It is late, and I am going to head to sleep and stop writing… the risk in journalling this type of trip is that an extrovert like me, shouldn’t spend so much time trying to be all introverted… I might have to join the Macarena tomorrow!!!