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Fiji: Days 13-16

The last few days have been filled with more amazing adventures and a continued education of this beautiful, collectivistic culture. We took a gorgeous horseback riding trip through the Fijian bush where we found yet another waterfall to play in. Below you'll see my old-lady horse Mimsy and our tour guide Abby. I've made friends with the local band who are sweet as pie. We also hiked a gorgeous trail to some massive sand dunes where we discovered a beautiful beach that is full of driftwood teepees. Tonight we are transitioning to the village next door called Votua Lalai. We will sleep there for the night and then continue our trek to Nadi (pronounced Nandi). Oh yes, and I found Clinton, NJ in Fiji... scroll below to see! Xo! JT

 Horseback ride with Mimsy & Abby. 

Horseback ride with Mimsy & Abby. 

 Made it to the waterfall!

Made it to the waterfall!

 The local band. 

The local band. 

 Learning Fijian from a local boy. 

Learning Fijian from a local boy. 

 Gorgeous views on the hike to the sand dunes at the Coral Coast. 

Gorgeous views on the hike to the sand dunes at the Coral Coast. 

 Am I in Scotland? 

Am I in Scotland? 

 Guys, I know where I'm going. 

Guys, I know where I'm going. 

 Finally made it to the ocean!

Finally made it to the ocean!

 Driftwood teepees on the beach. Currently looking for a roommate! ;) 

Driftwood teepees on the beach. Currently looking for a roommate! ;) 

 At long last... some serious beach time. 

At long last... some serious beach time. 

 Yes I met a puppy named Moana. No I didn't take her home with me. She lives at the sand dunes with her mama! How cool!!

Yes I met a puppy named Moana. No I didn't take her home with me. She lives at the sand dunes with her mama! How cool!!

 Travel buddies! :)

Travel buddies! :)

 From Clinton, NJ to Fiji! How small is this world?? Congrats on your upcoming wedding Matt & Nicole!! What a beautiful place you have chosen to get married!

From Clinton, NJ to Fiji! How small is this world?? Congrats on your upcoming wedding Matt & Nicole!! What a beautiful place you have chosen to get married!

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Fiji: Days 10-12

We finally made it to the Coral Coast! It was very sad to leave Suva since we became so close to the staff at Grand Pacific Hotel, but life moves forward, as always. The last few days we have been working AND playing. I included some photos to catch you up to speed. Enjoy! XO! JT

 Tiki torch lighting ceremony! Goodbye Suva...

Tiki torch lighting ceremony! Goodbye Suva...

 Bula Coral Coast!

Bula Coral Coast!

 Class on the beach! Best classroom view EVER. 

Class on the beach! Best classroom view EVER. 

 Tree swinging with my friend Nali on Beqa Island. 

Tree swinging with my friend Nali on Beqa Island. 

 Starfish!

Starfish!

 Our visit to Sigatoka pottery village. The locals make the pottery from clay found in the village and glaze it with tree sap. How resourceful! 

Our visit to Sigatoka pottery village. The locals make the pottery from clay found in the village and glaze it with tree sap. How resourceful! 

 Beautiful women of the village presenting us with song and dance. 

Beautiful women of the village presenting us with song and dance. 

 I met 7 month old Winnie at the Kula Eco Park today. She was cuddly and kept nuzzling my arm for warmth. 

I met 7 month old Winnie at the Kula Eco Park today. She was cuddly and kept nuzzling my arm for warmth. 

 And then there was Kevin, the lizard... who decided that my head had the best view of all. 

And then there was Kevin, the lizard... who decided that my head had the best view of all. 

 Hey Kevin. 

Hey Kevin. 

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Fiji: Days 7-9

The last three days have been magical, if you believe in that sort of thing. One day was a rope swing in the middle of the Fijian forest, and next we were left stranded on Beqa Island to eat lovo, drink kava, and snorkel. I'll let the photos do the talking... 

Day 7:

 Making friends on the local bus to Colo-I-Suva Eco Park!

Making friends on the local bus to Colo-I-Suva Eco Park!

 Colo-I-Suva where we hiked to a watering hole and swung on a rope swing! 

Colo-I-Suva where we hiked to a watering hole and swung on a rope swing! 

 Hiking.

Hiking.

 Pretty hike. 

Pretty hike. 

 More of the hike. 

More of the hike. 

Day 8:

 Never a bad way to start the day.

Never a bad way to start the day.

 Time to get stranded.

Time to get stranded.

 So pretty!

So pretty!

 Having a moment.

Having a moment.

 Local village visit to the kids with the big Bula smiles!!

Local village visit to the kids with the big Bula smiles!!

Day 9:

 Had to squeeze some study time in today... might as well do it pool side! ;)

Had to squeeze some study time in today... might as well do it pool side! ;)

Miss and love you guys. XO! Jessi

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Fiji: Day 7

Today was an incredibly special day. My colleagues and I hopped on a bus and took a ride down to a port where we boarded little green motor boats and headed up the Navua River. The landscape was breathtaking. We cruised up the river for about 45 minutes until we reached a little narrow walkway. We followed it to find a gorgeous waterfall with a little watering hole that we proceeded to jump in immediately. It was quite the sight. On the way back we hopped onto a bamboo raft and floated along the river for a while. After this adventure, we headed over to Koromakawa Village where we were greeted as chiefs with the sound of a big drum and the blowing of a conch shell. We started the tour of the village with a visit to the lovo pits where they prepared our food underground (depicted in the photo with the men in the grass skirts). This was followed by a traditional kava ceremony and then they presented us with dance and song. We learned about the village way of life and the masculine-feminine hierarchy. It is truly a beautiful culture that is full of rich tradition and a collectivistic way of life. XO! JT

 On the Navua River!

On the Navua River!

 Lush life. 

Lush life. 

 Pretty views!

Pretty views!

 Waterfall and water hole!

Waterfall and water hole!

 Lovo pit. 

Lovo pit. 

 Jamming with the locals.

Jamming with the locals.

 Weaving & Painting. 

Weaving & Painting. 

 Village preschool. 

Village preschool. 

 Teacher & Student. 

Teacher & Student. 

 Woman of the village. 

Woman of the village. 

 Coconut snack. 

Coconut snack. 

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Fiji: Day 6

After a bit of work this morning, I set out to the local markets on the hunt for some photos and crafts. I made friends (as usual) with a few of the kids in the market. We sang some songs together and afterward, they decided to follow me around the market for a while. The eldest of the three had a smile that lit up the whole building. Later, my friends and I popped over to the Fiji museum where I sang with the local Fiji band. Playing music with people is the same no matter where you are in the whole world. I don't need to speak the local language, I just need to speak music. XO! JT

 Look where each of them is looking... up the hierarchy. ;)

Look where each of them is looking... up the hierarchy. ;)

 My little lady friends from the market. 

My little lady friends from the market. 

 Singing in Fiji! People were dancing!! :)

Singing in Fiji! People were dancing!! :)

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