Savu, Viti Levu, Fiji
We are staying at the South Seas Private Hotel. A very old hotel with small rooms off a maze of hallways with highly polished hardwood floors, which look like they have been there since shortly after Captain Bligh and his castaways rowed by. A fan and a shared bath with a comfortable bed for $40 Fijian, and it's near the National Museum.
We traveled to Suva by a local bus. We missed the express bus, because Arvid was messing around in an internet café. The local bus stops for just about anyone along the road so the trip took a while longer, but wasn't too bad. The bus was a bit crammed and we noticed that the Fijians are very good about hygiene. The smell of coconut oil soap seemed to come from every new passenger that squeezed in. We almost expected to see flowers in their hair. We pulled into Suva early Saturday afternoon
. Businesses close early on Saturdays in Suva, but we had time to see the Museum and some government buildings. Actually, there's not a lot to see here. So we picked up a paper from a street vender and retired out of the sun into the Bad Dog Cafe to read the local news and have a couple Fiji Red Beers. That's when we found out that the country was on the verge of another military coup. There seems to be some dispute between the recently elected government and the military. The military is threatening to "clean up the government", what ever that means. Since the elected government has only been in power for about a year it is hard to imagine they could have gotten ripely corrupted in such a short time. Australia plays the peace keeping role in this part of the world; much like the US does in Latin America or the Caribbean. And with just about as much gratitude from the locals. A couple of their warships have pulled off shore. The military is not happy with them butting in but the government likes to keep the Aussie intervention as the trump card. In the mean time we cashed some more traveler's checks and we're now getting $1.00 Fijian for only $.60 US as the Fiji dollar nose dives on the world market. But we'd better keep our thoughts to ourselves in case they round up the tourist to use as human shields against the Australian forces. The paper we were reading said that the authorities were advising tourists not to go to the capital unless absolutely necessary. We are naively already here. So we decided we get out of town the very next morning and head for a quieter and safer spot in the north of the main island. We've picked Rakiraki (pronounced racky racky) as the place to escape to.
Our coordinates are 17 21.592S 178 09.219E