Cruising with Becky, Fijian picnic

19 09.248S 178 32.430E

Posting by Barb:

Suki had suggested that we take our boat and go to the sand spit and have a Fijian picnic and we were game for that. Fijian picnic meant eat whatever is speared, picked or found that was edible and then cooked over an open fire. Despite Becky’s marginal fondness for seafood she was willing to try anything. I don’t think anyone of us realized that coming to Fulaga would mean endless meals of ‘fresh’ fish. We had plenty of meat in the freezer but the local hospitality meant eating what they offered.

At 9:00 in the morning Suki, Ba, Tai (their grandson), La (friend of their grandson), and their nephew were at the shore waving at us to come pick them up. It took 2 dinghy trips but we finally had everyone on board. DSC_5002-1DSC_4997-1 

We decided to share our last fresh pineapple that we had on board with everyone. Tai wasn’t quite sure if he liked the look of the fruit but once he had a taste there was no stopping him. He didn’t talk much but just did a quiet eye brow raise which meant ‘I want some more please’. We motored to the sand spit, Suki happily steered the boat as he knew the route. It was a beautiful anchorage spot, sandy bottom, great holding, no reefs to worry about. That describes all the anchorages in the Fulaga lagoon.  

Once we were anchored and had everyone on shore Ba, with the help of her machete, quickly erected a shady palm leaf structure and had a little fire going. DSC_6909

DSC_6904-1We were told to bring nothing on shore but I contributed a couple of Mahi steaks and some ‘juicy’ drink as Tai called it. Becky wanted to lie in the sun and Denny and I accompanied Suki to his fishing spot. There were two reef passes nearby full of fish and I even saw a turtle swim by. Suki set off with his spear and Denny and I floated the passes amidst hundreds of other fish. Sorry no water camera!!

DSC_6883Suki managed to catch a fish for everyone and Ba cooked them all on the open fire. Even six year old La was walking around with a sharp knife wanting to clean the fish. DSC_6887I was wondering how we were going to eat the fish but Ba quickly wove together a couple of coconut palm leaf plates and DSC_6899filled it with a whole,  piping hot fish and a sweet potato (grown in Suki’s plantation). Then we just used our fingers ( we all passed the head and brain of the fish to Ba as it was her favourite part). I think even Becky would agree that fresh cooked fish can be pretty tasty!With just using a machete and a spear they prepared everything for a wonderful picnic.  I sometimes envy their simple lifestyle. Why do we insist on making life complicated and we call it progress!

Well after a month in Fulaga we were starting to miss the perks of complexity and progress as we missed family and friends that we normally stay in touch with using Skype, Face Time, Magic Jack or FaceBook. We just had a satellite phone and used that sparingly.

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