Saturday, September 26, 2009

Settling In

Settling in is a process not an accomplishment, a journey not a destination. It reminds me of adolescence somewhat, in that your state of mind changes on a regular basis. One minute you think you have it all wired, the next you feel like you are truly the clueless foreigner who will never fit in. It is to be expected, of course.

The process continues here in Fiji. We have slowly started to form a routine for school. (Homeschooling in itself is a process!) We’re figuring out the food thing – no small accomplishment with two American children with finicky tastes! Thank goodness for corn flakes, ramen, peanut butter and a lovely little invention called breakfast crackers. And so far, the coffee and chocolate supplies are plenty.

As hoped, we’re spending a lot of time on the reef, seeing new critters everyday and honing up on our snorkeling skills so we can venture into more challenging areas. We’re also learning how to tap into the local community and possible volunteer opportunities (Rotary!) so we can be of some use to the community and get to know people. And, in what was perhaps the highlight of our week, we located a wonderful garden bar with cold beer and warm hosts, who can give us the scoop on a lot of the local lore and personalities.

We will all take the bus into town this morning and then another one to the Cousteau Resort, which in typical Cousteau form has reputedly one of the best reefs around for snorkeling. We’ll see. The Cousteau name and the reputation of the resort was the initial impetus behind our checking out Fiji. The research kept pointing back to Savusavu so here we are.

In my wanderings on the reef this week, I’ve come to realize how lucky we are to have places like Fiji in the world. It is still so wild, beautiful and relatively undeveloped still. The people are beautiful and ever so friendly, making us want to get to know them better. Whether we will return or not, I don’t know yet. It is an awful long way from our home in the Pacific Northwest and there are so many other islands to explore. I’m glad we have such a long stretch of time to get to know it and to make a decision!


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