MP3 track of the day: Shut up and Drive - Rhianna
Weather: Cooler today, able to walk a little.
Got up, had breakfast and got ready for the day by 8:00am. I then paid my bill at Mango Bay ($81 ...£27 for four nights accommodation, bargain) and I got dropped off at the bus stop. I therefore took shade and waited for my bus. Whilst there a 'Fiji Water' lorry came past, stopped, and the driver gave me a bottle of 'Fiji water' for free, cheers!
The first bus to turn up was a Sunbeam coach; I got on, sat down and prepared to watch the view all the way to Suva. However the TV kept catching my eye because it was showing films; the film on at the time was 'Bean's Holiday' which I hadn't seen in ages. It's quite weird because it's the second time I've seen a Bean film or TV series whilst traveling (the other one was on the plane to Anchorage, Alaska). After 'Bean's Holiday' had finished a rubbish American 'saves the world' action film (that I can't remember the name of) was put on (by the driver who operates the DvD drive whilst driving). This allowed me to not have anymore distractions and I could concentrate of the scenery around me as I traveled to Suva (though I did occasionally catch myself watching the film … TV's!).
Suva is completely different to any other urban area I have seen whilst being in Fiji. Compared to the rest of Fiji it's very advanced with shopping centers, one-way systems and high rise buildings. I was impressed by what I saw and, as I took a cab to my hostel, I was looking forward to my three nights here.
Once at my hostel / hotel I checked in and then went out for something to eat. After this I returned to my hostel / hotel because I was in desperate need of getting some laundry done. However, just like every other place I've stayed so far, it hasn't got any laundry facilities available and so I had to take a cab and leave my laundry at a laundrette (which cost me $12 … £4, more expensive to do my washing here than in Canada!). I then returned to my hostel / hotel. The place I'm staying, South Sea Private Hotel, is okay. It looks like an old wooden colonial building with high ceilings (making it pretty cool in here). However the facilities are basic and all the notices put up by the management (who are apparently English) make it pretty unwelcoming. When I returned to my room another guy had checked in from Essex, who seemed very nice.
I've now been in Fiji for a week and it's been a bit of a roller coaster ride. I've discovered that you shouldn't plan to do to much in a day; it's too hot to do lots and lots (plus with Fiji time it makes it difficult to mold your day around bus times or other things) and just achieving one or two things is a struggle. The weather is either getting cooler, or I am slowly adapting to it, but I'm still struggling … it's really making me think about traveling through South East Asia (though I will be there in December so it should be cooler). Budget wise I'm on £20.63 a day which is pretty much bang on how much I wanted to spend; however I'm planning on doing a bit of island hopping which will cost quite a bit, therefore I hoped to have been below my budget whilst on the main island. One problem with keeping to budget is that in Fiji there are no hostels as such; instead you get dorms within resorts (for example Mango Bay). This means that normal facilities found in a hostel (laundry, free internet and a kitchen) are not available and so you have to pay more than normal for internet, food and laundry. On the flip side you do get the benefits of a resort and free activities (for example free snorkeling equipment). However I save the best part of Fiji until last; the people are amazing, they are so friendly and helpful and will just talk to you as you walk through town. Even the 'bola bola men' aren't aggressive and a polite no thank you will see them on there way. Fiji is a great country with lots to see, it's just a shame that the bombardment of the weather makes it difficult.