Day 269

Going to split the last 6 weeks of my trip into two sections. My South Pacific Islands trip and touring with Jess.

So off I flew to Tonga and my week in the Daysprings Lodge in Nuku’alofa.

What an experience the flight was. I’ve never seen so many boxes and containers. It was like being on the coach again in south east Asia where every stop we picked up more“cargo”. At least there were no live chickens on the plane. Longest wait I’ve ever had to retrieve my bag.

First night I went to a dinner and show in a cave. We ate off a banana leaf whilst listening to the owner, a huge Tongan, sing Elvis Presley songs in between traditional ones. Bizarre. The show was fun especially watching one of the guys dancing. Check out the video.

A boat trip two days later found me on an island small enough to walk around in 15 minutes. The sun was shining so I was happy.

My last day took me on a trip around Tonga with Ray. Saw some beautiful sights. Swam in an underwater cave. Which unlike the one In Turkmenistan didn’t stink of bat shit.

The blow holes were incredible. Not so sure about “Stonehenge” and the three headed coconut – yes it’s a tourist sight even had its own sign!

The measles outbreak in Samoa was getting really bad so I queued up with the locals and got a jab.

Next stop Fiji Beachouse and the one hotel I had booked I was so looking forward to and it didn’t disappoint. Hammocks were dotted around everywhere. There was a swing that went over the sea. The whole place was so beautiful and I adapted to “Fiji Time” quite well. There was even tea and scones at three. Very civilised.

Another boat trip saw me spending the day on a beautiful secluded island snorkelling in two bays.

The sea was really rough on the ride over and My bum still hurts from the bouncing on the seat. My own fault sitting at the front!

A hike in the forest took me to a lovely waterfall.

But the best bit was getting a wet suit back on and going back in the sea. Diving with sharks was never on my bucket list (but then throwing myself out of a plane wasn’t either!) but it was incredible. No I wasn’t in a cage I was kneeling behind a coral wall watching 1000’s of fish being fed including the biggest grouper I’ve ever seen. Then the big boys turned up. Reef and bull sharks surprisingly I wasn’t scared just in awe. It was Amazing like being in an aquarium without the glass.

My diabetes was fine and diving again was like being on a bike. You never forget.

Fiji was everything I thought it would be. Met some lovely people and had a relaxing time.

My last six days took me to Samoa and the Matareva Beach Fales. My room was literally a hut on the beach. It was a beautiful setting and sleeping every night to the sound of the sea was fantastic.

I did ask for an extra mattress tho – yes the “princess” still can’t handle the floor.

I did one trip to the Giant (and they were) clams but it was a real case of eat, sleep, read repeat for six days oh and sun bathe.

It was a lovely rest before heading back to Auckland and an emotional reunion with Jess.

The next three weeks are going to be hectic with my best friend Jess driving around New Zealand finally ending up back in Sydney but that’s the next bit of my journey.

Until then stay safe xxx


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