Sunday, July 26, 2009

move to Mali

Ok, so officially moved to Mali running water, no sink, no flush toilet, no TV, no electricity until it gets dark, and I live in a bamboo hut.....Life is goooooood actually. The people are wonderful, they are very willing to teach me the local language, which is good because without it I will have no social life.....

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

end of training

training will finally come to an end next thursday, then I'll be heading to Mali Island for my two years of service. PC has crammed so much shit into the last week of training, I have lots of presentations and projects due as well as my final language test tomorrow. If I fail I get held back in training for a week but I'm not worried at all about passing. The weather lately has been very mild on Viti Levu, its in the high sixties most days with plenty of rain, this is winter in Fiji. In Mali there will be lots more sunshine since It is part of the dry side of Vanua Levu. The only downfall of living on the dry side is the lack of water, I'll be relying on rainwater a lot for drinking, so lets hope I get enough to survive........

Sunday, June 28, 2009

sooooooo i just made my first visit to my new home on mali island. my bure is extemely small but i don't mind, it makes it easier to keep clean........but there are some rat and spider problems, not to mention the chickens that are nesting in the roof, they are so loud at night. As for water, that is going to be an issue during the dry season, I can only collect water from the village tank for 30 minutes every morning, in the wet season the water supply increases, I bought a camp shower to take showers, its basically a plastic bag with capacity for four gallons of water that has a mini shower head attached, I can take a shower with about two gallons since I don't have hair to wash anymore. The closest town in Labasa which is a thirty minute boat ride away, if I charter a boat myself it costs sixteen dollars each way, my best option is to go with the village fisherman when they go to town to sell there fish, its much cheaper that way. well, it's all good on the beautiful island of Mali, I head back to Viti Levu tomorrow for three more weeks of training before I return to Mali permanently.

Friday, June 19, 2009

finally got my site placement

I'll be spending the next two years on Mali Island north of labasa town on Vanua Levu doing envioronmental awareness promotion. Ill be living in a very small traditional Fijian Bure in the village of Nakawaga. I'm pumped! I'll be taking over for a volunteer whose two years is up, this will be nice since the people in the village will already know what peace corps is about. However, the current volunteer has accomplished a lot, so I have big shoes to fill.....

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

weekend in sigatoka

ok, so i spent the weekend with a with a couple of pc volunteers who have been in fiji for at least one year. most of them had good things to say about their time in fiji but most of them had a lack of actual accomplishments, they were pretty much in survival girl had been accused of being a witch and pretty much was an outcast in her village.....she is due to finish her service in three weeks and yet claimed that she accomplished next to nothing in her village during her two years of service....most of the male volunteers i have spoken to have had better seems as though women have a very hard time in fiji.....women pretty much stick to cooking and cleaning up after there when female pc volunteers come to fiji they face even more obstacles than male volunteers.
anyway, during my visit we stayed at a sweet resort the first night, we hung out by the pool the next day then went to sigatoka sand dunes national park which was amazing. on our way back to our village we stopped at colo-i-suva which is a rainforest ecopark with waterfalls and swimming holes....we spent a few hours there hiking and swimming, check out some pics on my facebook page.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

capital of fiji

so i saw the capital of fiji for the first time yesterday, its called was very impressive, it felt just like being in a big city in america, only tropical.....there were beautiful buildings with some really cool shops and restaurants....but as far as big cities go suva is it in fiji. peace corps environmental volunteers met with the ministers of fisheries, forestry, and environment in fiji today....there are 217 marine protected areas in fiji, thats up from just 10 in 1997....the news was not all encouraging though, only 5 percent of the original forest cover that existed before whites came here is still in its pristine state....also, we learned that conservation practices are still in their infancy here, there are few options to get rid of waste.... most is illegally dumped or burned since there is no trash pick up in rural villages.... in my village of naisogovau trash is just dumped in random spots, its kind of sad.....even in the villages people are becoming westernized and with that comes the accumulation of "stuff" that eventually ends up as trash... consumption is not nearly as high here as it is in america but i fear it may reach that level some day, in turn spoiling fiji's natural beauty and diversity.

Monday, June 1, 2009

2 weeks down

yooooooooo everyone, sorry i havent had a post yet. so two weeks so far in fiji, i am def loving it so far. I live in a rural village called naisogovau. my fijian host family is wonderful, they treat me like a king. my home has running water and electricity even, no ac though but i am getting used to the heat. my host mother is especially attentive, she cooks all of my meals and takes great care of me. the first day i came my whole family sat on the ground and demanded that i sit on a chair, after they made me dinner my grandfather ate my leftovers, he told me he ate them because he loves me. my new family also told me that they are here for me and would do anything it took to make me comfortable, they speak pretty good english which helps a good deal, but at home they mostly speak fijian, that helps to learn the language. i got to go to the beach for water safety training, it was full of garbage, most of the nice beaches are near tourist resorts. i havent seen much of fiji so far since all i do is to language and safety training, but its all good. seriously, i have no complaints. i havent been sick yet, unlike most of the other volunteers. every day i have language training, fijian is very difficult to learn but i am doing well. oh yea, there are five other peace corps dudes who live in the village with me, they are all real cool and we get along well. well, im out......