Friday 29th July 2022
We just spent an exceptionally busy 3 days in Denarau Marina, doing all sorts of essential (!) boat stuff! Cleaning, laundry, re-provisioning, refueling, refilling the liquor cupboards (absolutely essential), fridge, freezer and pantry, having Daisy washed, and polished to within an inch of her life, picking up our newly repaired Genoa, dealing with post, and other landlubber nonsense that we seem unable to escape from, before we’re able to once again set off heading out for distant shores, Daisy is now all shiny and lovely again.
Our plan is to head slowly up the Yasawa chain of Islands, looking to discover anchorages new to us. I’m still hellbent on finding the elusive “Precious Wentlewrap shell” cause thats what I do! but I really want to visit Islands where there are NO villages.
When you first visit a bay in Fiji with a village, it’s expected that you go ashore to meet the chief of the village (apparently to receive permission to be there) and share in the (to me, totally disgusting) “kava ritual”, this is where the chief and all the important members of the village congregate, reclining in a satisfied stupor around a large bowl of kava, which is a truly disgusting, narcotic mud water drink.
The roots of the kava plant which, as a visitor to the village, you have most likely brought and offered to the chief as a gesture of friendship, in a request to be allowed to set foot on his beaches and swim in his ocean, is made up for you all to share, from the same bowl! UGH! it’s passed from person to person (pre Covid). Although we’ve discovered that Covid has not aparently prevented the everyday occurrance of this sharing ritual.
Kava (for those of you interested) is derived from the roots of the Piper Methysticum plant (pepper plant).
The first time I came to Fiji, not knowing any better, and long before the social distancing days of COVID, I was stupid enough to partake in this kava (narcotic, mud water) drinking ritual, because I didn’t know any better, and thought it polite to do so, so to be agreeable I did, (big mistake), and apparently chiefs don’t appreciate guests spitting out their precious dirt water and pulling a face that looks like they’ve swallowed acid. I was allowed to slither silently away from the gathering, where I could vomit in peace over the roots of a banana plant!
I have no words to acurately describe how truly, unhygenic, unhealthy and disgusting this drink is, (please just give me vodka). What is wrong with these people?
It’s like (if you’ve ever done it) drinking from a thick muddy puddle of water, but with a disturbing, numbing of the lips and tongue effect, followed by eventually (if you drink enough) a brain numbing drunken stupor. Well each to his own, and whatever floats your boat, so to speak, it’s definitely not for me, and I will go to extraordinary lengths to avoid it, at all costs, sod the politeness of it, I’m not doing it, period. So our search continues for isolated islands with no villages….