Micheál does the World and Elsewhere!! travel blog


Kitchen/Living Area with Oliver and Meme

Washing Day with Jamie and Pip!

Waterfall down the road from us

Why do mosquitoes love me so much?! I am getting destroyed! Ah well, apparently it will get worse before it gets better.....

I have just finished my second weeks work. Let me explain what the project is all about. I am working at the Vutikalulu Centre which is run by a couple called Julie and Fred Dewa. (http://vutikalulu-centre.com/) The aim of the centre is to develop a self sustaining farm that can run its self and not depend on electricity and buying external supplies etc. For example there is a huge garden with a variety of vegetables and fruit. There are hens that lay eggs, goats for milk etc. Bamboo is cut in the jungle and treated to be used for building. All water used for drinking and showering is collected in a tank from the rain. The aim is to set the project up, teach the concepts to the locals Fijians and as a result improve there lives.

The work is very physical which is exciting and refreshing for me. I sweat, i have sore and aching muscles and i get cut and bruised form cutting the bamboo! We are mainly working with 3 Fijians, Jona and Vara are 2 young men that are helping us with our chores and Meme is a young woman that helps with cooking food. I have noticed that the women here are a lot more chatty and giggly than the men!

On a daily basis we would wake up at 6am and wash outside using a tap/showering area that overlooks a huge valley. Fijian breakfast varies from day to day, but we have had pancakes and fried cassava (Fijian version of a potato. One morning i cooked porridge from rolled oats i got in the markets and served it with honey and fresh tropical fruit. Jona and Vara were very impressed and they never have had porridge before! After breakfast we go cutting bamboo in the jungle (swimming across a river to get there!), back across the river and bring it back up the road, treating it by mixing a few chemicals together and leaving the solution seep through it.

By this time Fred has arrived and he coordinates the rest of the days work, at the moment we are marking out a site to build a shower and toilet block. We have lunch at midday and until it gets dark at 6pm we occupy ourselves with gardening, reading, swimming and Pilate's!

Living with Jamie and Pip is so much fun. They are like my younger brother and sister to me. Jamie bust his lip open the other day (I'm not gonna say how he will kill me!), the wound was pretty open, but i cleaned it up and sealed it close with steri-strips. The wound has now healed and I reckon it wont leave a scar. Living with Pip is enchanting! I have never had a younger sister and so i now have an honorary one! I get to experience the craziness of girls on a daily basis, the wonders of Pilate's and how there is 19 types of moisturizer for your eyelids. The best thing about Pip is when we are hitching a ride into town, traffic just grinds to a halt when the male drivers see the pretty blonde girl from Oz, trucks and vans weave across lanes in effort to say hello to her! If it was just Jamie and i we would get nothing done!

I sleep really well and night also, i think its because i have nothing to stimulate my brain before sleep like TV or the internet. Around 8.30pm i am absolutely shattered, i crawl into bed and sleep until the rooster wakes me at 5.30am!

Until next time


PS i am currently reading "The God Delusion" by Richard Dawkins, i have finished reading "The Tipping Point" by Malcolm Gladwell and i cant stop listening to "Teargarden by Kaleidyscope" by the Smashing Pumpkins

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