Saying Goodbye To Fiji
My last week approached fast. Too fast. Together with the other volunteers, I went partying four times in a row during my last week in Fiji. We were dancing all night long – on the tables, on the dancefloor, on the bar.
On my last weekend, I decided to stay home due to a lot of things I had to do before I finally said goodbye to Suva. For example, I had to go to the Bio-Security Council to have my Kava export declared. Also, there was farewell dinner with my host family. Saying goodbye to the PA-Staff, my former co-workers at Suva Primary and my host family was heartbreaking.
Nadi & Baby Cockroaches
I spent my last two days in Nadi together with Shoko, another volunteer whom I closely worked with at Summer School. On our trip to Nadi, there was another unusual situation:
Halfway into the bus ride, the A/C broke down, and it became boiling in the coach. When we reached Nadi-Town-Station (one stop before the Airport, where we were supposed to get off), the temperature indicator on the bus said 33 degrees outside / 29 degrees inside. Everybody on the bus was sweating. I´d noticed before that there were some bugs crawling on the floor of the coach, but due to the heat I didn´t care about them. Then suddenly, my friend next to me (she sat at the window) screamed. I turned toward her and saw what she was yelling about: There was a bunch of cockroach-babies dropping down from the ceiling of the coach right on top of her and me. Once they´d fallen down, they started crawling everywhere. To cut a long story short, we both screamed, got off the bus and took a cab to the resort. I wonder if that bus ever reached its final destination…
We did a Manamuca Island – Cruise on Tuesday, which was terrific. I could do some last-minute snorkeling and free-diving. I was glad Shoko also accompanied me to the airport.
When They Didn´t Want Me To Leave The Country
After a second heartbreaking goodbye, I was challenged by another funny situation. After the Security Check, there was Passport control, and the officer wouldn´t let me pass. Just a brief summary of the conversation:
Officer: (stares severely at my passport, then to me, then back at the passport) I´m afraid, Mam, but you can´t leave this country!
Me: (think he´s joking…) Haha… I can´t leave Fiji? Okay, I´ll stay then… haha
Officer: (looks even more severe) Your visa has not been extended.
Me: OH. Ehhhm. And now?
Officer: Now, you´ve been illegal in this country for quite some time, Madam!
Then I had to follow the officer to a Security Office somewhere in the airport, where they were trying to solve the problem. I showed them my Immigration Letter, which confirms that my Visa had been extended, but, apparently, not long enough. Anyways, after 15 minutes they gave me a special stamp on my boarding card, and I was free to leave.
A Little Taste Of South Korea
On my way back to Germany I had a long stopover in the city of Oppan Gangnam style: SEOUL.
Of course, I´d asked my friend Shoko, who is half Asian, for some food recommendations and she told me to try the national dish called Bibimbab. It was truly delicious.
I was glad I had a proper stopover this time because it is. On my way to Fiji I had two red-eye-flights of twelve hours each, which had been incredibly exhausting. Also, I must have picked up the flu or something during my last couple of days in Fiji. I felt sick, had a fever and a bad cold, which made flying even worse. It really was a shame I had to leave South Korea the next day already, but I´m glad I got the chance to experience at least a tiny bit of Asian culture. On Thursday, I caught a flight back to Frankfurt and twelve hours later touched down on the other side of the world, in the snow with black ice on the streets. So surreal.