We chose Fiji as our honeymoon destination.
We spend 10 nights at two of the resorts in Fiji, the first was the Sheraton Royal Denarau:
(no picture of the Sheraton... yet)
We spent the first two days lounging around, waiting for one of our suitcases to arrive. Seems either Reno Air or Pacific Air thought it would be a nice challenge for newlyweds to deal without one piece of luggage for two whole days. Well we showed them! Dave had recently bought a set of oil paints, which were in that missing suitcase, but the books I brought to read up on oil painting were in my bookpack, so I wasn't delayed (much).
Viti Levu, the biggest island, is where we were for the first four days. This is where we really had our taste of the Fijian culture. We took an hour long bus ride to the southern side of the island, then an hour long boat ride up through the lush jungle mountains to a remote villiage where a group of families live. Grouped as a tribe, deep in the heart of a formerly cannibal region, the tribe has made way to have tourists visit.
The visitors form groups, much like visiting tribes for other regions, where the tribe is led by a chief. Dave was "chosen" as the chief for our tribe. As custom has it, the chiefs lead the men to greet the local chief, and the women follow, carrying all the gear.
Once the local chief greets the visitors, they all gather in a meeting room for the ritual Kava drink; again with the chiefs in front, the men next, and the women behind. Boy did Grace get a taste of discrimination ;-)
Kava, a plant that grows best in the Fijian mountains, has recently become known for its medicinal value in treating flu, and supposedly cancer; although it's also a narcotic, which Grace says numbed her tougue a little.
Anyways, the Kave is dried, and when visitors come, it's ground into small particles, added to water, strained, and tasted during a ceremony. The first chief (Dave) drinks first -- talk about peer pressure -- followed by the men, and then the women.
We took a small tour of thier land, ate some of their food, and danced some of their dances. Then, as the modern world would have it, they sold some of their crafts.
I'd have to say that after witnessing the people along the drive to this remote villiage, that a lot of people sit around not doing much; and that the Fijians don't feel obligated to hurry. Time has a different pace in Fiji. And they all talk about "Fijian time".
The second location was Musket Cove: