Eat, Drink and Be Merry

A regular student remarked recently how resilient I was to travel to parts lesser known. I smiled and said ‘thanks’.

He was wrong.

Comfort has gotten the better part of valour, and I’ve escaped the “hardships” of inland Nadi to more habitable parts. At least for a couple of days’ trial.

The downsides of inland Nadi are

  • the lack of air-conditioning, the biggest problem, although mostly only at nights. But a few nights of little sleep, and murderous black clouds are hovering overhead.
  • the crawling internet speeds. Almost Ok for watching youtube. But not good enough to earn even a meagre crust online video teaching, where I’m at the mercy of unforgiving Japanese students.
  • the environs. There’s nowhere to stroll without fear of being mown down by Mad Max trucks.
  • the difficulty of getting anywhere fast.

All of this dawned on me when the student kindly wished I was enjoying my “holiday”. Hah!

American physicist Richard Feynman said “… you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.”

And I got to thinking why I’m here. Not to explore the hinterland, or in the cause of anthropology. Not on a hunt for rare butterflies, or to sip pink cocktails poolside, or for geological surveys. Not at all.

Intermittent doses of physical stress are fine, but prolonged mental stress will have me nearing 80 shortly.

I’m here to sit out the winter, do some work and some swimming, meet some locals, see some sights, and soak up some vitamin D and local food.

Which is all by way of justifying a weekend in Martintar on the main Nadi thoroughfare. It’s got

  • air-conditioning
  • decent internet
  • proximity to the Beach. Today it took me $5 FJD and ‘only’ 90 minutes to travel to the beach and back, go for a swim, and catch up the staff at the Ideal Bed & Breakfast, my last lodgings.
  • shops etc within quick walking distance

I’ve booked a weekend, but I may well extend it. I’ll fret about the budget later.

As the infamous Donald Kessel ( classmate 1974 – 1976, now inventor ) said “eat, drink, and be merry, and tomorrow we starve”.

UPDATE: The place has worked out better than expected! It even has internet speeds passable enough to teach some Japanese students. BUT I’ve just found out I can’t extend my stay because someone had already booked it.

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