Fiji Community Service Day 1 Today we woke up to another sunny day. We enjoyed another traditional Fijian breakfast and then went out onto the field to play a game called Birdie on the Perch. After that, we headed out to our work site. The day consisted of carrying bags of sand back and forth from the beach to the site. It was enjoyable because we had the assistance of some of the village children. After, we played our own game of touch football and a game of soccer with the villagers. As the day was winding down, we all took showers and got dressed for another traditional dinner. As a group, we sat down and completed our nightly meeting. The girls finished off their night with a game of Never Have I Ever, while the boys went to sleep.
Fiji Community Service Day 2
Today we woke up and had another friendly breakfast. After, we went to the field to get warmed up for the day by playing Bear, Salmon, Mosquito! Soon enough we were called back to work. We started off the day by carrying more bags to the work site. Shortly after, however, we started shoveling rocks for the foundation. After that, we began to mix the concrete. The boys were the main ones mixing the concrete in, with much difficulty. The girls did the smoothing of the cement. After we finished the sidewalk, our work was complete! To end it off, we wrote a huge ARCC sign in the sidewalk followed by our names. Then we went back and enjoyed a freezing cold shower, followed by another nice dinner.
Today we woke up disappointed to see rain. We ended up changing our plans from going to Paradise Island to Ravi Ravi where we would teach school- our second part of community service. We made our own lunches of peanut butter and egg salad. The rest of the day was ours to just hang out. Some people went to sleep while others played some intense card games!
We made our own breakfast this morning then quickly boarded our boat to Ravi Ravi. When we reached the village, we immediately headed to the library to sort books. After lunch, we split up to teach grades first through sixth while some of us continued in the library. We all had different activities with the classes. For example, the first and second graders painted and read books, while the fifth and sixth graders were doing math problems. After school, some of us played ultimate frisbee on the rugby pitch. Then we hung out, showered, and relaxed before a great dinner of burritos!! After dinner, we had the group activity of the game Mafia. We played numerous rounds! Then we called it a night knowing that tomorrow would be tough.
Ravi Ravi Day 2
We woke up and had a breakfast consisting of oatmeal. Then we spilt up in our groups again to finish teaching and organizing the library. The first and second graders did more painting and learned about recycling. The class ended in a large paint fight. The third and fourth graders corrected their homework while the fifth and sixth graders went to the computer lab. After school, we packed up our things and went to their community center to watch the children perform some songs. It was rough saying goodbye to all the new friends we made. Our remarkable journey was only beginning by departing to go to Paradise Island- our own private island. We took a short boat ride through clear blue water to the isolated island containing pearl white sand and picturesque palm trees. Not even a post card could display the beauty of the island. After setting up the tents, the cook crew began cooking a meal of lamb and potatoes while everyone else sat around the bonfire listening to Sam play the guitar while singing songs. Finally, we enjoyed the feast! Shout out to Brian for perfect lamb and potatoes! After dinner, we all spit up and explored the eight minute walk around the island. Sitting together on your own private island with your best friends is a once and a lifetime experience. Some of us attempted to sleep on the beach, but chickened out when it started to lightly drizzle. The night was over for some, while the others chatted around the bonfire until 3:00 am.
Today we woke up to our own leisure. Some woke up at 8:30am, while others woke up at 12:00pm. The morning was open to whatever you wanted. Most people took an hour to sit alone on the beach- without iPods, cameras, or other people. It was really low key and a personal day. Some showered in the ocean while others read books at the water front. For lunch, we had tuna and Roti sandwiches! After lunch, we sadly packed up and left Paradise Island. Our next journey began when we went back to Benga for our goodbye ceremony. The night consisted of kava and dancing with the villagers. It was really an unforgettable experience.
Journal: The Great Barrier Reef
For the past four days we have been exploring the deep seas of the Great Barrier Reef! The beauty and magnificence of the reef can be compared to living a scene from the movie Finding Nemo. We saw everything from small rainbow fish to terrifying reef sharks. Sea Turtles were also present during our stay! The advanced divers were lucky enough to experience a night dive where flashlights were the only source of light. During these dives spent our time on an incredible yacht, trying to keep our balance to while exploring the fancy rooms. Upon arrival back in Cairns, we then explored the Tjupakai, the Australian aboriginals, and learned all the peculiar aspects of their culture. Since we are in a bit of rush to make a flight to Sydney we are going to say a phrase or sentence about every individual in our group.