As perfect as it is, in Fiji, there are two sides to the sun. My brother, sister and I planned from the beginning to acknowledge both. We refused to stay oblivious,
ignorant even, tanning on the luxurious side, when people were sweltering in the heat of a much harsher sun just a mile down. Even if the beam would strain our
eyes, we were determined to open them as wide as we could. It’s the easiest thing in the world to become accustomed to the poolside. We felt to really know Fiji,
we had to go further than the beach-front.
So we hired some bikes, and ventured out of the resort gates. A reality we’d been told about, but hadn’t seen for ourselves, focused into view. Smooth polished
buildings were replaced by shacks with broken roofs. Not even the blue sky could lift them from their seats below the black cement. As we kept riding, the houses
changed, but the people didn’t. Tired farmers waved and smiled as we rode past, always maintaing the ‘bula’ greeting. A kid sitting on the street gave me a smile I still
remember. It assured me that there is no tourist manual. The Fijians are just content with what they have. They are even happier to share it with others. Love, culture,
laughter. With our supposedly developed lifestyles, somehow we are still never quite as satisfied.
I love that about travel. It doesn’t just give you a place. It gives you a people. You see the way someone else lives, talks, and sees everything. Maybe it changes us,
because we start to question if we’re the ones doing it (life) right.
I couldn’t explain the experience without including that we found this shoot location next to an old lady’s house. I was pretty sure her dog was (playing) dead in the
grass when we stopped our bikes – when it shot up, I was relieved to find it was just relaxing, like everyone else. The lady came out, and gladly let us take some
photos in her backyard. We left shortly. Firstly, because we had to return the bikes, and secondly, because she was watching from her dark windows, along with her
eight other dogs the whole time. So more than ever, I hope you enjoy the photos, for this experience could have ended a whole lot differently
(maybe I just watch too many movies).