After a quick shower, slap some slop on the chops, fling the cases in the back of the car and by 10am we were off. Halfway down the road I yelled "Bookclub book!" We were meant to drop in my book to the neighbour so she could take it with her to the final meet up before Christmas. Slamming of brakes, heads flung forward, u-turn, some obligatory swearing from the driver, one book deposited in her mailbox...then we were off...again.
The traffic was pretty good, we didn't get caught up in any of the major SH1 road improvements and we were parking in the pre-booked car park right by the terminal in less than one and half hours. When those road improvements are completed it will be even quicker.
I had to abandon Joe with the bags as the litre of water I drank in the spa needed to leave by the emergency exit! Mad dash to the ladies and relief...phew.
'Excuse me sir, madam is it just the two of you travelling today?'
'Yis (with about 200 plus people I nearly said) '
'Then please come over (not a rubber glove in sight) I'll check you in here.'
'Ta very much chuck'
'Sirmadam (one word), can I tell you of our special today? We are offering two for the price of one business class upgrades, are you interested Sirmadam?' It was a pretty good deal.
Does a bear shit in the woods? 'Yes we are interested.'
30 mins later and we are in the Quantas business class lounge sipping champagne (well I was) and helping ourselves to the posh nosh on the buffet.
The flight time today was two hours forty minutes and included a very nice meal on proper plates with real cutlery...ohh and cocktails. Proper nice it was.
I was under instructions from Sue to take photos from the plane in the air, here they are....
First the route
Taking off leaving Auckland behind and flying over the top of NZ
Cocktails and canapes
First sightings of Fiji as we came into land, the white line is the coral reef that encircles the whole of the island with some gaps to allow sailing vessels to enter and leave. The gaps are usually made from the fresh water rivers that ebb into the ocean.
Fiji airport was hot and humid, with a slow moving queue to go through passport control, the officer was by far and away the friendliest custom officer ever.
Bula (boolah): hello. Vinaka (vee na ka): thank youOnce the luggage was collected, mine now complete with a slightly munted pull out handle we went to find where our transport to the resort was. The transfer took just under two hours and we were glad to get there, it was well worth the wait as we were to find out over the next 9 days.
Upon arrival every new guest is welcomed by the beating of the Lali (drum) Joe thought this meant something entirely different! See a similar welcome here.
The porters took our luggage as we checked in, I must tell you of when we checked in, it's a bit of a standing joke in this house that when Joe get's near any electrical equipment, especially computers, they slow down or crash, and that's before he's even laid a finger on them!. Anyway just as we were giving details etc, the power went off and crashed the computer, it soon came back on but not before I had told the lady on reception what I've just told you. Well bugger me if it doesn't do it again! We looked at Joe and he protested his innocence and said he didn't even work anywhere near their power stations! Then she said 'Are you sure Joe!" It was so funny.
Our porter Pat then came over, introduced himself, shook our hands, asked our names, 'Bula' , and showed us to our room, not before he jumped on the trolley and road it down a slope at speed laughing!' We were officially on Fiji time'
There was a surprise waiting for us in our room, a bottle of bubbly and fruit. We had to rebook this holiday earlier in the year as our passports hadn't returned in time for the August booking. We went for November as it was going to be a good few weeks after Joe's knee op and a few weeks after our wedding anniversary. Amy in the Flight centre must have made a note of this as there was a card with a message from the Resort and staff, nice touch..
Night view of the pool from our balcony
..and a glimpse of the sea
After a while we felt like something to eat and the Italian restaurant was still open..just, we went for a pizza chosen from the very extensive menu. And then feeling travel weary we went to bed.
Hopefully I haven't rambled on too much but I'm primarily doing this for us as a reminder of what was the most amazing holiday. More to come tomorrow. See ya