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Best Travel Advice? Keep A Journal!

2007 We started our travel adventure in March of 2007, writing down our thoughts and feelings on the brand-new Travelpod site to keep our own travel journal we could share. Some of our first thoughts were hectic and scared… Cheryl “I just left my job of 16 years to prepare for this adventure! Tampa will be where it all starts. We are just planning right now – although we are trying not to plan it too much. I want the experience to be great without so many pre-conceived notions of the where’s and when’s!” Lisa “I woke up from a dream so real my heart was still pounding — I [ ... ]

Photo of the Day – Slope Point, NZ

As far South as you can get on the South Island of New Zealand. Due south from Slope Point it is 4,803 kilometers to the South Pole – we’re really that close to Antarctica! Slope Point is only accessible by a 20 minute walk through some of the most beautiful sheep pastures you could ever imagine – luckily we made it before September when the path is closed for lambing season!

Photo of the Day – Tui Bird

The Tui Bird! Quite the singer, the Tui is a member of the honeyeater family and can only be found on the islands of New Zealand. With vocalizations that sound as though a small symphony orchestra is tuning up for a performance, listening to the Tui is a unique experience. Considered to be highly intelligent, these birds have the capacity to exactly mimic human speech. This can be quite unnerving when walking alone in a quiet forest! This colorful character kept us company for several kilometers as we tramped along the track at Bluff, singing us a new song every time [ ... ]

10,000 Bulas – A Fijian Language Lesson

From the moment we stepped onto the airplane bound for Fiji, we were greeted with BULA! their universal word of welcome. And the Bulas haven’t stopped since! Fijians definitely live up to their reputation as the Friendliest People on Earth! BULA is Hello, To Your Health, Welcome; a smile and a nod on the street, a shout from the window from a small child, a chorus from a cluster of teenagers in the park, a lilting melody from a smiling Fijian woman. “Bula! Bula!” says the man walking down the road with a machete in his hand and fresh bananas slung over [ ... ]

XCom Global – Keeping Connected on the Road

One of the biggest challenges on the road is finding a good (and low cost) internet connection so we can continue to keep up with our blogs and stay in contact with family and friends.  Sometimes we would find free internet spots, but more often than not there were charges.  When we arrived in New Zealand, we were also hit with pretty stiff limits on internet usage.  Many places would offer “free” internet but it was limited to 50mb.  Just turning on our MacBook Pro used a majority of that MB limit!  The standard costs were approximately 200MB for $20 [ ... ]

Life on a Dairy Farm

This post is part of our Will Work 4 Travel adventure where this month we lived with a wonderful New Zealand couple on a working DAIRY FARM! It’s all about being about to duck out of the way quickly when something unpleasant starts coming your way! – Cheryl and Lisa DAIRY LIFE We left the little town of Edendale in New Zealand with a new found respect for those who make their living on a dairy farm! Days start early here. By 5am everyone is up chasing after the seemingly never-ending batch of chores to be done. Evenings are long as well. Cows have to [ ... ]

Fiji Kids Means Fiji Smiles!

                      Driving around Fiji was a wonderful experience.  The people here are truly some of the friendliest in the world!  Here we ran into some kids playing in their village, having a great time outside.  No X-Box here!

Paddy Hurts Her Foot

Poor, poor Paddy! As you can see by her rolling around on her back that she’s quickly learned to get as much sympathy as possible from us with her injury. We’re not sure exactly what happened as she’s an outside Fijian doggie, but one afternoon she came up limping with a torn dew claw and a very pitiful look on her face. Back home this would mean a trip to the vet, a few stitches, some medicine and all would be well. Here in rural Fiji, it’s a different story.  Because getting veterinary help is not an easy task, we tried [ ... ]

Indian Curry Cooking Class

This post is Part 5 of the Livin’ in Fiji – A House Sitter’s Story Indian Curry Cooking Class As I’m eating the leftovers from our Indian Curry Cooking Class at the Sea View Restaurant in Savusavu, I’m still amazed that we actually cooked this! The brilliant hues of fresh vegetables, golden pieces of perfectly seasoned walu fish and I can’t forget the chewy, but fluffy roti with the perfectly charred bubbles. It’s tastes as wonderful for breakfast as it did last night when we made it! A hands-on, in-the-kitchen Indian cooking class for $15 Fiji dollars, plus we get to eat everything [ ... ]

Making Copra

As we drove around Fiji we often saw these copra kilns.  For many people, and especially in the Fijian villages, the production of Copra is a primary source of income.  With the coconut trees so prevalent across the island you can see why it is a popular activity. Making copra is not an easy task.  Coconuts are gathered and then cut open and halved.  The coconut meat is then dried – most often using a kiln shown above.  Many locals who use the kiln will bring the dried product to the copra mill for final production.  When the copra production [ ... ]