Things I perceive as different/fun/awesome about Fiji and Fijians
-Doors open in. You know when you go to stores and restaurants the doors open out, not here, everything opens in. I always forget this and look like a fool.
-Tang. Fijians love Tang. I know what most of you are thinking: “I didn’t even think Tang was around anymore”. But nooo my little Americans friends, Tang is very much alive and well. I’m pretty sure I drink enough Tang here to go to outer space.
-Time is relative. The pace of life here is much much slower. When you want to be on time somewhere, show up an hour late. When you want to be fashionably late… show at least 3 hours after the specified time. Ironically, the only thing that shows up early and leaves early is the bus. How people get anywhere sometimes amazes me.
-Pirated movies are a part of life. Apparently they are now regulated… I have yet to see this happen. I know its wrong… but movies, for $2.00… hard to pass up especially on a Peace Corps budget. I just watched Inception at home last night (ridiculous by the way… wow).
- So in the states I ate chicken and turkey and occasional red meat but I just never loved the taste, I’m weird I know… Now I am almost entirely vegetarian BUT, it’s not because it’s different here, it’s because they don’t debone anything. Take a bite into any piece of meat in a soup, or rice, or chop suey and you run the risk of being stabbed by a rogue bone in your mouth… terrifying really.
-So when an American runs into someone they know, whether it is a friend, an acquaintance, or even someone they aren’t particularly fond of, a common first question is “how are you?” But in Fiji they say “where are you going?” It totally catches you off guard at first and kind of comes across as abrupt and nosey but it’s just there where of saying hi!… so hello world.. Where are you going ????
-Supermarkets are everywhere. Seriously, on every corner there is a supermarket… they compete like CVS and Walgreens,. Supermarkets here are about 5 isles wide so you’d think they would specialize in different items, but they all sell the same things. There are two nicer supermarkets: RB Patel and MH. They are nothing compared to Publix but they are still pretty good. I live in an area where there is a bunch of expats so these stores occasionally have more western items… but for a price. I could buy a Cosmo here... for a whopping $22 or an 8 pack of Kraft singles for like $12.
-Fiji Rule of thumb: if food is on sale then there is a good chance it has expired or it will it expire tomorrow. Tricky tricky tricky… Always check labels!
-In general, Fijians don’t like cheese that much… I know. Ridiculous. The only time cheese is really consumed is on pizza. Here there are exactly three kinds of cheese: Rewa mild cheddar, Rewa tasty cheese, and Rewa pizza cheese… As you can see they got real creative with the names. Actually, tasty and pizza cheese aren’t bad and I have made a banging Mac and Cheese out of them.
-Okay so this is going to sound weird… You know when you tell someone your hone number you say the first three numbers and then the second four i.e. 867 (pause) 5309. In Fiji it’s not like that! They say four then three or five then two or whatever makes sense to them… ah this may seem like such a minor thing but it can really get complicated. 87-75309, 8775-309, 87753-09…. madness. After this rant, I know that you are thinking the whole blonde hair thing is proving quite true… judge away.
All right everyone. That’s all for now. Miss you all!!!