MOD SQUAD in FIJI - PART 2
delightful day on robinson crusoe island
23 September 2015
(Missed PART 1 of our Fijian Adventure??)
When I was in my twenties, the heaviest item in my travelling gear was my camera, my suitcase was brimmed with at least 5 pairs of shoes for every occasion and at least 3 toiletries bags containing lip glosses in every shade imaginable… let’s face it, what girl wants to be caught out without their favourite 15 lip glosses in a foreign country? Where was I? Oh, yes, travelling in my twenties on a budget, when my hubby would be presented with a neatly typed hectic schedule in an attempt to pack in as many attractions as humanly possible at least three weeks prior to departure. Those were the organised days! These days, the most amount of planning I do is to just get there.
If we survive the journey there with baby dinosaurs then that’s all MD cares about until we go home again. If I can fit in a spa treatment somewhere over the next 8 days, well…Hallelujah! And so, it was with this “devil may care” attitude that we descended on the beautiful staff at the tour desk at the Outrigger Fiji Resort. “Um, Bula… Hello.. (breathe) I don’t really care what tours we do but I would like to check out one of the islands we may or may not take the stroller we haven’t decided yet is it possible to have our own boat cause one of my kids may or may not start crying uncontrollably for reasons that I cannot fathom and we don’t want to disturb the other travellers how long is the boat ride is it kid friendly will there be other families or is it more a couples’ thing cause we don’t want to ruin someone else’s holiday. (Inhale sharply) Wait! Did you say a Water Park can my toddler go swimming there are there shops on the island? (Hyperventilate)
It was exhausting listening to myself. I really need to just chill out a little. And chilled, were the staff at the tour desk. They must be used to overstressed Aussie mothers that haven’t quite cotton onto the concept of “island time”. Ironic I know, considering we come from the Island State?! And, it was with a reassuring smile that I was handed a brochure for a day trip to Robinson Crusoe Island. “It’s totally family friendly”, she calmly explained, “you will get to the boat by minibus and the boat will take you out to the island where you will spend the day at the Water Park.” At that point, more concerns did pop into my head but I decided for some odd reason to just live on the wild side and hope for the best. It might have been as a result of the perfect timed iced tea that silenced my concerns.
And so it was on the early morning of the second day of our adventure that we found ourselves being punctually picked up for the 25 minute journey by minibus to the boat. When we got to the “wharf”, if you can call it that, we were given orange juice and a biscuit while we waited for our turn to board. The little boats were open on all sides. I was pleased to see lots of young families on board with babies and toddlers and strollers. We had elected not to bring a pram for this trip and I was glad of the decision but the tour guides were certainly very accommodating for those that had a stroller. It was a calm, enjoyable journey out to the island. I actually don’t remember how long it took, perhaps 15 minutes or so. As we cleared out to the calm open blue sea, we could see the island ahead and were greeted by sweet Fijian music as they awaited our arrival. The girls were excited that they were singing and waving at us and they felt very special.
Once we arrived on the island, we were ushered to the main sitting area with undercover picnic tables for a display of traditional dancing and the official welcome kava ceremony. The girls were enchanted by the singing and fire dancing, and B even tried some kava. We were then given a rundown of all the activities available on the island. I would highly recommend having a go on the fly board that Daddy dinosaur bravely enjoyed. The turtle viewing was another highlight. The girls got their hair braided and hung out with the friendly island cat. Massages were also available but on this occasion, I just chose to relax on the stunning beach with the girls who enjoyed paddling in the very calm, shallow water. It was a perfect island for young children to enjoy watching the little fishes whilst cooling down in the water.
A scrumptious buffet lunch was served. There is a bar on the island for beer and cocktails, as well as ice creams for the children. The hosts were hospitable and absolutely adore small children. It was actually very relaxing to know that people didn’t mind your kids running around and well, just being kids – happy, noisy, excited, energetic. As we entered mid afternoon, something exciting was about to happen. Everyone was being gathered on the beach. Our hosts had decided, perhaps after a few beers at lunch, that they were going to attempt the world’s first fire dancing display on the fly board. Why not? What could possibly go wrong? And so, it was with much excitement, we all gathered on the beach and witnessed the craziest spur of the moment stunt on this idyllic tropical island. Amazingly, no one got hurt and it was quite an incredible display. It was the perfect end to the perfect day as we boarded our boat back to the mainland. Our day on Robinson Crusoe Island will forever be etched in our memories as a beautiful and fun day that we shared together as a family.
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