Photos taken this morning…An early morning on another rainy day…A blazing year ago photo below!

Breadfruit growing in the yard, a popular item in the islands. Here’s a good article on breadfruit. We’d love to try this which is the size of a grapefruit but, it contains 26 grams of carbohydrates and 11 grams of sugar in 1/4 of a fruit.

Cabin fever hasn’t set in yet. We’re good. The cool breezes, the sound of the rain pattering on the tile roof, the birds singing, and the contrast of colors in the bright green vegetation inspired me to take photos at 6:30 this morning.

Already showered and dressed after a 5:45 bolt out of bed, following Tom’s 5:30 rising, our day began on a bright note, as usual, rain or shine. With 70% to 90% rain expected over the five-day forecast, we keep our chins up, knowing eventually this will end. 

Part of us accepts the premise that nature needs the rain as we watch the vegetation bloom and brighten into a plethora of shades of color. Each rainy morning, we notice subtle differences as they escalate into a splash of colors some hardly recognizable to our eyes. Who’s to complain?

The kitchen towels never dried in the rain.  Today, we’ll hand these off to Usi with our dirty laundry and she’ll dry them.

When the sun shines again, we’ll begin to tackle the list of sites to see during our next outing with Ratnesh.  In the interim, we’ll continue our regular and highly entertaining visits to the village, rain, or shine. No doubt, it’s good to get out. 

Not having a rental car could be challenging for most long term travelers.  Somehow, we established a level of acceptance of this fact, that sometimes renting a car doesn’t work. In the case here, as we’ve mentioned in the past, a four wheel drive vehicle would be required. 

Such a vehicle is outrageously expensive in the long term on this small island, higher than the rent on the house. We were well aware of this when we booked this location when Mario had explained in an email that we’d have a great driver. We have no regrets now.

Ratnesh is comparable to having a personal tour guide. Having lived here all of his life, he’s educating us as we travel about, not only on local customs and lifestyle but also, on the scenery. Also, many rough roads are best avoided on one’s own, due to navigability issues. On our own we wouldn’t have had a clue as to which roads to avoid, driving beyond the Savusavu area.

The local ferry travels from Savusavu to Nadi in Viti Levu. It’s a long overnight trip arriving at 5 am.  Sleeping cabins are available for an additional cost.

We’ve had drivers in Belize, Kenya, South Africa, and Morocco. Not having a rental car in these countries never impeded our ability to embrace our surroundings and in most cases, enhanced it with the competency and knowledge of our drivers. 

How easily we recall Okee Dokee in South Africa, with whom we’ve stayed in touch as she prepares for her upcoming wedding. We happily watch for photos and the progression of her plans on Facebook and also write back and forth in email. We couldn’t be more thrilled for her!

The times we spent, the three of us, driving through Marloth Park and the surrounding areas will always remain as some of the favorite memories of our world travels. At times, we all laughed so hard, we cried. 

Our single chaise lounge is available for sunning when the suns appear.

Each week she and I traveled the long distance to Komatipoort to grocery shop and to purchase more data.  During those drives, we engaged in typical “girl talk” as well as stopping for wildlife photos. She’d help me find items at the market which often left us in fits of laughter.

Often, we stopped to check out the products offered by farmers and vendors who’d sit on a box on the side of the road for hours at a time. She’d purchase lychee nuts and I’d purchase avocados in a huge bag of 10, always more than I could eat which I shared with her and the household helpers. We’ll always remember those special times with Okee Dokee.

Each country we’ve visited has left us with special memories. We anticipate this will be the case as we continue on our journey. When perusing our itinerary this morning, I couldn’t fathom how quickly the time has passed and how soon we’ll be in New Zealand (in three months) and Bali (in less than seven months).

Having the experience of seeing so much of the South Pacific by the time we depart in 18 months, with six upcoming cruises a few of which will circumvent Australia, surely we’ll feel satisfied that we’ve had a good perspective of this part of the world.

A colorful little orange flower blooming on this white lily.

So much more of the world awaits us. Had we started this journey 20 years ago, we’d still have only been able to see a portion of what the world has to offer. The time we have left is in the hands of our higher power and the degree to which we can maintain a level of good health.

With our diligent budgeting, which we’ll continue to adjust for inflation and the value of the dollar throughout the world, we expect it will become more challenging to find affordable options in years to come. Rather than risk our financial stability, we’ll continually adjust our expectations accordingly.

For today as we sit back on yet another rainy day, we’ll resume our search to fulfill the one remaining gap in our schedule (39 days) over the next 18 months. From there, we’re watching for new cruise postings yet to appear, to take us back out to sea to continue on our chosen path.

Have a happy and fulfilling day!

Photo from one year ago today, October 13, 2014:

How can it be a full year ago that we took this photo in Waikiki Beach?  The time has flown. For more details as we wound down our time in Oahu, soon to move to Maui, please click here.

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