Two days and counting…Packing has begun…Favorite Viti Levu scenes…

The pool at our vacation home was cleaned three times a week, making it appealing to use. We took this photo on one of the very few sunny days but we also used it for cooling off on many hot, humid, and cloudy days.

Here we are, repacking once again. When I got up this morning the temptation was to start packing before getting ready for the day. Instead, I forced myself to do my usual routine knowing once dressed I’d have coffee, prepare and upload today’s post and then motivated to pack as much as possible to get it out of the way.

Having to leave out clothing for Monday’s morning flight and dining out in Sydney on Monday evening and, boarding the ship the following day can be tricky. With two upcoming weeks on the cruise ship, the less clothing we get dirty, the better. 

If we can wear the same clothes from 7:00 am Monday, showering and changing underwear only, until late Tuesday afternoon, we’ll be able to change into fresh clothes when our luggage is delivered to our cabin before dinner.

Lily in the pond at Arts Village, which we visited often for its nice restaurants and grocery shopping which proved to be adequate for our needs.

This way, we leave only a few dirty items in the ship’s laundry bag to be washed after five or six days into the cruise. We simply can’t last a full two weeks without having the ship’s laundry service wash our clothing. 

On most two week cruises, we have our laundry done twice after they offer the usual promotion for USD $30, FJD $64 for one stuffed bag. The clean, neatly folded (not ironed) clothing is delivered the following day.

As much as we’ve tried hand washing some items on the ship, it just doesn’t work well.  Hanging clothes on the balconies is not permitted. Hanging wet clothes in the shower is pointless when it takes forever to dry in the tiny humid space.

A decorative playhouse in the pool of a resort is under renovation.

Tonight, we’ll finish our last meal at home, dining out tomorrow, our last evening. We’ve consumed almost all the food we had on hand except for 14 eggs, butter, and spices all of which we’ll leave behind. This time we’re not bringing any foodstuffs with us. We’ll start anew when we arrive in New Zealand on January 19th.

With all of our cruise clothing (anything that’s not a tee shirt or shorts) clean and hanging, today I’ll wrap each item individually in large plastic bags neatly folding the bags.

Using a plastic bag wrap is a surefire way of keeping clothes wrinkle-free. This is only important to us on cruises when we make every effort to look more “put together” for dinner. Otherwise, leaving clothes to hang in a humid climate while living in vacation homes eventually removes most wrinkles.

This tropical flower was new to us.

Today, Tom can’t seem to wipe the smile off his face.  I know he’s especially excited about the cruise and its two weeks of socialization. Anyone that knows Tom is aware of his friendly and sociable demeanor coupled with lots of laughter and storytelling.  Here comes the “shed!”

I’m not at all offended that he’s chomping at the bit to interact with “the boys”  and other couples. He’s certainly had his fill of me! If you asked him, he’d genuinely say he’s enjoyed every single day we spent alone together and I wholeheartedly agree. Although, the thought of sitting quietly chatting with other women is equally appealing to me. Girl time!

I’ve always been able to easily make friends with women young and old. In Minnesota, we both had many friends and couples with whom we socialized on a regular basis, often entertaining at our home or theirs. We’d be foolish to say we don’t miss that.

A 4 foot, 1.22 meters,  tall lawn decoration handmade with small vines
 befitting the Fijian style.

Cruising is an easy way to connect with other couples. We often plan a few meals and outings, often staying in touch long after the cruise has ended. Based on passengers Tom’s communicated with in CruiseCritic, we already have dinner plans organized and on our calendar. 

With socialization almost all day we get a major dose of fun often staying with us until the next cruise. With several more cruises planned over the next 17 months, we have no doubt we’ll find each fulfilling and rewarding.

The sun keeps peeking in and out.  Hopefully, its sunny after I finish packing to allow for a quick swim in the pool and a 40 minute dose of Vitamin D with only four sunny days in this past almost 28 days, one last plunge would be great.

I just came back inside from hanging a few remaining items on the clothesline, receiving no less than 10 mosquito bites. Unfortunately, I hadn’t put on enough DEET and now will pay the price with five or six days of constant itching. With all the rain this month, the mozzies are on a rampage. I should have known better!
Have a wonderful New Year’s Day to those still celebrating on the other side of the International Dateline!  See you tomorrow.

Photo from one year ago today, January 2, 2015:
One last photo of the second house we rented next door to the first, on the Big Island.  We particularly enjoyed the more modern, more well-maintained second house with a small pool. For more details, please click here.

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