12th october 2012
After finally achieving paradise in Mantaray Island of Fiji, I could be forgiven that the Mantaray Island Resort is probably the best hotel I’ve ever stayed in.
Waking up from my plush dorm bed, it was still darkness with a hint of twilight coming through. Yes I was up to try and catch the sunrise in paradise.
Getting myself plonked on the beach with still ruffled bed hair, I gazed at the horizon whilst I enjoyed the calming sound of the sea crashing its slight waves in front of me. Then the sun rose…behind the wall of a cove. Sorely disappointed but having the beach to myself with the lightening sky and swigging a bottle of water. That’ll do me!
After having a HUGE Breakfast Buffet (seriously, they know how to feed you here), I caught up with the girls and we all went snorkelling again. And again….and again. And in between some sunbathing. It’s truly a hard life!
I should say at this point that I decided to take a break from blogging. I mean, here I am in paradise and I really didn’t want to be staring at a computer screen getting frustrated with the wifi signal. So no blogging for me it is!
While we chilled out in the morning, we heard the staff was putting on a morning activity, and that my friends is Coconut Bracelet making! Gathering around, I got a thrill when they cleaved some coconuts in half and I had to resist the urge jumping down, gathering up the 2 halves and putting them on my nipples to shout out to the other girls ‘look sisters! I’m one of you!’ Maybe it was a good thing that I didn’t… but cracking away with my band of coconut that I carved out, I used wet sand and rock, as shown, to sand off the skin of the coconut. The after, sandpapered to make sure the inside was smooth. A little bit of varnish later, then voila! My own bracelet that I made! Well, rather, after the day went by, I swore that the coconut was still growing because the bracelet became a full on arm band! I didn’t care, it made me look all manly and warrior like. I could be found strutting my stuff along the beach generating admiring glances from the people I walked by. I still don’t know to this day what they were laughing at after I passed them…
After more sunbathing, we heard the drums for lunch, and back on the sand we were afterwards and met more people who came off the Yasawas Flyer that afternoon – Lynsey, Lisa and Karen. Chilling out, we were introduced to our second activity of the day..Kayaking!
Bringing out the boat, I was slightly nervous being balanced on this contraption. Not because I didn’t believe in my paddling ability but rather I decided to wear my hearing aid. I would have hated to miss out the banter but I did know that one false move of balance, I would be plunged into the waters of the South Pacific and my hearing aid would be forever no more! But I’m glad to say that my hearing aid survived! But I didn’t care. I kayaked across South Pacific Waters to the next island of Barefoot Island! This was after an hour of intense paddling, sometimes against the current! But it was something I could tick off in my ‘proud list’. I kayaked across the South Pacific!
At Barefoot Island, we were shown how to break open a coconut using our bare hands (party trick alert!) and I became smug as I was the only one who could do so. So what if I was a man, I felt…extremely manly. Forget Robinson Crusoe, you need the Rex to see you through on a desert island! After paddling in the beach, we turned back before a storm looked like it was about to brew up.
But before we could go off and shelter for the hours ahead, I knew I wanted to go snorkelling again. Grabbing Claire, we plunged into the waters around the reef and within minutes, we saw our first ray! Granted not a Mantaray as we were desperately hoping as it’s the end of Mantaray Season but a small ray anyway! After much gesticulating between us, we followed silently behind the ray as it stopped there and then to feed but soon, it soon escaped from us. I couldn’t believe it! A full on ray! I’ve never seen a ray in its natural habitat so it was very very awesome to see one up close! I apologise I couldn’t take a photo but my camera and water don’t really mix!
After a scrummy dinner, we headed back down to the beach where the staff decided to play some evening games…very physical games. We played a game I thought was absolutely hilarious and really gets your mind and body moving. You had to be the quickest. We played a game called Royals. You are partnered with a girl, in my case Lynsey, and you have to do a position with your partner when the word is shouted out. Let me explain:
Princess – Lynsey had to jump into my arms and I hold her.
Castle – I had to go down on all fours and Lynsey sits on my back.
Queen – Lynsey jumps on my back as if I am giving her a piggyback.
King – I jump on Lynsey’s back as so.
It was hugely funny and soon everyone was sweating like mad to change positions as quick as possible!
Unfortunately, Lynsey and I lost out but we were proud of Katie and Claire who managed to win the game for the prize of some pretty sweet cocktails!
The rest of the night, we chatted and lazed about in the hammocks, but at the end…I hobbled back to the dorm, seems like I got a royal back pain!