3 April 2014

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I’m often surprised on Wednesday nights when I look at photos I’ve taken all week.  By then I have totally forgotten what I’d been looking at.  Here are fish being sold in the public market – they looked quite fresh.  There usually aren’t a whole lot of fish available right in the market – most days there aren’t any. Fish are brought in on the weekends, when customers are more likely to have money in their pockets. Same time Austin takes his baby chicks in to sell them.
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These are “kai” – river clams.   They can taste good when cooked by someone who is meticulous about cleaning them and who uses a lot of garlic.   A few weeks ago Junia was telling us how you find kai when he took the girls and me to the river – you dig in the river sand with your toes.  We are too far inland to get them, but in principle, about 10 kilometers down river, that is how the women are harvesting these guys.   Austin remembers when he was in Fiji in the 70s, the kai were double the current size or bigger.   He says they are also moving up river – because of sea level rise, there is a bit of salt in the water further inland now.
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In the same spot of the market, there was this bundle of yumminess – mangrove crabs.   Just the one bundle and it got sold pretty quickly.
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ON THE ROAD TO SUVA
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I forgot all about it…..  I was in the bus, and it was raining like crazy , again.  Not such a big deal, until we approached the coastal town of Navua.    Son-of-a-gun – Nauva was flooded out!
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We could not go into town, but had to stop and let the passengers for Navua out on Queen’s Highway at the intersection.    
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IN SUVA
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I forgot all about this, too.   Walking from where I was staying to where I had a meeting, I decided to make friends with the beautiful bougainvillea that some loving gardener had planted.
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One of the nicest qualities of bougainvillea is the variety of colors of the flowers .
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But another wonderful quality is how easily they become pressed flowers and how long they hold their color after a week inside a book.    I resisted the temptation to demonstrate it with these.  Suva needs all the color it can get.
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ON THE ROAD BACK FROM SUVA
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This is the only thing I did remember.  This funny, funny pine tree that I have seen so many times.   Driving back it is right in your face at one spot of the road.
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Pine needles grow straight off the trunk, so the tree itself looks like a bottle brush …. or a man with a really hairy neck that needs shaving.
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Thanks to Austin for coming to Suva and giving me a ride home.  My out-the-bus-window skills would never have sufficed.
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6 thoughts on “3 April 2014

  1. What in the world are mangrove crabs? I couldn’t really distinguish them in the picture in terms of actual shape and size. And you must have eaten these to call them yummy?

    • Hey Laurel. They’re crabs that live in the mangroves, tropical trees that grow in seawater on the coast. They are lots larger than NC’s blue crabs (way smaller than Alaskan king crabs) – big old claws and really tasty. We eat them whenever we have the chance and are up for paying about $50 for dinner – that’s what a basket like this sells for now (about US$30). I just pulled a stock photo of one and will stick it in next week.

  2. Thanks for the dose of bougainvillea. My garden in Bangalore had vast quantities of those pink and white flowers. London has none!

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