5 March 2015

2015-03-02 Natadola  R

Before I get on with my saga, I’ll take you on my slightly grumpy trip to the beach.   Pretty beach.  Two little dots in the water – neither was me.  We were supposed to do errands and THEN go to the beach, but SomeBody changed the plan.  I didn’t want to hit the shops in a salty state, so I stayed on the beach.

2015-03-02 Natadola stickers   R

Behold the flora: sand burrs.

2015-03-02 Natadola mozzie   Cr

Behold the fauna: blood-suckers.

2015-03-02 Natadola trash   R

Behold the evidence of thoughtless bipedal  creatures.

Kiki and Awtin at Natadola 2Mar15  R

But SomeBody and a little somebody had a good time.


Prologue  Six years ago Austin and I were preparing to celebrate our 30th anniversary.   We paid the plane tickets so all the kids plus the one son-in-law and one grandchild could all be here.   Austin thought we needed a lot more sleeping space so he had the 3-bedroom cottage built.   Work on the cottage stopped during the reunion:   the cottage was ready for occupancy two months after all the kids had left.

Chapter One – Work on the Pool Commences   Last year Austin and I were preparing to celebrate our 35th anniversary.  We paid the plane tickets so all the kids, all their spouses and all the grandkids could be here.   Austin and Akka decided that the POOL needed to be built so that everyone could enjoy it.

2014-08-07 pool 3 R

August 7 – the pool is getting started.  The kids aren’t coming til November, we have plenty of time.

2014-08-19 pool 2  R

August 19 – making some progress.  I thought it would go faster than this.

2014-09-10 pool  R

September 10 – Lord, it is taking forever!

2014-10-23  pool 1  R

October 23 – nearly done, but what a bizarre shape.

2014-10-30  pool constr 2  R

Chapter Two – The Pool is “Complete”

October 30 – the pool itself is more or less done.   The workers are working on the wall now.   The pool will be rain-fed from the roofs of our three buildings.

2014-10-15 dead trees  CR


This was, you might remember, the time of our never-ending drought that even caused the trees to lose their leaves.   Would it rain?   Would we get any water in our pool?

Chapter Three – The Kids Arrive

2014-11-19 pool in use 2  R

We got “this” much rain.  It was enough for playing a little.   I won’t tell you which grandson delivered a “floater” as soon as he got in, so which father promptly had to scoop it out, and stuff like that.   (Eventually, we WILL have a kiddy pool beside the big one.)

2015-01-22 pool 2  R

Chapter Four –  Finishing Touches  (2015 – the reunion was 2 months ago)

January 22 – We built steps down to the pool from the cottage.

2015-01-25 pool 2 too dirty to swim in  R

January 25 – It finally rains enough that the pool is full.  However, toads have been getting there and the water is too dirty to swim in.

2015-02-19 pool and gate  R

February 19 – We finish the fence around the entire perimeter and put in toad-proof gates as well.

2015-02-19 pool drained an d cleaned  R

We also drained it and cleaned it really well.

2015-02-26 full pool 2  R

February 26 – it is finally full again and is so much fun to play in with the big steps to hang out on.   Junia gives all the neighbor kids a swimming lesson when I am in Suva,

2015-02-26 pool waterfall 1  R

And Austin’s waterfall from the storage tank works beautifully.

Epilogue  –  The water is green again already.   We wait for the hardware company to get the pool filters they think will be in stock last month.  Next dry season we will paint the pool with pool paint, and some day we will build a tiny hangout shack by the pool and also put in that planned kiddy pool.    Some day I will have photos of a really finished pool.   I only wonder what project we’ll decide to undertake for our 40th anniversary, that will get finished around our 41st……

*    *    *

12 thoughts on “5 March 2015

  1. Let’s paint a beautiful mural around the wall… like waterfall stones with flowers and vines growing over it.. something that would match the rest of the setting! 🙂

    • Dad says the wall is too wet and the paint will flake off, so now his idea is to have moss growing on it. I liked the mural idea a lot better. Wish we could find some really waterproof paint!

  2. Well the pool is an interesting shape. I imagine part of it is to strengthen it. It looks like they built a good retaining wall to keep as much hill flow from reaching the pool. It is going to look great when the plants all get in place. I’m sure it will be a great asset to the property and lots of people will utilize it. It looked like those four guys were workers. Hope you are well. We are getting heavy show today. It is going to end up about 16 degrees Fahrenheit tonight and will be slick on the highways. We have about 5 inches of show so far.

    • “interesting shape” – that’s tactful! The front/straight part is a very strong retaining wall to hold all the water back. The rest is just made to fit the hill. There was no plan at all. And then, yes, you are right, there is a large retaining wall behind the pool to keep the hill from drifting downhill into it. You with your snow, and us with a hurricane heading more-or-less our way. Nature is determined to keep us on our toes.

  3. Hi Kim,

    I am preparing to move to Fiji, probably leaving Canada mid May. I really enjoy your blog. Do you have any hints or advice for me? I am bringing lots of stuff to help people and need to team up with a local service organization to help deal with it. It will be a total of about a hundred tons of various materials, tools, hundreds of stainless cooking pots and things that are useful for off grid living and family farming.

    That is a great series of pictures showing how you built the pool. But towards the end you say that the water is green already, in my pool I considered that a good thing. I put some fish in it to eat the mosquitoes, and had papyrus and other water plants in pots around the edges.

    And now I need to go and paint numbers on the shipping containers….

    All the best,


    • Hi George – BULA! It will be great having another goodhearted world citizen in Fiji. You really need to write to my husband who can point you to an NGO to team up with. He says that if you bring those goods in on your own, you are going to be charged customs duty on all of it! (15% of value – a really BIG bite!). He told me to give you his contact address here. So it is bowdenkerby (AT) yahoo {DOT} com As for the green pool, we’ve thought about doing it as a cement pond – the way you describe – but whatever we do we have to be able to really assure that the water is very very clean for swimming. We have known’ people to get truly wretched fungal infections from unsanitary pools. That’s why paint and chlorine sounds good to me.

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