Hello from Nadi, Fiji

Hello from Nadi, Fiji

Blog started:  Saturday evening   April 27, 2013   (First travelogue of this trip).
Blog posted :  Monday morning April 29, 2013 (Fiji time)

I am starting this blog in the Los Angeles Airport.  This morning we flew from Denver and arrived at about 2:30 LA time.  We then had to get our luggage and transfer to the International terminal.  We had to kill a lot of time, as the check-in counter did not open until 6:35.  Our flight to Fiji leaves at 11:30.

As has been the case in several previous occasions, Stampin’ Up!  is paying for the trip.  As some of you know, Pat has earned several trips over the years.  We have been on eight cruises and this will be our second resort stay.  The demonstrators have to work very hard for these trips, but what trips they are!!!

It has been an interesting couple of days getting ready for the trip.  One of the items that cropped up at the last minute – I discovered my dive computer/watch batteries were dead.  Normally the watch has to be returned to the manufacturer to get serviced (no time for that!!!).  I did a search and found that, with a special tool, you can replace the battery.  I found an Ebay ad for the tool and battery (plus new O-ring) for a very reasonable fee.  The seller is located in the LA area.  After a bunch of communication, I arranged to buy the tool, battery, and O-ring and have a courier deliver it to the airport.  The kit was cheap, but the courier was not {frown}.  In any case, I have everything to get the dive computer/watch running again.  I really wanted to have it for the dives I plan to do.  It does a wonderful job of documenting the dive.

Fortunately, travel to Fiji does not require significant medical preparation.  Your Tetanus shots need to be  current, have current hepatitis A protection and we needed to get typhoid protection.  In my case, I could take oral typhoid vaccine, but Pat had to have a shot, since the oral has live virus and she can not have that with her compromised immune system.  

OK, now I can update this blog, as we are in our hotel room in Fiji.  We are at Sofitel Fiji Resort and Spa (map).  I will post a couple of quick pictures that give a hint of how beautiful this place is and will follow up in later posts.

Jim and Pat with pool area in the background
(sorry about picture quality)

Our room with ocean in background

We departed LAX at about 11:30 PM on Saturday and arrived in Nadi at 5:10 AM on Monday.  While a quick glace would say that that is a hell of a long flight, or that Jim screwed up again, it really reflects that we crossed the date line and are one day ahead of the USA.  So, I guess you could say we missed Sunday this week.  I texted the girls and said that it was 6:30 AM on Monday in Fiji and 12:30 PM on Sunday in Denver – to give you a better understanding of the time relationship.

The flight was just a bit short of 11 hours.  Almost every seat was full and we had three people crammed together in our row.  That is the makings for a miserable trip – well, not when you have chemistry on your side.  Our doctor prescribed a sleep medication for the trip – generic Ambien.  It did the trick and we slept pretty well.  Sure made the trip bearable.

A couple of the grandsons wanted to know about the planes we took.  The Denver to LAX was a 737-800.  The LAX to Nadi was a 747-400.  I have always loved the 747 planes.  Gates had a project to develop a V-belt conveyor system for the cargo containers.  I made several trips to California to work on the design and testing of the system.  Then I made a trip to Chicago for one of the first commercial flights of that great plane.  When I saw it coming in, I was convinced it was crashing.  The plane is so big that it looks like it is going too slow to fly.  Over the years, I have taken many 747 flights and it is the smoothest flying plane I have been on.  I have been saddened that most of the airlines are phasing them out.  Imagine how delighted I was to fly one again.

Our 747-400 plane from LAX to NADI

That is all for now.

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