Yesterday, we arrived in Lautoka in the late morning and everyone had a different agenda. Mom and Alyssa were determined to get all of the fruits, vegetables and bread we would need for the coming days at sea and Dailin, Orin and Eli were determined to stock up on fireworks which were now being sold in preparation for the upcoming Indian Diwali celebrations.
Within the next hour Kirsten & Alyssa had obtained their grocery items of peppers, tomatoes, spices, oranges, apples, pineapples (3 for $5 FJD), eggs, cilantro and more. In Fiji we found some of the best produce prices in the South Pacific or very close to the produce bargains we found in Tonga.
I joined the boys who went to the grocery store selling fireworks. I don’t know what I was thinking but I let them pick out 20 Fijian dollars ($12) worth of fireworks. It had something to do with them having earned the money by doing a morning “white glove” cleanup of the boat. Given that a Roman candle of 20 shots was only 55 cents Fijian (30 cents) they managed to acquire quite an arsenal of pyrotechnics. It wasn’t until we returned back to the boat that I realized how much they had. And now it was up to me to ensure that they would be safely lit up so as to not get caught in the wind and damage any part of our sailboat.
So far however the kids have been very good with their explosives. Many bottle rockets sneaked onboard from Washington state were safely detonated onboard as were the prized Roman candles Kirsten and I purchased as prizes for the kids in Raiatea. I just told the kids that I didn’t want to be responsible for importing fireworks to Vanuatu so they would need to use them up before we arrive on the shores to this new country on our itinerary.
Only a day later and now underway to Vanuatu, Orin kept pestering me for permission to light off his fireworks. I had to keep reminding him that we were still in Fiji and I didn’t want him firing anything off until after we exited the reef around the island. While it took us two hours to exit the reef, Orin wasted no time and asked another dozen or two times before I finally gave in and he set off one of his fireworks over the edge of the boat. It was however only enough to get him excited for the darkness of the evening.
Shortly after dark, Orin asked if I was ready for his teaser of a fireworks show. He was going to light off a few of his prized possessions. The first was his thirty cent twenty shot Roman candles. He pointed it downwind and even Zakary was calmed down for the show. Soon however the kids kept asking for more and more of a show, so more and more fireworks were added. At the end of the evening about 10 fireworks were lit with many more to go. I sometimes wonder if the kids will ever get lighting fireworks out of their system or if it just gets them more and more excited to explode more.