A Most Memorable Fijian Christmas

How do you fancy being woken on Christmas morning with a slice of Christmas cake, brought to you by the maid? All right, it was only 7.20 a.m. and our thanks may have been somewhat muted, but the sun was shining, the temperature outside was already over 20 degrees and we happily drifted back to sleep. I believe carol singers came round at 8 but we never heard them.

We were in Fiji, stopping off for a three day Christmas break on our way back from exploring New Zealand, and loving every minute of it.

On Christmas Eve we’d been entertained by a Fijian steel band, a fire dancing ceremony, and a group of school children singing I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas, which somehow seemed unlikely.


We spent Christmas Day relaxing by the pool and walking on the white sandy beach, gazing out at an impossibly blue Pacific ocean. After exchanging our gifts over a glass of wine in our burra, (a classy sort of cabin set right on the beach), we put on our best togs and went into dinner.

The choice of food was mind boggling, meant to cater for every nationality or taste. Here we enjoying the champers while waiting to be served.

But the highlight of the evening was a rendition of Grease put on by the staff. I’ve never seen anything so funny. They entered into the spirit of it wonderfully, miming the words, and singing and dancing with great gusto. Sandra’s blond wig atop a beautiful black face struck a delightfully incongruous note. And the young male waiters who did the car scene were seriously gorgeous! They really hammed it up wonderfully. Great fun!

Next came a fire dance, and after that, the disco,


Then we went to ring our daughter back home in the UK. We couldn’t get through but were more successful on Boxing Day morning. ‘Happy Birthday,’ I said, since that’s what it was. ‘Oh, is it tomorrow there,’ she said, delighted we’d rung. ‘It’s still today here.’

It’s a strange feeling to have crossed the date line, but a wonderful Christmas escape.

This year we’re off on a Caribbean cruise. I’ll tell you all about that when I get back.