Life Solomon Islands

Lukim iu Bihaen

January 3, 2020

Dear Solomon Islands

We’ll never forget you, but we have to move on.

It wasn’t you, it was us. 

Actually, no, it was you. 

Why did you have to be so bloody hot and dusty all the time. Like, ALL the time unless it was rainy season when the floodgates opened.

Barrels and banana trees floating down the main road. Taxis stuck in potholes sem size lo swimming pool. 

Powercuts and watercuts every month. Came hand-in-hand with bucket showers at the water tank with the mosquitos and frogs. 

Outside at dusk, hoping not to get malaria. Popping malarials every day… (suuuuuure).

Rubbish. Everywhere. Expats getting their knickers in a twist.

Your roads are terrible. Our first car was a survivor! A record of three jumpstarts in a 1 km stretch of road.

There was the mechanic who stole our car for a month. And the one that racked up 100km and a flat tyre on the job.

Banana boat rides. Running out of petrol. Not enough life jackets. Scarier when stuck in a storm. 

Mould destroyed the leather shoes we stupidly packed. The fresh termite dust on our clothes every morning. No wonder the floor was giving up. Hoping the roof didn’t give out first.

Tenacious ants like no tupperware had ever seen. The only safe haven: the refrigerator. Wished our house was a refrigerator.   

Crocs. Real ones and the potential ones. Snorkelling was an extreme sport: 50% snorkelling, 50% croc watch.

Also, you need to let go of the G’day sausages. They are not good. Trust us on this.

We could go on and on and on… but the straw that broke the camel’s back?

Palmboom. Just, disgusting.

We’ll admit, some of it was us. But mostly Australia because they were taking too long to lay down that internet cable (Honestly, d’you know how hard it is to blog on your connection even when it’s not cloudy??!).

Ok, ok, the real reason: Nid got a new jobby that was too good to pass up. 

A pretty good one in New Caledonia. 

There are a lot of French people in New Caledonia, and Melanesians too. New Caledonia has a lot more cheese and bread. Cheese that comes in wheels as big as your head. And fancy bread that is so crunchy-fancy you can hear it crunched from the room over. 

But the milk is still the same (not fresh). Coffee is nothing to blog about. You wouldn’t believe it but they also have coconuts here. Yours are much better though and so are your pineapples. 

Life is pleasant in New Caledonia. 

But, Dear Solomons, we will always cherish what we had together. 

We learnt how to dive. B1, B2, B3, B17. How to crack a coconut. Storistori, chilli tuna, turtles, dugongs.

Eggplants, bus rides (tss tss), AMTRAKS, bananas, banana-dick jokes, mango season and an acknowledgement ceremony in the village.

Nid ran over 5 km at least three times. And he was in the newspaper for doing sport! Dan was in the newspaper too. She got to cut a ribbon.

The Juggernaut, Solo icon, HASH, SIPPA, Triclub, book club, Kapahaka club, movie club, all the clubs, and handmade sanitary pads.

And, all the mean bombs we did.

You attract a whole bunch of diverse and interesting people. Some of them are some of the coolest people we’ve ever met and we want to stay friends with your cool friends if that’s cool.

We’re still getting over you and probably won’t ever be completely over you. We’ll admit that it took us a few months to unsubscribe from the Friends in Solo email list. We wear our HASH singlets with pride (nobody recognises them) and we still stalk the Friends in Solo Facebook page from time to time to see if anyone has finally found any strawberries at the market. Expats in Honiara are particularly resilient.

We tell our friends all about you, but with a few provisions. 

We’re sorry we didn’t finish all the things we meant to. 

We tried our best, and hope we did something good.

At least the Malaitans have sriracha now.

Bai Solomon Aelans. Distaem, mitufala raitim lo life lo New Caledonia. 

Thank you to our readers. We hope you enjoyed the info we had to offer and reading about our experiences in the Solomon Islands. Life lo Solo hem hard tumas (and we don’t mean for us short stayers).

We loved our time in Solo and wish we wrote more but there was just not enough time to write between all the jumpstarts and tyre changing we had to do. 

We’ll be (finally) writing about our New Caledonia experiences in the New Year if you want to stay tuned. 

But for Solo, hem nomoa. Lukim iu bihaen nara day. 

Dan and Nid go finis

Ps: If you see Juggernaut cruising the streets, tell the owner what a jacked car he has.