Christmas away from home..
My insides scream NO. NO. NO. NO. NO!!!
When it comes to the holidays, I have always spent every year, all 23 years of my life (+6), where I should be – at home with my family.
The holidays only have meaning when you are around your family, friends, and those you love .
So what do you do when they are all on the otherside of the world?
Even when spending these festivities with loved ones, I am an upset idiot. I am , “that person” who avoids Christmas music, the malls, pretty much anything that has to do with the holidays. Just like my birthday, and other sentimental occasions, I just do not respond very “happy go lucky”. These days always involves tears, and days of feeling blue no matter who I am with or what I have going on. It well…….sucks! Especially when single. And when I am in a relationship during any of these days, you bet there will be small break ups and fights for no apparent reason.
I am sensitive okay??? Or what most people would call, ridiculous.
To ensure I didn’t end drunk and hanging out on the streets with homeless Santas, I pro-actively booked a ticket out of here, and to somewhere I might be able to put my mind to ease.
FIJI sounded PERFECT
Two American friends from Sydney and myself booked a week at the Radission Blu Resort Fiji. We spent our first day on the island exploring the resort and discovering out all the island had to offer, which really… wasn’t much. Located on the main island, the resort had everything that comes with a 5 star hotel, plus a side of awesome construction (Which explains why we got such a low rate). The rooms were nice, the pool was amazing, but most of all, the staff was very memorable. At least 1,300 times a day you would hear some one or another yelling, “BULA!!!”, which is a Fijian greeting meaning life. Even though all the waiters were on what they call “Fiji Time” aka taking their sweet ass time, the staff made us feel welcomed and secure during our stay. The resort was extremely family oriented, so it’s safe to say there wasn’t any available bachelors for me to sit underneath a coconut tree with..
unless their kids and wives tagged along.
Mmmm yeahh, not ideal.
We spent a day in the Fijian Jungle for our “Day of Adventure!”
We got picked up from the hotel by a guy who insisted on calling us the party van since we requested hip hop music. His response was to play”Anaconda”by Niki Manj, because of course it just screams hip hop 😉 Driving through the city countryside, the weather took a turn for the worse yet was some how still 1,222 degrees outside. Looking through my window, I saw a lot of poverty, yet I still found it so much beauty with looking at my surroundings. Small Fijian huts lined up side by side, with goats and dogs running all about.
It appeared as if goats were the new “dog”
Once we got in the jungle we got all roped up for ZIPLINING!
Minus the rain hitting our faces after each zip, it was a good time. I am quite scared of heights, but I do enjoy crapping my own pants from time to time (figuratively) to face my fears and get some thrill.
Ziplining was followed by a hike through the jungle to reach the scared waterfalls. During the entire hike we were surrounded by wild bananas, pineapples, coffee, mango – you name it, it was growing! I kept having the urge to drink a smoothie, but settled for the variety of bugs that kept flying into my mouth.
You could hear the beautiful sounds of the birds and the water streaming, but most of all you could hear the slap of my friends smacking the mosquito off there bodies. We got eaten alive. But to me it was worth it 🙂
On Christmas Eve night we eat a Delicious Fijian style buffet and watched a traditional ceremony.
This included drinking kava, the official drink of the island. Just take a sip of some dirty mop water, and that’s pretty much Kava! The only difference is that apparently if you drink enough of this dirty water, you will get dirty DRUNK🙂
I was looking forward all week to taking a picture with Santa (Shhhh no judging). But come the morning of Christmas I woke up very sick from the Fijian buffet the night before , and was in bed till noon. Probably the roughest way to start an already extremely rough day. I spent the majority of Christmas tearing up, doing everything in my power to prevent the stupid depression from kicking in . It didn’t help that we all spent the day doing nothing at the resort which left ample time for me to think about everything I was trying so hard not to think about. Also, being completely surrounded by happy families..being all, “happy family like”.. really sucked.
A glorious champagne and Oreo dinner, along with a couple of Facetimes with family, were the only things that helped bring a nice temporary relief for my home sick heart.
On our last full day we took a private charter up to a smaller island called Tivua Island. It consisted of picture perfect white sand beaches and everything else I was looking for when booking this vacation. We spent the boat ride there making friends( 2 Aussie boys, 2 Americans, 1 Canadian), and gazing out at all the beautiful smaller islands around us. The entire day was spent having fun in the sun! Day drinking, snorkelling, paddle boarding and swimming wildly in the ocean. By far one of the best days on the trip. The entire boat ride home consisted of drunk Michelle stealing babies and little children from all the locals on the boat, and dancing with them. Just like clockwork, I swear, once I am drunk hide your kids people!!! Michelle wants them!!
I think many just felt bad for me and said, “What the heck! let’s let the poor childless American woman borrow the kids for an hour..it’s Christmas for goodness sake! “
I ended our last night by going into town to a local bar that was highly recommended by all Fijians we met. This place was called Eds Bar, and it was a nice mix of locals and tourist. I spent the entire night dancing with locals and teaching them some sweet Cali moves.
Note for the wise: It seems that what I call having a dance off, Fijian women call flirting with their man, and you may or may not get punched in the chin..
Hey! At least I left with a souvenir to bring home 🙂
The night ended with taking the taxi driver through McDonalds, buying us a feast, sitting in the lobby till the wee hours of the morning, eating our Big Macs and discussing life.
News Years Eve
Well, its safe to say I hate this holiday as well, go figure! I have spent the past 3 years in bed before it even strikes midnight, and this year was no different. New Years Eve without someone you want to be with is like going out to the zoo with all the animals running wild. Every is always scrambling to find that stupid midnight kiss. I cannot think of a single New Years Eve where I actually met someone that night at bar I was willing to swap spit with, and frankly, I had no energy to even try that again this year.
Having that said, I ended up watching some fireworks with a friend and call it a night by 10pm. Grandma alert, I know!
2014 in a Nutshell
The year I decided to move to Australia (again)
The year I actually moved to Australia.
The year Ieft all I knew for everything I didn’t.
The year I learned life outside of the American bubble
The year I got hit by 2,333 cars
The year Tinder helped me realize why I have standards
The year I learned different levels of friendship
The year I discovered Tim Tams
They year I understood the pain of being homesick
The year I once again realized, life is exactly what YOU make of it.
After much thought on the year, I just want to sum it up 2014 as the year risked paid off. 2014 was a huge milestone for me because risked everything to go after what I wanted in life. I have never sacrificed so much for a decision that had absolutely no certainty, but I knew I had no choice other than to do it.
Fearing failure and rejection is something I am numb to you. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t even cross my mind 99 percent of the time when I approach that guy, try that new dance move, or submit that new proposal – no fear, I just do it. Rather than failure, it has always been the fear of not trying that will eat me alive every time. I risked everything, and succeed in making my dream come true, making 2014 one of the best I have ever lived. I have made a wonderful life for myself out here in Australia. I have a great job where I am constantly getting promoted, I have many amazing friends who will forever be a part of me, and I have travelled to places I never thought I would ever go.
To me 2014 was the year I took the biggest risk, and 2014 is year I got my biggest reward.
Some risks have put me in situations I use to wish I was never put in, but now am thankful for. Everything has made me who I am today, and this year alone has helped define me more than any other year I can remember. I have discovered more about my faults, strengths, fears, but most importantly I have learned how to be comfortable with uncertainty, especially in times when uncertainty is all I have.
It is now 2015 and what I want still remains the same.
Some love would be nice, CUPID!!
HELLOOOO!!! Are you up there smoking doobies or something??
My long time goal of getting MBA will be done in a few months, and I can finally put an end to academic career behind me. YESSSS!
Everything else is up in the air, as I am still waiting on the results of my Sponsorship. If its approved, I get continue living this life in Australia I have worked so hard to build and feel like is finally a place I can call home. If it doesn’t go through, I will have some really hard decisions to make a month down the road. Will I go to New Zealand and try the same thing there? Will I just go back home and try picking up where I left off? Will I hide on some remote beach long enough so one day my residency just gets granted? I am not sure. And I wont be sure of anything until I get that one single email from my lawyers, happening at any moment.
I am excited for the new year! Not sure how it can top 2014 but I am confident it will have something crazy up its sleeze.
After surviving this year of challenges, I know whatever comes my way that ill be okay.
Life is a roller coaster my friends, and it only goes UP!