Friday, October 11, 2013

Colours of Fiji

11 October 2013

ALL kinds of gorgeous colours in Fiji, and especially in Suva!

First, there's the money - all bright and colourful!  And yes, most countries other than the USA have multi-coloured money.  But here in the South Pacific, money is somehow brighter and cheerier.  And notice Queen Elizabeth on the $50 bill - she's being phased out, and replaced by indigenous animals.  Sometimes we get bills with the Queen, sometimes a bird or parrot or fish or creepy insect.  (Yeah, I can live without money with insects on it.)

Then there are the park benches, or more accurately the benches on the sidewalk.  This is along Victoria Parade, in the vicinity of the United Nations Park.  (I know, even the names of the streets are interesting.)  And notice, in the photo with the young guys on the bench, there's a streetlight in the background to the right - the shape of the light matches the shape of the bench back.  Just one of those little unifying design elements that city planners add, that art people notice.

Our bank is affliated with Westpac, so that's where we bank in this part of the world.  They had a great sign celebrating Fiji Day (Fiji Independence Day), with a wonderful picture of the flag.

And this has got to be one of the coolest flags I've seen.  Looks like a fairly normal flag, right?  Nope, it isn't.

Okay, yesterday I mentioned the flag of Great Britain, because Fiji is a former British colony.  But I was curious about the crest, in the opposite lower corner.

This is the crest of Fiji.  In other contexts, the crest is flanked by two Fijian warriors, in sulus (sarongs) and holding traditional weapons.  On the flag, the warriors are missing.

On the top of the crest is a lion, presumably related to the British royal crest, because Fiji has never had lions.  But THIS lion is holding a cocoa pod!  Cocoa!!!  Chocolate!!!  Yes, cocoa grows on Fiji, although it isn't a huge crop any more.  But CHOCOLATE!  What country do you know has CHOCOLATE on their flag?  Isn't that wonderful???  I love this part of the flag!!!!

The rest of the crest shows other major products of Fiji - sugarcane in the upper left, coconut palm in the upper right, bananas below the palm tree, and a dove of peace in the lower left.

So of course I see sugar to sweeten the chocolate, coconut covered in chocolate, and maybe chocolate covered bananas, or bananas to dip into chocolate fondue, or banana cake with chocolate chips........the possibilities are numerous.

And of course, all that chocolate promotes world peace, because who isn't happy when they're eating chocolate?

Isn't that a brilliant crest????

 We noticed this building being decorated in red bunting, with red flower arrangements - I asked the people doing the set-up, and was told that today is the send-off for Poppy Day.  The woman explained that this is Remembrance Day, for veterans - and actually it's "this Friday" (that's what she said, but since today is Friday, I think she meant next Friday) and today was the opening program.  I just liked this bandstand in the park all decked out in red.

And, since this is October, there's a campaign for breast cancer awareness - pink abounds!  (I love pink!  Vastly under-rated colour!)  The place we went to for lunch had mini-cupcakes - the options were either white cupcake with pink frosting, or pink cupcake with white frosting.  I opted for the latter.  Which looked lovely on a deep periwinkle plate.  (Isn't this a great presentation?  We're talking a tiny cupcake that could be eaten in one bite, although I managed to make it last for four bites.  But the folded napkin, the blue contrasting with the pink but matching one sprinkle - just a great still life!)

Okay, last photo - not especially colourful, but this is just such a cool tree!  It had long exterior roots or something hanging down all over it, so that it looked like, oh, maybe dreadlocks all over the tree.  Or, maybe this is an Ent.  Definitely looked like an old man tree.  Couldn't you see Gandalf's face superimposed over this tree?

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