Up and at ‘em everyone! Today’s the big day! Team Roz is on the move…
Saturday was a fantastically busy day. I raced around getting clothes and gear packed for Roz and myself, and spent lots of time on the internet and on the phone, tying up last minute details. New contacts and very helpful information from Tarawa continued to trickle in about clothing requirements, accommodations, phone service, and immigration. As the updates came in, I forwarded it all on to the other members of Team Roz so we could accommodate accordingly. Finally, I packed up the Yellin’s studio where I’ve been staying since Roz and I arrived in February.
I was all ready to go, but…did I mention that my car chose this week of all weeks to explode? Well, it did. Billowing smoke on the highway, followed by a powerful explosion and my little Corolla’s pathetic end. But I digress. This inconvenient turn of events only meant that I was marooned on the North Shore without a ride into Honolulu. It’s about an hour away. I finally managed to convince two lovely friends to give up a prime Saturday night and schlep me into town – hooray!
At Hunter and Traci’s house, we opened up our cases, spread everything out and downsized in a big way. I ended up leaving half the clothes and half the dried nuts and granola bars behind. We exchanged emergency contact details, scanned our passports and booked our hotel in Nandi, Fiji, where we’ll arrive at about 1 pm on Monday, September 1st. Whew! We said our goodnights and set alarms for 5 am. After a much needed shower, I popped open the laptop, ready to type up the day’s blog, but I couldn’t get on the password-protected wireless network. Everyone had gone to bed exhausted and I just didn’t have the heart to be a pest. My apologies to all of you for not getting a blog posted on time!
That brings us to today. Check in at the airport went perfectly and we’re now waiting, bleary-eyed but excited, at the Air Pacific gate. Some new information came in overnight from our new friend Linda in Tarawa: apparently we may actually need visas. Yikes. According to the information we found on the state department website, visas aren’t required, but Linda says she’s seen Americans get sent back on the very same plane on which they arrived. Ugh. I’m really hoping we get lucky…in any case, we’ve scanned all of our passports and emailed them on to Linda. She’s very graciously offered to take these to immigration for us straight away and get the process started. She and her husband John have even offered to pick us up from the airport in Tarawa! We are so grateful for their help.
They’re getting ready to board, so I’d better get this posted. I’ll write more on the plane…that is, if I don’t pass out from exhaustion within five minutes of boarding!
Aloha from Honolulu – we’ll update you again once we get to Fiji.
[photo: L-R Conrad, Nicole and Hunter waiting at the gate in Honolulu, just before boarding…yes, we look SLEEPY!]
UPDATE (8/31): Just learned that we won’t need visas – whew! ;o)
Well done, Nicole, Roz is so lucky to have you on her team, especially now when a competent shore-team is essential as never before.
By the way-what do you think of Albert’s amazing plant collection?
Nicole, that is an amazing feat … posting a blog at the gate as you are boarding. BTW — this is where it gets confusing ;-D — you will arrive in Fiji at 1 PM Monday local time, or 3 PM today HST, right? So we can expect to hear how the day went from the comfort of your hotel (if you are not deported sans visas), this evening Monday night, right? Roz continues to row Sunday HST while you will zoom past into Monday (Fiji, Kiribati GMT +12) … let’s go back to the future … Have fun Nicole et amis.
Just saw Roz’s tweet rozsavage kills me 2 go so slow! but teamroz cant all get 2 tarawa until 9/9. (Team Roz note: Roz posted this 4:48pm HST)
She doesn’t know you’ll be there in a few hours?!?!
Unca Doug – the important word is “all” – two other members of the team can’t get there until the 8th. As they are traveling out specially to see her arrive, she cannot arrive before they get there!
All the updates on the RozTracker, regardless of who they come from (Nicole or Roz), will continue to be in Hawaii time (UTC-10:00). The TarawaTracker will also likely stay in Hawaii time, though I’m considering changes on that.
I am confused. Monday on my calendar is the 31st. Do you mean you will arrive Monday the 31st our time but Tuesday the 1st Tarawa time?
Thanks for clarifying, Rita. I hope “all” includes you! It may be a “slow bell” for Roz, but 09/09/09 has a nice ring. Thanks for your clarification, Evan. Good work on the epic tracker. Love the oblique zoom-out view. Margaret, I suspect Nicole meant to say they arrive Fiji today HST which is Monday Aug.31 Fiji time, and intended to continue that they will arrive in Tawara Tuesday Sept.1 after a layover in Fiji, but ran out of time before boarding and was too rushed to get the complete thought typed out correctly. Good catch. Amazing that she could post from the airport.
Whew, you have been rushed. Looking forward to further updates from Roz too. I know it’s 12 months off, but when you are heading to Australia I may be of some help. I live in Queensland, near Brisbane. I would love to help if I can.
Again let Roz know she is a hero.
I can’t imagine they would send you away when you’re there to assist someone else arriving by rowboat. Imagine if they tried to send Roz back to where she came from?
“What, no visa? Sorry, you can’t come ashore, now row straight back to Hawaii where you came from!” 🙂
I hope Roz is reading this too. If so, I want to tell you we are still rowing with you, which you can tell from rhe fast progress you are now making. Also, that love is a great spiritual force, and there is a lot directed to you…
Keep rowing hard Roz!
Roz, lots of luck and God be with you.