I like to write the stories of the not-so-fabulous every now and again because I guess many of you experience a sense of schadenfreude that paradise has it’s downside sometimes too… You sick puppies.
BUT: between swanning around the islands, drinking in gorgeous corals and sipping pina coladas, the mundane and irritating hits us too. This weekend in Nadi I lost our wallet.
Stoffel and I no longer carry separate wallets and (until recently) I have been nominated keeper of the cash. And the bank cards (both SA credit card and UK atm card). And a variety of cards that identify me (it’s nice to have a full set of spares) as a driver, skipper, radio operator, first aider etcetera etcetera. At some stage on Saturday, between visiting the curio market and the chemist and the supermarket to do a stock up now that our hungry guests have left us (thanks Dave and Rejane!) and the taxi back to Port Denerau and the boat on a mooring in Port Denerau, my brightly covered Mexican-woven money pouch slipped through my fingers.
We discovered the loss after sitting on Taks and chatting to Dave&Rejane on their last evening for about an hour. After some serious searching on Takalani, we kicked into action. We phoned, we retraced our steps, we even defied the odds and found the taxi who had driven us home with the shopping and scoured his vehicle. Everywhere we were met with helpful and sympathetic Fijians, but no wallet. Although we had just drawn a not-insubstantial amount of cash, we (as one is in cases like this) were more worried about the admin involved in trying to replace the missing cards.
Finally we resigned ourselves to the inevitable. We took the same taxi back to the marina to call the banks and cancel the cards: the driver avowing that if he had found the wallet he would have dropped it off in Port Denerau… but not without first removing the cash and taking a week long holiday!
We have some very cute boat cards (see here)
which I carry around in case we meet anyone with whom we’d like to stay in touch. The cards list the blog site and our e-mail address. On Monday afternoon I opened our inbox to find a number of URGENT e-mails from a chain of superettes:* they had something of great value that belonged to me! The wallet might have found it’s way to the store in the marina? Or maybe I left it there?
I walked into the store and was recognised almost immediately as the girl from the missing wallet. After smiles all round I was re-united with the missing purse. It contained every single missing card. However, all but Fijian $4,50 had been carefully removed.
I kind of hope someone has taken a week long holiday.
*They are called “Ye’es”. Which always makes me smile because I’ve been accused by foreign friends (who notice these things) of placing more than one syllable into my “yes”es.