03 December 2010


I haven't had the chance in the last few years to properly announce my homecoming. But I am back in the States, just so you all know.

18 May 2008

PC/Fiji Medical Kit

For new trainees, I thought it might be helpful to know exactly what the medical kit you are given contains. It covers all the basic, plus some. So don't waste precious packing space on redundant health needs.

The PC/Fiji Medical Kit contains:

Pain killers: UnAspirin, Acetaminophen, Tylenol, Ibuprofen
Antiobiotics: Flucloxacillin, Amoxicillin, Erythromycin, Fasigyn
PeptoBismol and Antacids
Cough Drops and Sepasoothe Lozenges
Electropl (for heat stress)
Aquatabs (water purification tabs)
Hydrocortisone Cream
Bacitracin Antibacterial Cream
Clotrimazole cream (for fungal infections)
Sunscreen Lotion
Insect Repellant
Emergency Eye Wash
Lipbalm with sunscreen
TempaDot (external thermometer)
Medical Tape
Butterfly Tape
Dental Floss
Plastic Tweezers

Things I'd recommend to bring in addition:

A digital thermometer
Tweezers, metal with a very keen edge
Emergency dental repair kit (the kind at CVS)

11 April 2008

On Vacation: April 12 - April 27

The Short

I will not be around to check my email/journal/wall for the next two weeks from April 12 - April 27. If you need to get a hold of me call my cell but it had better be important.

The Long

I have amazing friends. I have four wonderful people in my life who are willing... no, eager to truck their bottoms a world away to Fiji to come to vacation and to visit me. It goes without saying that I am horribly excited to have the chance to share my life here with my friends.

We have some loosely woven plans for our time here. The rough itinerary includes scuba diving, hiking, relaxing on tropical beaches, wind sailing, 'horse boarding', visiting various local sites, and hopefully getting a taste of real life in Fiji. I am nothing short of giddy - I have needed this leave for weeks now and its so nice to finally be at that moment.

See you all in two weeks with a hard drive full of photos.

03 April 2008

A Few Thoughts On Culture

Culture is not a style of music or a particular dance step. It is not a single craft based on generations of artistic tradition.

Culture is much more elusive. It is the assumptions we make about the world around us. It is the unspoken interpretation of events. It is no more and no less than our entire personal perspective on reality.

Culture cannot be sifted like rice, separating one aspect from another with enough effort. We are each a fusion of innumerable influences, unique unto ourselves. Each person encountered is a singular manifestation of culture, a phenomenon impossible to replicate.

02 April 2008

Donations for the Senior Citizens Centre

As most of you who read this know, I am working in Fiji at Senior Center as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Currently, the Centre is struggling to get by and while thinking of potential solutions, it occurred to me how much excess we have at home in the US... often small things that are prohibitively expensive here. So with several of my friends coming in three weeks for a visit, I thought I would invite those back home to support my work here and directly aid a community of disadvantaged elders in a developing nation.

Here's what I am asking for: Consider the following list and see if you can offer to donate any of the following items. If you can, please comment below on the post so that there are no duplicate gifts. My mother has offered her house in Worcester as a shipping/dropping off point, where the gifts will be collected by those coming to visit and then delivered directly to the seniors here in Ba.

For practicality purposes, items should be small and lightweight. If you can think of something useful that is not on the list, please just send me an email. For those of you who would like to offer a monetary donation, I am currently working on establishing a PayPal account for the centre, which should be in place by the end of the week.

For details, shipping or otherwise, please email me - raedochartaigh at gmail dot com

I would like to have all donations in Worcester by April 5th.

Please make sure to list your donation in the comments, i.e. which video you have donated. If you wish to you can do so anonymously.

The List

  • Diabetes Testing Strips (Unlimited)
  • Diabetes Testing Machine (1)
  • Portable DVD Player (1)
  • Secondhand PC Laptops (2)
  • Ink Cartridges for a Canon iP1000 - Color and Black (Unlimited)
  • DVDs for Golden Oldies Ex: Exercise Video (Unlimited)
  • Lightweight Arts and Craft Supplies
  • Appropriate Health Posters & Pamphlets
  • Simple Crafting Manuals Ex: Watercolors and Brushes

The Details of the Center

Their Website

The Senior Citizens Ba Community Centre (SCBCC) is a not-for-profit, non-government organization registered in 2005 under Fiji's Charitable Trust Act. The SCBCC works to support the elderly of Ba by providing access to health services, education, social gatherings, and financial opportunities. It seeks to raise awareness within the community regarding elder issues and a senior's right to independence, participation, care, self-fulfillment and dignity.

In striving to fulfill this mission, the SCBCC offers a variety programs and services to the local senior community. Current programs include: Weekly enrichment activities, monthly health clinics, health & lifestyle education, outreach & home visitation, social events and referral & advocacy.

At the moment, we are developing some new and needed programs to better serve our seniors. These programs include stroke awareness & management, education on aging for the families of seniors, basic technology training, and opportunities for income generating projects.

21 March 2008

Photos: Home Sweet Home

This is a collection of photos from around my house. Nothing special, just a glimpse into the visual life of me in Ba,Fiji. Enjoy.

17 March 2008

Photos: A Friend's Wedding

This album is from my friend and counterpart, Sunita's wedding earlier this week. There are two components to a typical Indo-Fijian marriage here. The first is the legal ceremony. This is the occasion where close friends and family gather to witness the signing of the paperwork and often have a small lunch afterwards. This is what this album contains. What I did not get the chance to capture was the more religious ceremony, which took place yesterday. But really I was too busy dishing out curry and puri to run around with my camera anyways.

04 March 2008

A Moment in the Life

I have taken to walking to town to get to my afternoon/evening aerobics classes. It serves as a bit of a warmup.

Well, today as I was walking along the major highway of Fiji, a farmer was walking opposite me with his cow trailing behind on a lead. We met on the sidewalk of the bridge and easily passed one another, his cow behaving herself. And then it occured to me that this is the sort of thing that I don't bat an eyelash at anymore. But it was a moment.

Oh and my dance teacher/friend has convinced me to paint my toenails. I feel girly, though the only reason I am doing it is because it looks more professional. My feet are usually (mostly) clean as I can get them, but my nails.. even with a scrub brush never look good. Now all you can see is shiny light taupe. I'm looking at them, but they don't look like my feet.

03 March 2008

Blog Updates: New Feed and Photos

So I finally got around to organizing my photos and establishing a feed for the Senior Centre's news blog.

Both the new photo album links and the news feed are located on the sidebar. Please do check them out.
And I promise more photos soon... perhaps even ones where I have hair!

24 February 2008

Typical Music in Fiji

This is fairly typical music in Fiji. I thought I might give everyone abroad a little taste of my musical landscape here. This is a very popular song.