To market, to market
Today we hung out locally in Suva, visiting Colin's friend Greg to arrange meetings for the rest of our stay and then one of Colin's clients to see how they were doing since his last visit. We had lunch while we were there, and I got taken out the back to watch the South Indian cook make parathas and dosa. He could throw the dough until it was paper-thin!
Earlier this morning we'd stopped for a coffee at the (I thought) classically named Bulaccino: iced coffee is definitely the way to get your caffeine fix here. Purely in the name of research, and to help us in our quest to conquer-the-croissant at Kaibu, we sampled one of the local efforts - not bad we decided and we're determined to make better ones of our own once we get back to the island next week. Croissants aren't easy to make at the best of times and the island heat makes it trickier, but we're not about to be beaten by a bit of flour, yeast and butter.
After lunch we went to the markets in downtown Suva to shop for dinner and see what was available. The market is pretty huge, and held under cover at the waterfront - it was pretty dark for shooting in. We will go back on Saturday for the busiest market of the week, but it was good to get a less crowded look at it today and a sense of what I would like to shoot on Saturday.
I could spend hours in a place like this, and even today, took hundreds of photographs. With my intrepid chef cantering on ahead pointing out all the local delicacies it was a high-speed tour: while I lose all sense of time and space as I look through the lens and concentrate on the colours, angles and forms I see, Colin had incisively weighed up the 350,000 piles of papayas, duruka (sugar cane flowers), avocados, fresh bora beans, watercress, and chives. When we were ready to start lugging our purchases, he knew exactly which supplier had the best of everything we wanted to buy and shot back to each place with the accuracy of a small Hawaiian arrow.
At the entrance to the market were little paper bags of a walnut-sized fruit even Colin had never seen before. We asked what they were and were told they were called stone fruit. We asked to try one before buying, and the short story is we could see why they're called stone fruit - they're about as tasty as their namesake and unless you were seriously hungry, seemed pretty damn pointless to us.
They reminded me of the old recipe for pukeko soup - where you put your pukeko in a pot with an axe head, then fill with water and cook for a looooong time. Then you throw away the pukeko and eat the axe head...
So we passed on the stone fruit and went with the Hawaiian papaya next door to them instead: my current favourite fruit. Mmmm Mmmmm!
Finally, the day is ending with dinner, and a drink made by Greg from the best-named product I've come across lately - The Kraken, which narrowly beats out Farmboy (an ex-student of Colin's) for Best Product Title of the day.