I don't know if people are really more friendly here or if they just have a better greeting word. Nothing quite like BOOOOOLA from a smiling 6'4 300 pound fellow to make you feel welcomed. Not only is there greeting colorful for those of us used to what's up and hi, but man, do they know how to use colors. The buses here are are these vibrant numbers. Outside they're yellow and white, with green tarps to cover the window areas in case of rain (and these do get quite a bit of use), but inside it's almost better. Red, I mean stand up and smack you red vinyl everywhere. It makes for quite the scene.
My first day wasn't all success here but one thing I can happily report went well was dinner. So on my three trips to the bus station today, only took the bus once, I kept walking by a fine looking curry establishment. Fiji has a strong Indian influence and in Lautoka it's especially strong. From the buses and taxis to electronics stores, you're in fact likely to cross an Fiji-Indian walking down the street. When dinner time came around I did not hesitate to go try out the curry, and I was not dissapointed. Lamb curry, soup, and a huge plate of rice and two sides. The soup was stewy and warming. The lamb curry was delicately spread over the rice and then one of the sides was eaten. A vegatable sort of thing, quite good. Then the other side was tried, just a nible to know what was on my plate. It was a mint looking substance with the consistency of apple sauce and had an unremarkable taste. Something to cleanse the palate at the end of the meal I noted. I scarfed down the rice and lamb curry and while it didn't not have the look of curry it definately had the bite and excellent taste. It was spicy, but in a soul warming way. Having cleaned my plate minus the mint/apple sauce, I was pleased. I proceeded to take a large scoop of the sauce to neutrilize the spicyness. However, it came to my attention as I began to sweat even more profusely and tear up a little that someone, perhaps even a whole battalion, had replaced that mind mannered side, with something not so mild mannered. I walked back to my room sweating, sinuses clean, and full.