Samoa Fatigue

So I went to the Chinese embassy today and spoke to an official about my trip. She explained that I’d probably only get a visa good for three months and two entries at most. Because I don’t know the exact date of when I’ll be entring China, I will just get the visa when I’m closer. I’ll also provide a lot more documentation about where I will be going.

This was the first time I’ve had to apply for a visa, so it was educational. I think I’ll take the route of information overload in the future so there are no problems about what I’ll be doing.

I also made a travel agent very happy. I explain what I was planning on doing and the tickets I needed booked to Melonesia. I think she was happy.

It is looking like I will have to go through Hawaii again. I’ll make the best of it and send some stuff back home while I’m there.

My last two days in Samoa I’ll be at Auggie Grey’s Hotel. It’s the classic place to stay here. My current place is booked so I figure I should go there and take advantage of the hot water.

If the rest of my trip goes as slow as it has been the last few weeks, I’ll die of old age before I’m done.

I’ve settled on two major obectives in Vanuatu and the Solomons. In the Solomons I’ll be visiting Rennell Island. It’s the only World Heritage site in the Pacific and largest raised atoll in the world. It also has the largest chunk of bird diversity of any pacfic island. In Vanuatu, I’ll be visiting Mount Yasur…an active volcano.

Vanuatu and the Solomons have so many islands that I had to narrow down what I wanted to do. I also wanted to pick up the pace a bit. I’m I’m lucky, maybe I’ll meet some people in a cargo cult :)

Every Time I Try To Get Away, They Keep Pulling Me Back In

It is as if I can’t escape Samoa.

I’m now stuck here till Saturday because of flights to Fiji. I will have spent more time in Samoa than New Zealand. That doesn’t seem right.

Travling in the Pacific is really slow. I’m going to need to pick up the pace and maybe cut down the time I spend in some places. I really wanted to spend some time in Nauru, but given the flight schedules, my choices seem to be one week or one hour on a stop over. As much as I want to visit Nauru, a week there really seems over kill.

I’m starting to get worried about my ability to get to China and avoid the winter. I’d like to be out of the Pacific by the end of August. Even if I finish in the Pacific by August, it might be too late if I also go through Japan and South Korea. I could just say “screw it” and reverse my route and go north through asia and try to make China by the spring.

There was a miscommunication at the Chinese embassy and I ended up having to get my vias on a rush, else they had to have my passport for five days. I’m getting a one year multi-entry visa, so I should be fine.

I also am doing better than expected on my finances, so that’s good. Three days in Tonga with food, internet, drinks, and lodging was $120. Not bad.