The results...

...of me waiting on the phone for United Airlines. Forever.

And why was I on the phone with them? It appears this island has grown too small for me. In a months time, a new destination I shall find.This will no longer be sandy-feat. It will be urban-spanish-speaking-feet. Look out Argentina.

...more as the story unfolds.


Send Me Presents!

Here's my address, for all those dying to send me letters.

Kait McNally
c/o Oceanic Communications
P.O. Box 18391
Suva, Fiji




Clarence doing an impression of why Sean Kingston was late getting on stage. "Where are my freakin bagels?"... I'm sorry sir, if you forgot, you are in Fiji. What's a bagel?

Ronna at a Fijian radio station, singing a song for Clarence's indie/rock show Something Different

More Radio

A good night.

Post-Albie's going away party- Me, Ronna, Rejie, Albie, and Mikey at Traps.


Just Do It...

Did you know that some of us American expats still consider ourselves American? That's right folks, we do. And the upcoming election might be talked about more in Fiji and across the globe than it is in your own living room. Americas strengths and weaknesses spread across the world, and our decisions affect not only how our tax money is spent, but also pulses through oceans to our neighbors. Jon thought a great way to encourage out-of-america voting would be to start thefirstvote.com, a video log of expatriates casting their absentee vote for the 2008 presidential elections. Though we haven't put too much effort into it going viral, this is a start. Check it out at thefirstvote.com

Design related, Ronna showed me this [o]BOMB[a] site:Design For Obama. It's awesome to see how involved designers are getting in this election-- a great outlet to get artists and their audiences thinking. Here are a few of my favorite designs:

My absentee ballot is also in the mail, and it was a daunting task to take on. SO, for all of you that are in America, take that simple step and freakin' VOTE.

Big Kids.

I’ve been building up to this for some time now. American culture encourages diligent school-attending from age 5, building up the skills needed for that fated day when one begins his or her real life, nine to five, daily grind Big Kid Job. I learned the basics in elementary school, starting with the names of colors, staying within the lines, etc. My parents can attest that in Middle school, I learned how to stay out of the lines. High school, under the thoughtful guidance of my art teacher/friend/mentor (whilst she acted under her own, more “natural” influence), I was able to define and refine my personal tastes. College taught me the most—I honed my doodling skills in the jejune lecture halls of Art History 1 and 2, learned how to bullshit any object imaginable into a “noteworthy” and “exceptional” A+ artistic expression, and above all else I learned how to shamelessly self-promote.

My dad always told me to figure out what I love, and find a way to make a living doing it—this advice has come a long way… 5,620 miles if you want to be specific. After the 18 years of hastily waking up, audaciously sucking up, and excitedly shaking things up at school, I finally packed up my things and headed into the Real World. Now you might argue that living in Fiji is in no way the “real world,” but like I said in my earlier entry, I assure you it is. My short stay in Suva has taught me a lot about the similarities between here and there (and quite possibly, anywhere). I spent the day exercising my graphic-designing abilities in Flash, Photoshop, and Illustrator like many of you have seen me do for a number of years, but today was different: I got paid for it. I know, I know… to all you that have already been down this beaten path, I acknowledge that it’s only my second week at work, and I’m surrrreeeee a lot of things lose their spice after a while… but I will assert that I honestly love this environment, the ability to create, inspire, be inspired, and produce things that are stimulating and ‘cool.’ I’ve found something I love to do, and have found a way to make a living doing it. [virtual pat on the back to Denny McNally]

Unfortunately Fiji is on the conservative side of the ‘imagination line.’ When my boss, Jon, first explained that Fiji is more interested in a cheap product than a quality one, I was discouraged. How could I explore my creative direction while working in the confines of a blind community? After a few days of consideration, thought, and personal pep-talks, I realized that maybe my presence can help push design in Fiji closer to the edge. Even if it’s just the tiniest bit, it will be an accomplishment to blog about.

Last week I worked on some mock-up Flash banners for a local cell-phone company, and have helped make some classy ice cream ads. I’ve also started laying out a few websites, which I’ll be sure to include here as they evolve. I had a glamour-shot photo shoot with some coffee beans, which are here for you to feast your eyes upon! This week will be spent finalizing a few designs. Along with my Big Kid Job here, I’ve been doing some Big Kid work back home. I’m working with the guys from Galvanic, putting together the 2009 Campus Rail Jam Tour. I’m finalizing our first print ad tonight, which will hit newsstands in one of the biggest snowboarding magazines in America! I’m excited to get my work in such a noteworthy location… keep an eye out next month. Galvanic’s reign has already started this year with a homecoming Rail Jam at CSU last week, lead by Tour Manager and one of my best friends, Taylor. Check out the story, written by my Big Kid friend Jess (now working for Freeskier Magazine). Another awesome position is held by mr. Sam Campbell, who flew to Argentina on a whim and has landed a job as a Party Photographer for music/art website What's Up Buenos Aires. Big props to them and their Big Kid Jobness as well! As much as we complain, I’ll admit we all have kick-ass jobs.

[Here's Sam with his first published photo in Wipe magazine!]

Next Monday, my long-time friend Adam is coming out here from Oregon. With two weeks off and my first paycheck in the bank, I’m looking forward to some outer-island adventuring with the best partner in crime I can imagine. There are many things that make me homesick, and sometimes I feel really alone. But I’m learning to use this time of detachment to do the things I run out of time for at home. Some items from the list are: learn to draw people, make a radical blog, learn a hundred vocab words that make me sound more eloquent, and get really tan. I also want to learn how to play squash, cook, and teach Fiji how to dance. My performance at the clubs this weekend allows me to check off the dance one…


That's me and Mikey, discovering Fiji in the triassic period.




Thanks to a hot tip, I've found them on this vast island! Nothing like a good ol' New York bagel straight from New Zealand.

Surviving the Tropics

Living anywhere that isn’t home can be a bit scary at times. Luckily for me, the things I have to look out for above all else is the inexplicable bus fires and the feared bite of the Dengue carrying mosquito. Just today I found out that one of my more recently acquired friend is suffering from the latter. But those fears are getting lost in the sea of opportunity vastly surrounding the island that is Me.

I knock on wood about 10 times a day as I relate the good fortune I’ve been continuously stumbling across since setting down in Suva. Now surviving an entire week sans-darcy, I’m proud to say I’m getting the hang of flying solo.

The weekend was chock full of outings. Thursday Ronna convinced me to take a hula class with her at the University, so with my game face on I made a complete idiot of myselfa trying to shake my hips as the Polynesians do. But with the encouragement and laughter of my colleagues, I slowly got the hang of it. I guess if graphic design fails I can always make a living working at a Hawaiian resort telling well-paying guests what not to do.

Still recovering from the hilarity of my hula, Ronna and I went downtown to attend a Women of Power poetry reading, much evocative of Eugene. Ronna both recited a few personal pieces and played a song. Once the feminist crowd dispersed, it became a late-night dance party where once again, my dance moves were encouraged and ridiculed. Apparently people don’t know raw talent when they see them (for those of you that haven’t had the pleasure of seeing me dance recently, think a drunk zombie/Frankenstein that is being pulled by marionette stings.) The night was capped with roadside BBQ—reminding me that I made the right choice in shedding my vegetarian-ness upon entering the country.

Friday I was invited to a meeting for FAWG, the Fiji Association of Women Graduates, which seems like a cool organization for educated women to get together and put on events and programs for the community. I think I’ll get more involved in that in the coming months, as it sounds like a fun outreach as well as a great way to meet other people. After the meetings we headed to USP for a peace concert, which hosted a number of amazing local artists. It’s refreshing seeing how much young talent there is in this city!

I also met with Jon, the CEO of the advertising company I was interested in working at. Though I’m without work visa, we’ve worked out a way of appeasing the government and at the same time allowing me time off when the mood strikes. I start in the office on Monday, and my first assignment is creating the website for Bulaccino, which happens to be my favorite coffee joint in the country! I’ll keep you updated with the progress of that. I’ll also be doing a site for Clean Up Fiji, an organization created to help keep Fiji beautiful. Though a very conservative place in terms of creativity, I think this will be a great opportunity to get the feel of working at a real office.

Last night Angie took me to my first wine tasting! In a room where I’m convinced every expat in Fiji was gathered, we raised our glasses over and over again and thanked our lucky stars that we all ended up on this island. Tonight, with the launch of Digicel—a new cell phone company—there’s a Shawn Kingston concert in the city park, said to be the biggest musical extravaganza Fiji has ever seen. I’ve been lead to believe that Shawn Kingston is one of the 10 crap-rap artists that have made it to Fiji, and am happy to report after relentless exposure, I’m pretty sure I can sing every one of his songs by heart. Sadly, his music sucks.

I think I’m starting to make friends, and am getting into the swing of living here. We’re planning a huge Halloween party at my request, which is discussed almost daily. It’s only late at night after the activities have all died down and I have time to reflect that I start getting homesick, but skype and email have been a big help with that (hooray technology!). October brings exciting things, including Diwali (indian christmas type celebration) and Fiji's independence day- so look forward to more exciting times in upcoming entries!