If you were to ask a Fijian, there was one point in time that I was dating a felon. And not just a felon, but one whom I met the morning of, after freshly being released from the Korovou jail cell. Now this was conveniently at the same time that I went on a morning stroll to fetch some eggs for breakfast. But we were dating, because I was not wearing my canvas and going on my normal morning run, but was wearing sandals and a sulu. And because my choice in clothing, this was proof that I did not come from my house, but instead slept elsewhere other than. And on my return from town, we were sworn to have been seen holding hands and kissing. Because what kind of good Fijian story would this be without some nice juicy details, most definitely not a good one!
As I look back, I laugh. At the creative gift that Fijians’ have for telling stories. And how these stories are spread quicker than wildfire through a channel known throughout Fiji as Coconut Wireless. These stories, true or untrue, are a very effective way of spreading news. More often started as, “Did you hear…” or ” I saw…”. Much like a game of Telephone back in the states. Because no, I was never dating a felon. I was merely getting groceries when approached by a young male who accompanied me to the store. And this was just another Coconut Wireless story that featured me.