Fiji Time: 10:41 AM on Saturday 28 November

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Debris provides opportunity

Shalveen Chand
Sunday, February 02, 2014

WHEN the skies cleared on Friday morning, the Vatukarasa beach side was awash with debris.

Trees, branches, bamboo stalks and even fruits and vegetables that drifted away in the flood waters were pushed back to the shore by the massive waves that constantly pound that part of the Coral Coast.

The debris provided Vatukarasa villagers the opportunity to pile up on their firewood supply.

Epeli Natika, 42, was among those hoping to stock up on firewood, the most common source of fuel for villagers along the Coral Coast.

"Any wood thrown into the sea, when it comes back, it's the best for firewood. So far I think I have collected at least a month's supply easily," he said.

"This debris is from the flood. Last night, (Thursday) the river was raging. Although there was no threat to our village, I felt sorry for those living along the river."

With the unusually high tides experienced in the past few days, there were worries about sea water seeping into the village boundary.

"That has never happened at Vatukarasa but Naviti and up along the highway, the water does come onto the land.

"Right now its sila (corn) season, and all the bamboo that I am collecting will go towards helping me cook the sila and sell them at the roadside," said Mr Natika.

The floods had little effect on the villages along Coral Coast.

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