Editorial comment – Living life

Petero Vunidilo with a picture of him and his fiancee Kathleen Canavan. Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

LIFE is full of contrasts.

Yet there has to be a balance somehow. When there is good, there’s obviously room for bad somewhere, somehow.

Yesterday, a 24-year-old man from Namosi poured his heart out.

Petero Vunidilo’s heart was broken.

He was in an emotional state.

He spoke about the love of his life.

Marriage had been in the pipeline.

Life was rosy as it was.

To a certain extent, it was near perfect.

There were issues.

However, every relationship has its fair share of that anyway.

So unless you factored in the distance that separated them, Mr Vunidilo living in Fiji and his partner Kathleen Canavan, 23, living in Melbourne, Australia, then life was looking good.

Mr Vunidilo spoke about how Ms Canavan tried to extend her visit here.

He spoke about how she sought information on how she could find work in Fiji because her heart was in Fiji.

She lamented how she was unsuccessful in trying to organise a visa for him to travel with her to Australia.

Mr Vunidilo said since their first meeting in 2017, “Kathleen has been flying in and out of the country”.

“She loved it here and it was love at first sight for the both of us,” he said.

His world came crashing down on Saturday when he got the news that Ms Canavan was a passenger in an ultra-light plane that plunged into a lake in Central Victoria, Australia, killing her.

The aircraft was being flown by Ms Canavan’s uncle, Dan Canavan, who was rescued by a passing fishing boat.

Ms Canavan had returned to her Melbourne home the day before the tragedy after spending a month-long holiday in Namosi and Navua.

Mr Vunidilo described Ms Canavan as someone who loved and cared for other people.

“We were so in love we planned on getting married next year,” he said.

In contrast, a 79 year-old Lautoka woman is living alone in decrepit and unsanitary conditions after allegedly being abandoned by her family.

We found out that Ram Devi lives in a cement board home at Vatamai on the outskirts of Lautoka, without electricity or running water.

She said she was fearful of strangers because of the traumatic events that led to her living on her own.

Ms Devi claimed her four sons had abandoned her after each got married.

She also claimed that a grandson she helped rear had tricked her into signing over one of her properties and burnt her belongings once he had possession of her land.

Ms Devi’s plight was brought to the attention of The Fiji Times by PYGMIES (Providing Young Generations Movement In Every Situation) youth club president Josateki Labalaba.

The group is now keen to assist the woman.

The two scenarios offer a glimpse of the realities of life. Life has its many pitfalls.

It can be an emotional rollercoaster ride.

Different people are going through different phases of life today.

There is love, sadness, hate and joy.

Perhaps we can reflect on them today as we go about our lives, and hopefully learn something, and maybe appreciate who we are, and those around us.

Sometimes we take things for granted. Perhaps we should reflect, and embrace life.

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