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Aspiring Surveyor Isei Gives His Parents A Break

While his peers are enjoying their end of the school year holidays Isei Baleilevuka has been giving his parents a break at the Nabua Market. Baleilevuka, 18, has been waking
29 Dec 2017 11:00
Aspiring Surveyor Isei  Gives His Parents A Break
Isei Baleilevuka (top left) arranging heaps of eggplants at the Nabua Market with helper Lasaro Saqanavere. Photo: Vilimoni Vaganalau.

While his peers are enjoying their end of the school year holidays Isei Baleilevuka has been giving his parents a break at the Nabua Market.

Baleilevuka, 18, has been waking up as early as 4am to be at the Suva Municipal market to buy fresh supplies for his family business.

“I don’t miss out on anything, without this market I would not have achieved what I have achieved so far,” the Matuku lad said.

With maternal links to Lakeba, Baleilevuka proudly quips that he had been to his island in the Lau Group.

“I was there last Christmas and I really enjoyed myself,” he said.

Baleilevuka attends Latter Day Saints College and he goes into Year 13 next year after his passing his Year 12 exams this year.

He intends to be a surveyor and as a technical science student he is confident in achieving his goal.

“I give my parents a break during the school holidays as they usually join me later in the afternoon,” he said.

“By 4am I am at the Nabua roadside to catch a taxi to the Suva market.

“There I buy vegetables from farmers; I go for quality and freshness. Then I don’t go every day. I only go to replenish our stock.

Some farmers bring their produce directly to his stall. This includes coconuts, pumpkin and chillies.

Then he does not run short of helping hands as there are young boys within the vicinity who occasionally drop in to assist him.

Two regulars at his stall are Tetulo Patrick Sauvoli, 12 and Lasaro Saqanavere, 10.

Tetulo is originally from Namacu in Koro while Lasaro is from Saliadrau in Namosi.

Lasaro who had gone to his village for Christmas stayed around yesterday to catch up with Baleilevuka.

According to Baleilevuka the two are neighbours who after finishing their chores join him for pastime.

“They are always willing to help, I guess they are learning one thing or two,” he said.

“They were fascinated with the fact when I told them that I have been helping my parents since I was small.

“Then life is a struggle, it is the money my parents make from this business that has assited me and my younger sister to be at school.

Baleilevuka took Commercial Studies in Years Nine and Ten but dropped the subject as he wanted to have the right subject combination for his dream career – a surveyor.

“I only help my parents during the holidays, during the school terms I concentrate on my classes and of course I like playing rugby union.

“I play flanker for my school, when my parents come in in the afternoon I join my Nabua neighbours for a game of rugby touch.

“Then on Fridays and Saturdays I stay around until the supermarket closes as that is when we really get busy.”

Eggplants selling at $1 a heap. Photos: Vilimoni Vaganalau.

Eggplants selling at $1 a heap. Photos: Vilimoni Vaganalau.

Coconuts selling at $5 a heap.

Coconuts selling at $5 a heap.

Bananas selling at $2 a bundle.

Bananas selling at $2 a bundle.

 

 

MARKET LIST

Bananas – $1 a heap to $7 a bunch

Eggplants – $1 a heap

Pumpkin – $2 a piece, $3-5 (whole )

Coconuts – $5 a heap, $15 a dozen

Dalo – $15 a bundle

Tavioka – $3/$5 a heap

Moca – $2 a bundle

Bongo chillies – $2 a heap

Small chillies – $2 a heap

 

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