THE ink on our marriage licence was still wet when Australians were told to return home from overseas.
It was the first morning of mine and Tom's honeymoon.
We were lucky that we held our wedding before 'social distancing' was a common phrase. Event restrictions were announced by the end of the following day.
In a beautiful beach side ceremony, we celebrated with 107 friends and family. The day was a rush of colour and celebration.
Now we were in Fiji, ready to relax and and unwind for seven nights after a year of juggling jobs, family, and wedding planning.
Being a journalist, I'm a meticulous researcher and spent months choosing just the right package and location. I honestly thought we'd be able to wait out the 'toilet paper crisis' in Fiji and then return to a country that was more or less back on its feet.
We arrived on a Tuesday night and woke up to the following message on my phone from a work mate:
"ScoMo just closed the borders."
A little research confirmed we would still be let into the country but that we must return home as soon as possible.
The next day our flight carrier announced it would suspend all international flights from March 30.
"Thank God," I said. "We'll just make it back in."
We both felt desperately in need of a holiday and thought we could finally relax, despite feeling somewhat absurd for lounging about poolside while people died and countries closed down.
We went for our first - and only - couples massage and visited the restaurant, all the while watching the news from Italy and other countries with a mounting sense of horror.
Then our flight was cancelled.
A $200 international call later and we were booked to leave on Saturday night instead of the following Tuesday March 24.
The next couple of days were tense. We were effectively restricted to the resort as one by one tour operators closed their doors and the Fijian prime minister Frank Bainimarama announced social restrictions.
The resort itself was almost empty. Virtually having a resort to yourselves is not as fun as it sounds.
When you're on holiday, other holidaymakers help to bring a sense of fun and vibrancy. Without them it was a complex of largely empty, silent buildings.
Despite that, the staff were extremely hospitable, treating us like any other vacationer at any other time.
Then Fiji's first case of the coronavirus was announced. It was an airline steward who had flown in with Fiji Air.
The shift was palpable.
"I'm nervous about the virus," one staff member said. "Next week none of us will have jobs."
We immediately began leaving tips for the staff.
One pool attendant was surprised when I said we were Australian.
"I thought they had all left," he said.
On Saturday we began to pack with a weird sense of relief and sadness. Neither Tom nor I felt that we belonged in Fiji anymore.
New measures were being announced by the Fijian government and some resort staff were starting to quite literally jump aside when they saw us coming.
No longer did we get a bright 'Bula!' (hello) from every Fijian we saw. The smiles were replaced with looks of worry.
While packing we got a call from reception. A tropical rain had set in and we needed to leave an hour earlier than planned, before the only road out was flooded.
We looked at each other with bemusement at that point - it seemed a fitting end.
We packed, rushed to settle our account and get the hell outta Dodge. Water pelted down all around us on the minibus and we crossed one bridge literally 30 seconds before it was closed.
We finally boarded the plane at Nadi airport, which was really quiet.
The plane, however, was packed full of the last Australians rushing to get home. Tom spoke to a woman whose flights for her and her two children had been cancelled three times.
We seemed to be one step ahead of the increasing restrictions the whole time - our wedding was one day before restrictions were announced, we had landed in Fiji before travel restrictions for Australians were put in place, and we made it back right before airlines began shutting down international operations.
We've been in mandatory quarantine in Ararat since then. As far as beginning a marriage goes, it's been a bizarre one. We famously both get stressed in ways that don't mesh well when under pressure, but somehow we weathered so many storms in that first week and we both managed to keep things in perspective.
We were both healthy, we both had jobs to return to, and most important of all, we were married.
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