Tuesday 23 July 2019
All dressed up for the giving and receiving of gifts Port Resolution
We gave some freshly caught fish to a lady in the village, Moni, to feed her family; (the villagers struggle to go far outside the reef in their small boats. ) She gave us some lettuce, limes papayas and spring onions by way of thanking us, and showed us around her small house and garden, proudly showing us her mother pig with several tiny piglets.
So, prior to the ceremony, I asked her if I was appropriately dressed to meet the chief - she insisted that I should wear one of her dresses, very generously introducing me to all the many family members getting ready in her living room and taking me into the sleeping room and giving me a colourful 'mother Hubbard' dress which was carefully stored in a suitcase. it was light cotton and very colourful, she wanted me to keep it as a memory of our visit to Tanna. How wonderfully generous of her, when they have so little in the way of material timings. (as skipper I was required to speak briefly to all the assembled crowd and hand over Tintin's gifts to the chief).
Every one of the sailors was given a coconut and a woven hat to wear - very fetching! the schoolchildren wore their school uniforms and sang for us, and the women mostly wore colourful dresses, painted their faces and dressed their small children in their Sunday best clothes. The lady in the last photo below is Moni's cousin, Alice, listening to one of the elders speaking.