Thursday, April 7, 2011

Party time! Village feast

In January, we arrived in the village to a hive of activity – the village was preparing for a feast that weekend. The occasion for the feast was that when one of our Uncles was driving to Arawa, he crossed a river which was high and it rolled his car. This was a situation in which he could have died, or been seriously injured, but he was fine, so this feast was celebrating the fact that our uncle had a dangerous experience and lived – definitely something to be thankful for.

Part of this celebration tradition involved washing certain people’s faces and feet with a combination of special water and leaves as shown in the picture below.

Lots of people came to our village for our feast and they all brought baskets of food for the feast. They also go back home with a basket of food too. Inside the kitchen house was very busy and full up with baskets of food.

The men constructed two special long tables for the feast food to be set out on. They were working on the tables during the week before the feast.

Some food was set out in the open on the tables, which invited the flies along, so several ladies and girls were shooing them away with various bits of trees. I managed to get in on the action too!

There was also some dancing and lots of hoots of laughter whenever someone new got up to dance. One lady got me up to dance, with reluctance on my part, though I think I got the loudest cheer of the day when I went up!

It was a really fun day and I think everyone enjoyed themselves, I certainly did. In the morning I went around from place to place in the village, seeing what everyone was doing and chatted to people. I got involved where I could – I helped with food preparation, sorting out the baskets in the kitchen and I also made a basket to be used to cook something.

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