For those who have followed my journey this far will perhaps like me may not have realised that it has been almost a year and my time in Kiribati is coming to an end. With less than a month to go, I have begun the wrap up process.
There was one thing I had not ticked off my list which was to host a visitor and that too was fulfilled last week! I had my very first and perhaps the only visitor from NZ which was rather exciting. She left Kiribati with an urge to return :).
Now let me fill you in on the last 3 weeks of my life. It involved a trip to the tranquil shores of an outer island, a night boat ride, lots of swimming in the clear waters of Kiribati, fishing (actually catching some), a homestay in a village in north Tarawa which involved approximately a 2 hour jouney on foot, buses, truck and a canoe which is a common journey for a good friend of mine (I still think it’s pretty novel) he he he he. Oh oh and work (just to be very clear here) plus dancing (the class as well as an all night dancing away in jandals :-))
Ah the other day, I landed in a desperate situation. Ate something not quite right and felt a bit queasy. By the afternoon, my gut knew where this was going so having said a swift goodbye, I got on my bike beginning my homeward journey. Grumble grumble grumble, I ran up the stairs and there- relief! Only when I went to press the magic flush button that I realised the absence of power. Hence no flushing toilet. I let out a nervous laughter and then used a few of the numerous bottles of water we have filled for instances like those. Then it happened again….and again and after my 4th episode, the nice electricity people turned on the power! A sigh of relief, a few clicks of the magic flush button, and life was almost normal (I use the term normal loosely). Too much info?! It hadn’t happened in months so it was almost like a first time experience. Ha ha ha.
Highlight of last week- motorbiking around the outer island through all the villages, the air strip, getting lost, seeing the blues of ocean on one side, the turquise of the lagoon on the other all the while avoiding insect bombs on my face and not loosing my passenger to ‘hi-fiving’ children!
I digress…. Well, it’s wrapping up time and to mentally prepare myself to retun to the ‘before life’. Kiribati has however changed some of me forever and given me some life long bonds! Now time to put on the logical hat and write those to-do lists 🙂
Keep you posted!
There is something I’ve noticed in the last little while that I feel like sharing with you. It makes me giggle everyday! I know some of you have spent time in the pacific and would be well aware of the ‘Island time’ concept. Well, all day at work we function at Island time. Things get done. Yet at home time, there is this odd increase in energy and work speed which I refer to as the 4pm frenzy. The work transport leaves the premises at 4:15 and most people will be loaded and ready in the bus by about 4pm. My team however always manages to make the bus wait and are often running down the stairs at 4:15. I am usually on my bike so I tend to start packing and getting ready at 4 while the rest of the team picks up work speed and start to look rather busy- quite suddenly. We giggle about it…I tell them every day that I think it’s funny they do that but they are so busy working that sometimes my goodbye goes unheard until I say something silly ofcourse!
Quote of the day: “It’s not urgent till it’s urgent”.
Let me tell you a little story. Last to last weekend, what started off as a plan involving three people ended up being an endeavour of 11! One idea just rolled and the group just fell together. It all sarted with an innocent conversation between two people about walking to broken bridge which by the way is really a broken bridge. A walk generally done during the day but I wanted to see the sunset and walk when it’s cooler so we began at 3. The journey started by dividing into cars and picking everyone and then driving to Buota navigating massive potholes. The next leg of the journey involves crossing a channel. I had done this walk a number of times before but for the first time in the evening. This channel can either be walked at low tide or a small morotised canoe runs back and forth for 50cents. On the other side is a ‘resort’ where we ordered food before embarking on our walk. We walked through a narrow strip of villages, coconut trees, volleyball nets, a makeshift soccer field and another couple of shallow channels. Finally arriving at the infamous broken bridge, we all jumped in the water. Relief! Chatting, buzzing around, it was time to leave as we could see the clouds approaching. Our journey back was mostly in the dark and wet but rather enjoyable with a broken sandal here and there, a few near misses with slips (it might have just been me!) and with an an odd feeling of being cold. Eventually we made it to the resort where dinner was served and we ate in a sharing manner after discussing the sharing procedure in quite some detail. Ha ha ha ha. The last leg of the journey involved crossing the very first cannel in the dark. Lucky we had attentive people in the group and we made it back safe and sound. Some I heard were a bit achy the next day :). I had a dance class to run so being achy was not an option! HE HE HE.