Friday, June 4, 2010

Feleti’s Island Bungalow Weekend Retreat and CORAL PROJECT Take TWO

PHOTO: One of my guest with the children who were all so eager to swim with us.

A few weekends ago, some PCVs visited Matamaka for a little palangi weekend retreat at my island bungalow. Everyone has been a bit stressed out about work and Tongan culture for awhile now, so some relaxing time with friends has been long overdue. Feleti’s Island Bungalow Resort is open for anyone who wants some malolo time in Vava’u.

The entire weekend started when I went back into town Friday afternoon to meet all the volunteers. I picked up some food and essentials for the weekend. There are always boats that leave Neiafu late Friday afternoon to bring the high school students back to the island. Everyone enjoyed the boat ride over to Matamaka. We watched the beautiful sunset across the horizon. Dinner was vegetarian calzones which we had extra and had given to the men at kava. It turned out that they did not really like it and ate kumala instead. LOL. One of the PCVs served the kava too, which was a big hit with the men.

PHOTO: Feleti's "secret" beach.

Saturday was day full of adventures. We hiked to the neighboring village through the jungles of Nuapapu. Believe it or not, there are still some areas that have not been “touched” yet. It is pristine Tongan wilderness at its best. Afterwards, we made it to the “secret” beach. There is a name for the beach, but I can never remember the name. No one goes to this beach as the path has not been cleared for years. As a result, it was the ideal place for a little palangi time since we had it all to ourselves.

PHOTOS: Our coral gardens made out of giant clam shells and Ma'asi smiling for the camera underwater.

One of the PCVs also had an underwater camera, which we used to photograph our Matamaka GPS Coral Gardens. I had invited the students to go swimming around the gardens. We all had a good time taking our photo opportunities with the corals. Later that evening, we made pepperoni/pineapple pizza and vegetable pesto pizza with eggplants, peppers, onions and more. Let’s just say it was beyond delicious. Another volunteer also made seafood soup which was a huge hit; even the dogs wouldn’t eat it. LOL. We ended the evening with a bonfire by the beach and listened to songs with a guitar. One of the local boys played the ukulele and sang songs to the girls. They were very much flattered by this.

We ended the weekend with some people getting some work done at the school library while a fellow volunteer went to all of my Sunday church routine. All six hours of it to be exact. They all went with me to the Pentecost service and enjoyed a delicious ‘umu/picnic prepared by the church members. The food of course was amazing. The entire weekend ended shortly afterwards. I waited with all the peeps at the wharf where a boat awaited them heading back to town. We took one last group photo, before Feleti’s Island Bungalow weekend retreat was over. Until next time…

PHOTO: My first guests to my village. Good times good times.

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