We’ve had truly lovely experiences with the local people we’ve met here in Tonga. I don’t want our last post to cast a pall, so I’m going to focus on the overwhelmingly positive interactions instead!
We pulled into an anchorage at Nuapapu island one evening, and were shortly greeted by a small boat. It was a schoolteacher from the village with several of her students.
Visiting each boat in turn- Totem, IO, Oso, and a Danish cruiser- they handed us an invitation.
Naturally, we accepted! The next morning, we motored over to the village’s dock and made our way up the hill. No roads here- just a dirt footpath.
We were greeted by children running down the path toward us, to make sure we’d reach the two-room (K-6) schoolhouse. The ambassadors had a few prepared sentences to introduce themselves and welcome us, and with broad smiles, lead us to the school. The teachers made introductions, then invited the children to share some songs and dances with us.
We took turns doing introductions to help with English practicing, and then shared a few songs of our own! Afterwards, we took a school photo on the porch.
We brought them some early reader books to help with English introduction and practice. The morning was like a gift: the kindness and warmth from our hosts lingers long after!
Returning home to our boats from the Nuapapu dock