Map of Tonga in the South Pacific

Map of Tonga in the South Pacific

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

This 'n' that

A word about flexibility.
As we were waiting for our invitation to join the Peace Corps we were often asked when we’d be going and where. We’d have to answer with a lot of maybes. The constant reminder from the Peace Corps was wait and be flexible. In truth, it should be the Peace Corps motto. Everything is a maybe, depending on….

Too much rain? Change today’s schedule for Monday’s.
No airline seats available for that day? We’ll send your luggage on ahead and you’ll come 2 days later.

If this would drive you crazy, then the Peace Corps probably isn’t for you. I ‘m going on the idea that my time is their time, and I find it interesting to see how it all works.

The staff we have come to know are a dedicated, caring, and amazing group of people. We’re in capable and knowing hands. Thanks, Peace Corps!

In our village pigs are everywhere—all sizes and shapes. The houses have fences around them, but you know pigs! They wallow in the middle of the road in a large puddle after a rain. The piggy bank sized piglets follow mom around. All are docile and quickly get out of the way if you hiss at them. If they show signs of defensiveness, they are quickly roasted and eaten. If one gets inside the house’s fence, the dogs quickly bark and chase them out.

Which brings me to Friday morning. I was still in bed when I heard quite a pig-dog commotion. Sounded like they were running around the house. Then they came around a second time. The large dog and the 5 puppies were in hot pursuit. My thought, as they came around the third time was “They may come right through the house. Now that would be interesting.” Meanwhile Jim was up watching the whole thing, realized the pig couldn’t find a quick way out, and he opened the gate. End of the game, though the dogs, of course followed. The PCT living next door had watched it all. He was enjoying it like NASCAR.

Once in a while a word just strikes me as funny, or makes a picture in my head that I’m sure the Tongans never would understand. Kaukau means shower, but Fakakaukau means thinking. I like to think of it as a brain shower. Of course now I’ll never forget that word. (Unlike so many others that just don’t stick!)

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