We have waited so long to welcome this new group of Peace Corps Trainees and they're here! So let me introduce you....
This is the first new group to arrive since we came in October, 2010, and many of the staff and Volunteers on Tongatapu went to the airport on September 4 to welcome them. We had Tongan flags, a large U.S. flag, and Peace Corps emblems to wave from the observation deck as we watched them deplane.
Then we waited outside the doors to customs, and there they were! The 15 came through one-by-one and each time we shouted, welcomed, and greeted them. They were presented with a kahoa (lei).
Later that afternoon there was a kava ceremony and a dinner to share with them at Peace Corps. It was a good time to start getting to know them.
What enthusiasm and excitement. How wonderful to have them here. We'll have a few more opportunities to share with them before Group 76 starts leaving Tonga, some as early as mid-October. We wish them all the best in their adventure as Peace Corps Trainees, and later, Volunteers.