The Tongans are devout Free Wesleyans (Christians) and the
king is head of the church.
Sundays are strictly observed, no fishing or swimming, and in
the morning church bells can be heard everywhere.
So…. we went to church and listened to a tongan
service with wonderful singing by the choir, the local rugby club and the rest
of the congregation.
One local preacher welcomed us and said a little prayer in
English for the ‘’visitors’
Dust Buggy Safari
Monday saw us take a tour of the island on dust buggies,
which are four wheel drive go carts with roll bars. It was very exciting off
roading through plantations and local villages and we stopped at some fantastic
Farewell to Malc & Sandie
On Tuesday we said a sad farewell to Malc & Sandie who
set off on their three day trek to get back to the UK.
Dinghy Race and Tongan Feast
Tonga is not one
island but consists of a group of around 1100 islands and called the Kingdom of Tonga.
Wednesday saw us take a leisurely trip through some of the
islands to anchor off a sandy beach and prepare for the Blue Water Rally dinghy
The race started at 3.00pm, dingies had to be propelled by
wind alone, no motors or oars.
There were some ingenius rigs and sails, we kept things
simple and hoisted our huge England
flag tied to the boat hook and hoped not to disgrace ourselves like the football
Our secret weapon was two large umbrellas bought from the
local supermarket and if all else failed we were armed with water pistols and plastic
jugs to disrupt the other entries as much as possible !
We didn’t win but we didn’t disgrace ourselves
either and a great afternoon was had by all.
In the evening a Traditional Tongan Feast was prepared for
Numerous trestle tables in one long display were covered
with banana leaves and little parcels of all sorts of food were piled up high along
the tables, it was an amazing site. Chicken wrapped in banana leaves, sweet
potato, fish cakes, thai salad, octopus salad, suckling pig, bananas, melon,
each individual portions.
It looked a bit like a car boot sale only using food !
The local chief said a prayer and then we tucked in using
just our hands, no plates, cutlery or napkins at this feast !
Pink Beach Barbeque
The next day we anchored off another beautiful sandy island for
snorkelling, swimming and a ‘bring your own’ beach barbeque.
It was Charlie’s 14th birthday celebration
so everyone dressed in pink and we had pink birthday cake.
We transformed the beach into a dinghy park and ‘pink’
gathering – another lovely day.