Different yes

Salsa af Stavsnas
Ellinor Ristoff Staffan Ehde
Thu 20 Nov 2014 08:01
Most of the time yachtees seem to agree or at least avoid controversies. You find out ways to test one another and if somebody trust that God will help them in a storm you let that be that way. But now we have an open controversy that is really visible and it is interesting how different the reactions are. Here is a small community with boats from Italy, Germany, Holland, England, Ireland, South Africa, Sweden (us only), Canada, USA, Poland and even Austria.
In this very protected bay we are probably all in all 20 boats moored with good distances. Around us is the town of Savusavu and some villages that are managed the traditional way, with a village chief.
Anyway Fiji is changing like the rest of the world, and there are more people coming from Suva for instance. With that the crime rate has gone up but is still very low. Unfortunately there has been 7 brake ins to yachts in the anchorage. 4 of them aimed at the same yacht and 2 on another. The good news is that the yachts are left for the season, so nobody was stirred up at night by some burglars. The yacht that has had 4 break ins is actually looking abandoned which the owner does not admit (he lives in a house ashore), and the boat is interfering with all traffic in a small bay, the skipper has put lines right across from one end to other.
Anyway what is interesting is how the reaction arises. we have decided to have boat watch and there has been a lot of constructive discussions with the police, but yesterday was a real clash. We all met to go and have a sevusevu with one of the village chiefs and to ask for advice on how to stop the crimes on the boats. There had also been some youngsters being loud one night swimming around a boat and when the couple asked them to leave they behaved very rude.
Some people really thought that the only way to solve the problem was to set up boundaries like no trespassing within 25 meters around a boat (we are the intruders!), to get really aggressive with anybody coming near etc.  You could easily say there is a face to fear that is not nice. Thank god the majority tried to cool the "machos" and succeeded and once we went for the sevusevu our representative Curly could speak for all of us and he was very careful with just asking for assistance. No blaming, no threats etc.
Curly who lived here for 40 years said to all of us that in Fiji you can always solve a problem with sevusevu and to talk.
Anyway, it was a real eye opener and I truly believe this is a problem we have in the world, we and them, and that creates unnecessary aggressions.

Meeting before

Sevusevu with the chief, Curly is the guy with the white beard

After the sevusevu, atmosphere relaxed, the chief has promised to help us