Welcome to GVI Fiji's Community Development Programme blog. Here you can keep up to date with our projects in Fiji.

Monday, November 4, 2013

My Stay in Vuaki Village

After a boat trip, we arrived on the beach of Vuaki at about 3 pm. We, the Construction Team, were invited to stay in the village for one night. We walked the path from the beach into the village arrived directly at Bill’s house. That’s the house where I stayed.

I brought my backpack into the room Bill and his wife sat aside for me. In my room was a bed with a thick mattress. Pretty cool! In the living room the GVI volunteers and staff snacked on some cookies and enjoyed a nice talk with Bill’s wife, children (Simone – two years, Napoleon – six months) and some relatives before we went for seeing how the men built a bure (traditional Fijian home) with traditional tools like sticks and stones.

At about 5:45 pm the main point of the evening started. We went along another path to another village. There was a big celebration. After a thirty-minute walk through the woods, we arrived in Long Beach. The women cooked while men pounded kava. I tried to help pound kava. To do this, you take your hand around an iron stick and push the stick with a lot of power onto the kava root while it is an iron container. I did it only about three times, but I did it. :)

When the food was ready to eat, we took a seat in a new-but-not-completely-set-up house. The sitting area was 5-6 meters long. There were tablecloths (on the floor) and on it the plates. Just plates, no cutlery. I liked it. :) People sat on both sides on the tablecloths. And then it came, the part I looked forward to most (the food)! Yeah!! There was octopus, fish, crabs, pork, sticks with small chillies. It was delicious. Maybe it was the best fish I’ve ever eaten. After four plates, I washed my hands in a small bowl with water, left the food house, and entered a traditional cottage.

This place had a special atmosphere for me. Inside were three women. The wood and leaf walls were decorated with materials. In the middle of the women stood an oil lamp that gave just enough light to see, not too much and not too little, just enough to create a great atmosphere. During one or two mugs of black tea we had nice talks. It was a pretty good moment. At about 10pm we went back along the path with the same children and torches. I slept well.

For breakfast I had freshly baked coconut cake which gave my stay a nice end. The people in Vuaki are very friendly. They laugh a lot and make you feel like they love to have you in their home. They are also very good cooks. My stay was traditional. Thank you for the great experience.

Michael Sander (AKA ‘The Machine’), Germany
4 week Yasawa Construction Volunteer