|Note the mixture of décor: both Christian and Polynesian|
|The grounds of the Catholic|
Church were lovely.
|Looking out through the original entrance to the old church|
|The design of the church was beautiful as was the use |
of stone, wood, and many carvings.
The Catholic Church in Nuka Hiva was one of the most beautiful we have seen. It is relatively new, but built on the sight of the old church. We have so enjoyed visiting the island churches for Sunday Mass to hear the local people sing in their native language. The Church has allowed the people to celebrate their ancient religions within the same walls. There are Christian statues as well as carvings of their religious leaders and animals. All of it is well done and complimentary of the space.
|We saw traditional dances. Boy!|
Could those girls move their hips!
|There was an opportunity to try|
our hands at some of the many
crafts and flower arts.
This was a spread of fruits and coconut made in differentways. All of this before the traditional meal, too!
|The women did the singing and the men did most of|
the dancing, except for a young girl who did a
beautiful Bird Dance. She was so fluid and graceful.
And all of that was before dinner! We then went to their community center where we ate the traditional foods and watch a dance performance that was outstanding. I have many video clips that I will try to share when I get enough Internet bandwidth to post them. Unfortunately, they did not brief us on the stories that were being told through dance and singing so we had to guess what it was. It was most enjoyable at any rate.
|He was obviously the chief in the story being told through|
song and dance, but there was no interpretation for us.
We spent time walking around the village and seeing the Tiki remains. The islanders are working very hard to maintain a connection with their heritage. The government encourages the teaching of the native language along with French. They are preserving archaeological sacred sites throughout the islands.
In Nuka Hiva, there is a park where the stone remains are on display. They have also replicated some of the most important Tiki monuments that are protected on other islands so the people have access to them here.
While in Nuka Hiva, we had a disaster with our dinghy. The fuel dock here is known to be challenging so we had a plan in place to manage the purchase of fuel. Unfortunately, we were unable to execute it in the time we planned since another boat took longer to leave the dock than we expected. As a result, the ever challenging tide got the best of us.
|A sad day for our dinghy. The repair cost us several|
days. As the rest of the fleet moved on, we waited for the
repair to cure. Now it looks like a pirate with a patched eye!
|The WARC gathering place or watering hole!|
Another daily pleasure was checking out the catch from the fishermen. One day one of them came in with a large shark's head. Something bigger had eaten the body! After they clean the fish right there on the quay, they throw the trimmings into bay and the sharks attack the mess! It does provide for some entertainment, though. We were warned not to swim in this harbor and now I know why!