Monday, September 5, 2011

Abemama - Off the Beaten Path

We're definitely far from the Coconut Milk Run now! The police officer told
us that only one boat came here last year - an Australian.

In our last post, I spoke of our dreams of a dinner ashore. Our hopes were
quickly dashed. Although our outdated guidebook spoke of a hotel, it clearly
hasn't been in operation in many years..

We have walked around on a few occasions. Each time, the children are
pleased to see us, and call out to us "Matang, Matang" (Foreigner).
They like practicing their english...hello/bye-bye. The adults are much more
shy. They happily respond to our greetings of "Mauri" (hello), but are
reluctant to reach out into further conversation.

On Sunday, we went ashore early, dressed in our Sunday finery, to seek out
the Catholic church. While we waited, we were befriended by a herd of
children, and eventually three of the village women joined in. We had a
lovely conversation, and they seemed impressed with the few words of
Kiribati language that we'd learned in Kanton. After church, we were invited
to join them for tea. We also met a local teacher whose english was
excellent, and he answered many of our questions about the island, and
offered to help us find a motorcycle, that we hope to use to further explore
the island.

By the far we've seen three trucks and one car on the island, but
most people get around on motor bikes. If you're into that sort of thing,
like John is, you may like to know that almost all of the bikes are Honda
Trail 90's...which apparently cost about $2000 AUD brand new. I'll have to
do some more research, but I'm guessing that the average salary in this
country is less than $4000 AUD.


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Hi - thanks for leaving a comment on the blog! Cheers - John and Naomi