Sunday, December 26, 2010

Random Fun Facts

Here are some random fun facts/stories about my life in Tonga:
  • I am lucky. My neighbour has a washing machine. So I get to put my clothes in the washing machine and the only thing I have to do by hand is rinse them. No hand washing for Kaitlin! Sweeeet!
  • In an effort to be nice, some of the Tongans in my village try to translate my name back into English. They translate Katalina into Katherine, despite the fact that I explained my name is actually Kaitlin. As a result, I respond to Katherine, Katalina, Lina, and of course, palangi.
  • I successfully cooked for myself the other night, for the first time in Tonga! I made rice and vegetables. It was delicious. I was also very proud of myself, since I am not much of a cook. However, Tongans don't really understand vegetarianism very well- it took a bit of explaining. So when my principal's wife, Vau, asked me if I had cooked myself dinner and I proudly explained what I had made, her reaction was "...that is all? Tomorrow, I will look for eggs for you. I am worried you do not eat enough." I then had to explain that it was okay, I could get my own eggs and I actually eat fine. They are always so worried about me!
  • I tried to bake a cake for Viniseni (my principal), Vau, and their family since they have been cooking so many meals for me. Baking is also a great way to make friends and integrate in Tonga. But, I am not much of a baker either. So my cake was not very good. But my neighbours ate it anyway and even said it was good and I was poto, smart, for making it.
  • I have mice housemates. I think they only come out at night. They recently stole my toilet paper. Silly mice. They don't bother me now but hopefully they don't get any worse!
  • I eva pe (just walk around) a lot to wave to people in my village so they know who I am. Eva-ing is a big activity here in Tonga. It's a little weird to them that I do it alone but the kids come with me sometimes too!
  • I recently finished my first journal! That is the one Jamie gave me for my 21st birthday- thanks Jamie! Next is the one Monica gave me as a gift before I left. So everyone be proud- I've been writing a lot, even if it hasn't been on my blog.
  • Tongans have beautiful voices. The singing in church is absolutely amazing.
  • No, I do not go to the beach everyday.
  • Tonga Group 76 is by far the most fascinating group of people I've ever met in my entire life (no offense to any of you). Everyone has such interesting backgrounds and stories that they are very willing to share. They are also very intelligent. We mesh pretty well.
  • I had my first proposal for a Tongan moa (boyfriend or girlfriend) the other day. First let me explain that boyfriend or girlfriend must be used loosely. You can be texting with someone and be their moa, you can be walking with them on the street, you can actually be dating them- it's quite a wide range of activities and relationships. Tongans also frequently have multiple moas. So one of the boys in the group I was doing Christmas stuff with said "I think it is time for you to have a Tongan boyfriend." I said "Oh, really?" and he said "Yes, you should, would you like one?" I laughed and said "I think I am okay right now, I have not been here too long. I'm alright." And he said "You are okay?" And I said yes. He then didn't talk to me for the next couple of days so I felt kind of bad but we're okay now. A better way to handle it would have been with humour, such as "Oh, I already have 10 moas!" Or to just laugh and say, "You'd have to ask Viniseni first!" or something like that. But I was so caught off guard that I did not handle it well. Oh well, now I know for next time!

These are just random bits of information that have come to mind while I've been sitting at the computer. If there are questions you have about my life, or day to day activities or anything, definitely leave a comment and ask! I'll do my best to address them when I next get the chance to be online.



1 comment:

  1. Very important question: Was the cake you baked better or worse than the half square/ half round one you baked for me in HH and then had to hide in the cabinet so the boys couldn't find it?

    Miss you! (But I really only miss you a little bit. Like to the front of my teeth.)