Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Taveuni 2012 Journal Entry

In February, earlier this year, I spent 17 magnificent hours onboard the Lomaiviti Princess bound for Taveuni stopping at Koro and Savusavu. Hours before my friends and I, disembarked the Lomaiviti Princess, I found a quiet spot at the stern of the vessel to really think about things, things that one can only think about, whilst  travelling back to a place, that resonated so much with their sense of identity.

“A few things dawn on me as the Lomaiviti Princess steers into the Taveuni harbour. One, I can not believe that I am finally travelling off the main island with a few of my closest friends and two; I am pleasantly reminded of how beautiful my island home is. The calm ocean, clear skies broken every now and then by a puff of white cloud and of course the lush green of the landscape breaking the blue of the ocean and the blue of the heavens.
With today being my nephews’, Joseph Samuel, 1st birthday, a haunting question pollutes my thoughts. In 20 odd years, will Seph be able to bring his mates to a land that is home to at least five generations of his kinship? Will he want to? Or worse still, will it even be a possibility? Is the Taveuni, I am about to rediscover with my friends, the Taveuni my late grandfather, Byron Fisher, knew? The Taveuni Seph will know?
Is the magic of a ‘vanua’ based on the environment, or on its inhabitants? Are they intrinsically connected? Does the land maketh the man or does the man maketh the land? As a product of this generation, to what degree does my ‘vanua’ influence my identity, my culture, traditions and personality?
With today also marking the one year anniversary since my return from the Ship for the World Youth 23 I also have realised that my life since then has completely changed. Now all I wish to do is live a life of service and be used as a vessel to bless those around me. That’s what being a leader means, serving others, being of the people, for the people, putting others before you!
Disembarking, a complete stranger smiles at me, instantly I’m reminded of our people. We are warm, friendly and trustworthy, nothing that can happen will change that

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