Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas in Tanna!

      Because Vanuatu is such a spread out country - the islands cover over 800 miles from north to south, it is impossible to gather all of the missionaries together for a Christmas activity.  Consequently, each area had there own celebration.  The senior couples were to host the events in each location.  The Mortensen's are in the Solomon Islands.  The Jolley's are on Malakula.  The William's are on Santo and gathered the missionaries from Ambae as well.  The Call's and the Wallace's are in Port Vila on Efate.  So -- we were assigned to travel to Tanna for Christmas.  There is not a couple serving there and Port Vila has three of the couples.
      This is the plane that we flew on to Tanna.  It didn't seem very big.  And - the ocean seemed immense.  The district leaders met us at the airport and took us to the Evergreen Resort.  We only had one small suitcase between us.  However, we had six large boxes packed with Christmas things for the missionaries.

     There were fresh cut flowers all over the room.  The flowers here are beautiful.  Sadly, they do not last long enough.
      The room was very small.  It just  had a double bed.  The walls were all of leaf construction - as was the ceiling.  We had a shared bathroom with another little hut.
      We could hear everything going on at the resort.  One night there was a chicken in a box outside our room.  It was packed to go on the plane the next day.  It made noise all night long.  We think that it was trying to scratch its way out.

This is outside of the resort - on the beach.  It was a very warm day!
      The tree roots are so gnarly.  They have to be above the ground, because they can not get inside the coral.  There is very little soil in Vanuatu that is not just a thin coating on the coral.
      The restaurant at the Evergreen Resort was wonderful.  The food was a real treat.  It was outdoors so we had various bird visitors.  We only had three meals there.  The Christmas buffet that was posted sounded incredible, but we flew home that morning.
Clyde was usually checking the weather
forecast or some such thing.
      There were incredibly beautiful sunsets.  However, we did not stay outside long because of all of the bugs.  For some reason, they really like to eat Clyde.  I keep telling him that it is mind over matter.  He just doesn't believe me!
Beautiful skies - and this was from where we were eating dinner.  I didn't stand up!

      On Christmas morning, we returned to the airport.  With all of the boxes delivered, we were much lighter.  The plane for the return trip was even smaller.  It held sixteen passengers.  However, it was a relatively new plane!

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