We had a great, if tiring, time. Here are some photos.
We checked in at our hotel and then went across the road to the park. It's become something of a custom for us to spend sometime drawing when away on holidays. Here are Sophie and Bethany at work.
Here is the view. Inspirational!
Later on Sophie and Bethany went to play in the playground and we saw some friends. Actually we've only met them once before (three years ago) but we got on famously then and we did again now. We've been hoping since we met them that they would come to work at Talua and it looks like they will be arriving next year. We're really excited. They have two girls around the same ages as Sophie and Bethany.
Then when it was dinner time (it was getting dark) we went to the market house to get some take-away local food (which Bethany eats in preference to my cooking) but all the prepared food was finished. Then we decided to eat at the small eating booths, but most of them were closed (it was Friday night and many of the women that run them are SDA) and the ones that were open were full. We stood there trying to work out what to do. My budget didn't really extend to eating out at a resturant Friday night as well as Saturday as we planned. Then all of a sudden our friends from Sarete (where we've been doing field experience) were by our sides. There was a coconut in my hand. Bethany was given money to buy magoes. Sophie was given a bunch of peanuts. A bunch of bananas and a string of lettuces soon followed. We went back to our hotel and together with the bread and cheese we'd bought earlier, we truly had a feast. Here are the girls opening peanut shells.
And here they are doing some fabric painting. We were given a small hobby-tex kit a while ago and decided this was a good time to give it a go. We really enjoyed it.
The next morning we finished our paintings, spent a small time in the playground again (eating peanuts) before...
... heading off to Aore Island resort for lunch. It's quite a spiffy resort but has reasonably priced lunches and a free ferry service. We ate lunch and then swam in the pool, watched the fish in the reef and played on the beach.
We also made a friend at the hotel who came with us to for lunch. She is a Filipino volunteer who has been working with the Agricultural College on the east coast of Santo. She took this photo for us.
We caught the ferry back to the mainland and met Glen and Matthew for ice-cream (always a treat) and dinner a little later.
On the way home we came across a ute that was stuck blocking the road. We couldn't pass. His back wheel was off the road, and as the road is just beside the sea, hanging out over the sea. It's only a foot or two up, but that's hair-raising enough!! Our new Talua truck being 4WD was able to easily tow them back onto the road. When we passed the spot where they had been stuck it looked more like the road had given way underneath the truck than they had run off the road. We wondered if there might have been a particularly high tide with the tsunami causing erosion which made this happen when it did just now. Anyway, an exciting end to our time away.
We seemed to spend a lot of time with other people for a time away together. This was interesting as I never usually interact with other women so much when away. I think it happened this time because Glen wasn't around. It was also really encouraging for me. It think God knew it was exactly what I needed at this time... to feel part of a community and know that I have friends here, too.
The girls and I also had some time just being together; doing things together and talking and praying. Lovely.