This morning we went to the training, which turned out to further out than we anticipated. We were told to go to Honeymoon Beach, and it would be right across the street. Getting there involved going out of town, down continuously more narrow and bumpy roads full of crazy potholes, in a bus (which are vans which will generally take you wherever you ask them to) that seemed a bit rickety to begin with. Fortunately there aren't too many buildings out there, so it didn't take long to discover that it was being held in a large community room at a campground. One thing we hadn't been anticipating was that they were all speaking Bislama. Fortunately we've been working on trying to learn some, and it's close enough to English that you can pick out a fair amount. The native English speakers are so much easier to follow because they speak it more clearly and precisely. Since it was a subject we're familiar with, were able to understand enough of what was being said to follow along. They gave us a binder full of fliers and info and articles, pretty much all in Bislama too. Fun!
After the training, we went over to check out Honeymoon Beach. Apparently it's one of the few white sandy beaches in Vanuatu (or this island at least?) It was beautiful and completely deserted, just this little strip of beach. There were a few small shelters that must be used for wedding ceremonies. We saw lots of little crabs, and some bigger crabs, and I saw a little sea snake too. Then down the beach there was garbage - tin cans and pieces of metal and plastic, and apron and a shoe and part of purse. Such a shame. When we left we had to walk up the road a bit to catch a bus. It was a bit like walking down a road through the jungle.
Sara wading in at Honeymoon Beach
We tried a new grocery store on the way home - Au Bon Marche Numbatu. Bislama is very phonetic, that would be Number Two. It was much bigger than the other one we've been going to, and actually had some good fish. Fish has been surprisingly hard to find here, at least some that we'd want to eat. We got a big, wonderful looking tuna steak for about $8! Just ate it for dinner, yum.
We actually just felt a small earthquake a moment ago. It's funny, I had just been thinking earlier today that earthquakes are supposed to be common here, but we hadn't felt one yet. It was just the slightest shaking and didn't last long.
Back to the hospital tomorrow!