This last week Mark and I have been spending the morning in Nuapapu and the afternoons in Matamaka. At both schools we are practicing Christmas songs with the kids and doing little activities.
The Matamaka PTA decided on Monday that they would coordinate lunches with a different family every day so we could get to meet the students parents, and more people in the Matamaka community.
Its been great getting to meet families one by one. Usually we meet people at times when we are hearing 5+ names at a time...it gets so hard to remember who is who.
While all of our lunch dates have been going really well, and all the experiences are interesting, one in particular I want to share. There is an Italian man living in Matamaka. He is older, but you'd never guess it. He has two children in the primary school and their mother (who is Tongan) is currently out of the picture. He is such an interesting dude-I honestly could have stayed for hours! He speaks only a little English, less Tongan than I do, and he's being living here for years. I was pleasantly surprised to find he used to be a cook, and his food was delicious! But what really won me over was the moment he put on Micheal Buble.
There are so very, so so very few moments here in Tonga when something reminds me of home...there's just not much ..overlap, ever. But in his house, which was more...well, westernized looking, eating anything other than root crop, and to top it off with Buble...gets me all confused. I honestly forgot for a moment where we were...moments like these are so weird, and usually strangely emotional. I blinked back a tear and preceded to thoroughly enjoy myself.
I've been making banana bread more often than normal (taking treats to our neighbors is one of our meet people tricks), and everrrry time I pull the loaf out, I remember that time I made chocolate chip banana bread at the blue house. Remember Elders? It wasn't cooked all the way and I dumped the loaf out all over the counter...then proceeded to eat it with a spoon. (sorry for everyone who doesn't care about this story). I honestly laugh aloud every time.
Anyways, it's just good to remember.