Archive for April 18th, 2010

Hanavave Falls, Fatu Hiva

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

There is a famous waterfall about an hour outside the village.

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At times the occasional stone markers in the jungle were our only clue that we were going the right way.

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It was a hot muddy trek to the falls but worth the effort.

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The pond is home to crawfish and blue eyed eels. To S’s relief we only saw crawfish.

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After swimming over for a crawfish eye view of the falls,

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and a c-nut snack,

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we took the scenic rode home, climbing a ridge to see the anchorage.

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The view of the valley was incredible.

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K really wanted to go see this hole in the rock curtain just below the top of the ridge but it would have taken days to get there.

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We passed a Mary spring in the side of a hill and stopped to have a sip. As you’d expect, the Mary water was miraculous; it was cool and clear and didn’t taste at all like the crawfish that were living in the catchment. 

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We also saw reminders of the pre-Christian era. This gent was probably the well-endowed chairman of the ancient village.

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We left the 6 ton petroglyph in place and brought home coffee beans instead.

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10°27.80’S 138°37.75’W 10-Apr-18 12:30 PDT

Le Petit Village

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

The village of Hanavave on the island of Fatu Hiva gives many edenistic impressions to the casual observer fresh from a long ocean passage. 


We began our investigation of this community in the small but heavily attended Catholic church on Sunday morning.

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There was lots of guitar and uke playing, with strong vocals from the packed pews.

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The entire service was in Marquesan except for a spicy Marquesan-French message about the habits and pitfalls of unmarried couples.  This part was very entertaining for the young people, including our new friend Marie.

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Marie brought us home to check out her husband’s carvings and then loaded us up with free bread fruit, lemons, and starfruit even though we didn’t initially buy anything. She had an awesome fruit picking net …


and a groovy turtle tattoo.

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We gave her kids some stickers and lifesavers. Candy was in high demand among the village kids, one enterprising 8 year old had set himself up as a godfather in the local Bonbon Mafia. They shook down S for half a bag of Jolly Ranchers and then came back for more after performing an inventory audit that showed  irregularities in the distribution.  Other kids were normal. Bobo and his sister both liked lifesavers without extremism.

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There were lots of cute kids in the village.

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On Sunday afternoon the local tots were turned out into the boat basin to frolic among the dock lines.

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We strolled into the suburbs and began to appreciate daily life in this place.

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The houses were all lightly built, off the ground in the standard Polynesian style.

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Everyone had a banana rack and a boat out back.


Some of the boats were beautiful outriggers that don’t see much use anymore.


We passed pigs, chickens, copra drying sheds and at least one candidate for “What Not to Wear.”

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We put down an offer on this one room retirement home (it’s within our projected budget)

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and made our out way out of town and into the bush.

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10°27.80’S 138°39.75’W 10-Apr-18 12:30 PDT