Monday, January 01, 2007

A Fijian New Year's Eve in Melbourne

from w
Sunday evening we drove up to Melbourne to join in with many Fiji migrant families at Coburg Uniting Church for the Fijian vakatawase (New Year) celebration. The leader was Rev Tepole Raicebe.

This involved a two hour church service with a few preachers - including Peceli, some singing, and my bit was a passionate (political) prayer. By midnight there was a bit a noise outside on Bell Street (but not the deserted Pentridge Gaol next door) and we adjoined to the hall for a delicious supper of roti, curry, cakes, watermelon etc. etc. The guys of course made the usual yaqona circle.

I sat along a wall on the pandanus mats with some of the women in their muumuus or dresses and long sulus.

It was a lovely time to catch up with people and tell stories. Our New Year celebration was subdued however, compared with other years as no-one has brought a guitar and no-one doused us with powder. We got home to Geelong by 4 a.m. and it took me all of yesterday to recover!


Blogger Alison said...

I love this one - very Gaughan - gives a great feel of female conversation and intimacy.

8:22 PM  
Blogger Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Gauguin? I wish! Yeah I guess it's the intimacy of bodies close together, women talking to one another, eating with plates of food on laps.
The first time I saw a real Gauguin exhibition was in Canberra and they certainly were gorgeous paintings but smaller and not as bright as I expected. Somehow plates in books were deceptive, too highly coloured and gave no indication of the real scale.

8:28 PM  

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