Welcome to the Maunie of Ardwall blog

This is the blog of Maunie of Ardwall. After a six-year adventure sailing from Dartmouth to Australia, we are now back in Britain.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Chief Bong Welcomes You

This is High Chief Bong on Fanla village on Ambrym. He's in traditional dress for the dance festival we attended on Friday – note the nambas (penis sheath) and the pig tusks (which show he's a very important man). He must be in his late 70's but led a team of men through some very energetic and long dances with no apparent signs of tiring.
The festival nearly didn't happen this year as the Chief was concerned that the number of young men leaving the village for the brighter lights of Port Vila and Luganville meant he was struggling to have enough dancers who knew the traditional steps. The village is pretty small – 33 houses and about 180 people – so he managed to import a few extra dancers from neighbouring villages. Overall it was a good event, which included a tour of the village for the 24 yachties who attended.
Unfortunately we are in a very poor area for internet again so we'll post more photos and, hopefully, some short videos, when we move.
We're planning to stay in the anchorage here in Ambrym for a couple more days. There's some good walking to be had and, of course, there are boat maintenance jobs to be done. Graham successfully rebuilt the watermaker with parts that were sent to Port Vila from Italy so the water leak has been sorted but now we have a problem with our generator which refuses to start. Having spent several hours working through the system he thinks that the fuel cut-off solenoid is faulty so, thanks to some Google work by his dad in Scotland, emails have been sent to the makers to see if there is a 'work-around'. If not, we'll just have to run the engine to boost the batteries if the solar panels don't see enough sun.

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