Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A Night of feasting & dancing at Ekasup

By Charlie Sikal, media student attachee: On Friday last week, I was joined by over 30 tourists to go to Ekasup cultural village for a spectacular Melaneisan Feast including witnessing great cultural dancing and performances by the local bamboo band.
I was picked up downstairs at the Visitor Info Centre and in a few minutes arrived at the village entrance. We were by a village warrior blowing the conch shell to signal the others that we’ve arrived. It was getting darker as we were  escorted through the jungle, just a few minutes walk before meeting the chief and his villagers. 
When we arrived at the village entrance, there were more warriors running in from different directions shouting in their local dialects as if to warn us off “this is my village! Where are you coming from”, that sort. Holding bamboo torches and running to us with flames reflected on their faces gave a slightly frightful look but thank goodness, the village chief stepped in front of them and made a response to the warriors. I could tell he was the chief because he was wearing a necklace with a huge pigs tusk on it, plus he stood and responded with a strong bold voice. He looked very brave. Almost automatically, the warriors stepped back with their spears and torches, whilst the chief welcomed us into his Nasara or village. We were then led to the village meeting place, sat down and got ready to party the island way, under a gigantic banyan tree. I’ve never been at Ekasup before so to me, the environment and its surrounding was different, unique and so refreshing, a special experience I thoroughly enjoyed which started with kava tasting, that totally mellowed me out, followed by beautiful sounds from the local band and the island feast, was equally fantastic and delicious. The whole 2 hours there, I could see that the guests were having a wonderful time, learning about the history of the islands told by the chief of course, trying their lips and vocals to traditional songs, and mellowing out to the kava effect, well a few did but most were just happy going with the delicious island food and drinks, and enjoying the pleasant entertainment which even made them get up and dance. 
It was a wonderful night for us all and I would like to thank Mr Honore Noaida and his team at Nafonu Tatoka Tours, for inviting me whilst at the same time congratulate Nafonu Tatoka for a great product which no doubt, will make guests never forget what truly matters in Vanuatu. Bigfala tankiu lo yufala!