It's been almost 2 weeks now that we arrived in Penrhyn. I have been sick almost the whole time, I still have not recovered fully. That's why I have not posted. Nothing really has happened, I have hardly left the boat. Actually only to go to church and to see the nurse - and one evening at the house of the principal of the school.
Once you observe the life here a little bit and talk to some people you find out that this is the world in small. My dream of the happy paradise where all people are friends and help each other is ruined for ever. Even a small place like this - or maybe because it is a small place - has to live with family bonds, family fights, group building, hatred and love, stealing, alcohol, smoking, people closely observing what the others are doing to see if they find fault behaviours the can accuse a person of and even report to the police officer and so on. It makes my heart very sad. Also I learned that despite the people being nice they are very demanding. Demanding towards foreigners like sailors and external people like the principal, government officials, the Kiwi guy who runs the Internet & Mobile phone tower but also demanding towards each other. There are people who will be careful with what they have and try to use their food and daily needs wisely so that they have enough between cargo ship deliveries and others who use up without thinking and then run into other peoples houses trying to get stuff off them. This whole concept seems a bit weird to me. No wonder that most foreigners - in this case workers from outside - leave this place as soon as they can. Especially the women run away and return to their home (Rarotonga or New Zealand) pretty quick.
In church they sing together - 14 adults and 10 kids - in a beautiful church that is over 100 years old and could hold about 200 people - and the „pastor" talks about the love of god and loving each other but the people go out and don't talk to each other and swear and do the usual gossip about each other. Disillusioning.
I might be writing more about my experience here once we're on the way to Christmas Island.
The nicest thing Penrhyn has to offer are the nurses (one on each side), this incredible blue water full of sharks and the snorkelling in the cut.
Tomorrow Marcus and I are going to be taken to the main town on the other side so that we can test people's reading eyesight and hand out correct glasses if necessary and available in the required strength.