Monday, April 17, 2017

Easter in Gizo

When we were in the Caribbean and Eastern Pacific, there were so many white sand beaches that we really became really blasé about them. I felt I would be just fine if I never saw another white sand beach.

As we traveled further west, the white sand beaches dwindled. The Solomon Islands especially have had very few accessible beaches. So it was a treat to find this gem near Gizo. An island made entirely of sand. The dinghy had barely reached the shore when the boys were out running at full speed. Apparently, they have been a little cooped up.

Gizo is pretty typical for a good-sized Pacific island town. Just about every business along the main drag is a Chinese-owned shop holding various seemingly random items (many made in China, as you would expect). There is usually a Chinese person manning the cash register and a number of locals working in the shop. We have heard that the workers are paid very little and not treated very well. There is a palpable animosity between the Chinese shopkeepers and the local residents. Being Asian, I feel a distinctly different vibe towards me from some of the locals that live in these towns. It contrasts with the friendliness of locals in some of the smaller villages.

PT-109 hosts part of the darts competition.
The Easter tradition in this area is a four-day dart tournament at various venues. 20 teams compete for prizes.

We visited Kennedy island, where John F. Kennedy and his crew swam after PT-109 was destroyed. Speaking of Asians, Kennedy had to convince the locals that he and his crew were American and not Japanese. Apparently, one light-skinned man was the same as the next to the two local men. They couldn't tell the Americans and Japanese apart by looking at them.

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