Tonga Tonga Art
The desire to learn a new skill never stops and this took me on an unexpected journey into the world of cake sculpture. I thought I would apply some of my skills to film and sculpture and try edible art. But I kept making the same old cakes, cakes of different shapes and sizes, and the desire to learn new skills never stopped.
I made life-size ballet shoes on ice, topped with five-tier cakes and propped up by Hayley Egan. So far I have baked a vampire-inspired cake, an ice cream cake (which was definitely judged at the time) and a cake that has the same shape and size as the vampire.
Hayley has chosen to focus on Tongan themes inspired by her own experiences as a child. In particular, a painting of a Tonga dancer is described, which is from the child's point of view, and uses extracts from larger pictures to capture this feeling.
Tu Tonga is both human and divine, and embodies the Tongan people, and that is still a powerful metaphor. In 1875, the first king of modern Tonga introduced a constitution to unite the four island groups. The constitution prescribed a cabinet of twenty members, representing thirty-three nobles, elected as representatives of the people. Ten cabinet members were appointed by the Prime Minister, who was also the Governor of Tongatapu, and a further twelve by the King.
British, New Zealand and Australian governments and development organisations associated with them act as active aid agencies such as the United Nations, UNICEF, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
The tourism industry is growing and the revenue from the Tongan's foreign operations is one of the biggest sources of income for the Tongan government and the New Zealand government.
On an island that is more punctual than in the northern hemisphere, stress is a way of life - free and relaxed schedules are a way of life. True, some of life's most important events are celebrated with lavish ceremonies that last weeks, but nowadays it's basically free. The men who prepare the umu (roast) for the big feast are not eaten as guests, they are only allowed in when the first round is over. You will miss the kava party and better forget the time of yesteryear, or you will be left out.
Tomorrow the New York Stock Exchange opens, but you have to live in the first, so live first and live long.
Friendly behaviour on the "South Sea Islands," as Captain Cook called them, and most visitors to the South Sea island have departed. I was diving in the morning and a few members of our science team saw two octopuses just a few metres away.
The rope they make is one of the Tongan crafts and is used as a decoration at home, but it is an important part of their culture. Like a belt, the ta ovala is wrapped around a rope made of braided coconut shells, and they wear it as a badge of honor.
The birth of a child is the most important event, but the official social introduction of the child into the community is celebrated only at the end of the first year of life. The most important secular holiday is the king's birthday on July 4 and the great religious holiday on May 1.
The infants are breastfed and the boys are born and taken to school, while the older children are raised and schooled at the same time as their younger siblings.
The islands are perfect for charter yachts and sailors, and there are a few small resorts on many of the islands that offer visitors a true Robinson Crusoe island experience. Swimming with the whales is an incredible experience and tourists who somehow find themselves in Tonga can take a course on whales.
Freedom is not fun when someone is there with a gun, and they do not have weapons in this small haven of crime and punishment. The police officers on every corner provide a sense of security, as evidenced by the large number of police cars on the streets of Tonga, where officers are rarely seen.
Sometimes it feels as if the Tongans know that the rest of the world is in the dark, and sometimes Africa is their place of residence. There are even a few stories about people who send mail and freight from the US to Tonga but have no idea whether they have landed in Africa or not. Africa is sometimes the destination of choice for people who send mail or freight to Tonga.
I don't mean flying critters, but the closer you get to Tonga, the more confusion and disorder you see, and the fewer things are done and problems solved and just disappear. I find it difficult not to break the rules, whether in writing or not, for fear of being arrested by uniformed officers. But I'm sure I'll have to find out for myself when I get closer because I'm from Tonga.