Thursday, February 1, 2018

Vavau, Tonga

One of the reasons that I joined the Radiance of the Seas cruise that left Sydney on 3rd January, 2018 was that this cruise was a once in a lifetime chance to visit Tonga.  Tonga, featured largely in my childhood, it was a mission outpost and we regularly heard tales of this friendly island in my Sunday School days. Our first port of call in Tonga was Vavau. Settle back sail with me, it is a long post.
Vava'u is a group of more than 50 islands, either coral limestone or coral atolls. The main town of Neiafu (known as the Port of Refuge Harbour) is a common destination for yachties sailing the South Pacific.  The waters are known for their clarity, it being said that you can see the bottom at 40 metres. Lots of places to explore tropical forests, limestone cliffs and caves to explore and traditional villages.  Yep, book a tender from ship to Naiafu in the morning and start exploring.
The Cruise Compass magazine delivered to the cabin the night before had a forecast of cloudy with a chance of rain.  Morning arrived RAIN, RAIN, RAIN.  I was scheduled for Tender 10.
It was hectic, visability was poor, the tenders were late leaving and attempting to navigate those clear waters.   Some people managed to get onto the tenders only to arrive to mud ankle deep. All ship onshore tours were cancelled.  A small tender location with no cover. The Captain took the unusual task of cancelling all tenders.  A quickly rearranged on-board programme was arranged as we waited for those that had disembarked earlier to return.
Us scrapbookers - no problem - to the scrap room and work on projects, chat and enjoy each others company and get to know each other further.  Fun and laughter ensured.
Here I am on the deck - you can see the rain closing in once again over my shoulders.
I felt for the people of this small island - cruise ships have only commenced recently into their port - maybe who knows one day I may once again get the opportunity to pay them a visit.
A few more photos of the weather on the day, taken from the ship, of course:
Of course when I went to scrap this photo of me any of the layouts I created on the cruise were not suitable.  Was it the colours I was wearing!  So into my stash I delved and found papers that I thought were appropriate.  A partial coat of gesso over the middle of the background paper, some Dylusion sprays, fussy cutting some flowers and leaves and of course the bright pink cardstock added the "pop" I wanted.  What do you think?
I have decided to enter this layout (that I did when I returned home) into Soul Scrappers challenge to be inspired by this layout by Melissa Kennedy below - who was the organiser, creator and leader of all the layouts created in classes held whilst on the cruise. Of course, I was inspired by the ship in the photo and the whole cruising experience.  As an aside, Melissa's layout was one that we completed in class when I cruised with her last April it was great to revisit this layout and be further inspired by it.
Until later, Margaret :)

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