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[en]
The exact program of events is not being made public (or at least not yet). However, from what I learnt from Halo, it goes like this:
The aircraft will stop on the runway (i.e. it wonʼt taxi onto the apron) at 1000hrs. The Royal Couple will descend the stairs and step into a “personal mini-maneaba” (traditional thatched house) that has been constructed by PWD. This is going to take the place of the canoe that the Queen used. Thatʼs rather a clever twist on the traditional form of welcome. Full marks to whoever thought that one up.

The mini-maneaba will be lifted by a team of strong young men - apparently a great many, not only so as to share the honour around but also because the structure is very heavy. The Couple will be carried from the plane to the Vaiaku Maneaba; the couple will disembark (or rather ʻdismountʼ) from their mini-maneaba and enter the main maneaba. Then speeches of welcome and all the usual brouhaha.

Then six of the islands (one misses out, for unknown reasons) will put on brief fateleʼs. They are limited to five minutes each! I cannot imagine a five minute fatele. As you know, a single song/dance/drum bashing usually takes longer than five minutes.

Then the couple will go to the Government Offices (I suppose in their mini-maneaba). I donʼt know whatʼs planned there, but perhaps signing of the Visitors Book. QE2 and Prince Philʼs signatures are in there of course. Prime Minsiter Bikenibeu Paeniu showed it to me years ago.

Next they will go to Vaiaki Lagi Hotel, but not inside. They are going to visit the palm tree that Williamʼs mother planted thirty years ago. I have passed that tree thousands of times without knowing its history. It is said that they are going to be served a drinking nut each from that tree. Eti told me that it has been tidied up, so I have just been to the hotel to have a look. Right enough, it has had a coral stone wall put around the base, as has the lime tree right next to it. Do you know the trees I mean? They are right outside the hotel kitchen door.

Then the Couple are going to EKT. I donʼt know why; perhaps to visit the main church. Presumably they will go by car, otherwise the team of bearers is going to be worn out! Then theyʼll continue on up the road to Nauti Primary School and then Princess Margaret Hospital (the new building retained the old name, as you know).

Then on to Edgworth Davidʼs bore hole (often called Darwinʼs Hole, as you know). Apparently the program ends there, although that canʼt be right because there has to be canoe racing. Perhaps thatʼs later in the day. Canoes are coming in from the outer islands (by “Nivaga II”) and community elders are coming too.

In the evening there will be an official dinner at Vaiaku Lagi Hotel but guests will be limited to twelve from each island. Thatʼs scheduled to finish at 2130hrs, which apparently is end of the dayʼs activities. I thought there would be a fatele afterwards but apparently not.

Then the Couple retire to the Defence Force Complex (i.e. what we call the ʻNavy Houseʼ) and they get to sleep in Brendanʼs apartment (brand new mattress however) and the Royal security bods get to sleep in Lurchʼs apartment.
Next morning, at 1000hrs, up, up and away!

The communities are entering into the spirit of it all, of course. Itʼs a very special occasion. The cost is enormous. Imagine how much food thereʼs going to be. There might only be 100 or so at the VLH for the official dinner but there will be feasting all over the place I expect.

Seems like itʼs going to be fun. Of course, it should fun – in FUN.
Best regards, John



14 / 09 / 12 - 12 : 00

[en]
Theyʼll be arriving on the afternoon of 18SEP and leaving the following morning. I understand they are going disembark directly into a canoe, which will be held on the shoulders of many strong lads. Thatʼs the traditional greeting for members of the Royal Family (and other VIPʼs) but this will probably be the first time that it has done at the airport.

On the previous occasions (Prince Philip 1958, Princess Margaret 1978, Queen and Prince Philip 1982) the canoe has met them at the side of the ship. It was planned that they would only stay four hours, because of the lack of adequate accommodation for an overnight stay.

However, the local community were offended by that (rightly so). A compromise was reached when Brendan (Navy commander) offered his quarters. The Palace accepted that. Brendan and one of his staff will be off-island anyway and the remaining guy will move out for the night so the Royal Couple can have the whole compound. A new mattress is coming from Fiji for Brendanʼs bed.

I donʼt suppose theyʼll make much use of it because from what I hear a very special fatele is planned at the maneaba and that is likely to go half way through the night. It was like that when President Rabuka came to Tuvalu for the 20th anniversary celebrations. He was enjoying himself, including joining in the dancing, and Iʼll be the locals are hoping that will happen with the Royal Couple. They might just do it too. It will be a sensation here if they do – very different from the Royal visits of the past.

I think they will be visiting Nauti Primary School. Itʼs a popular venue for important visitors and gives the kids a chance to put on a good show. I understand the community is repainting the outside of all the buildings – no pay, just local pride.
Other than that I donʼt know the programme but I will ask Eti to find out.

Best regards, John



14 / 09 / 12 - 10 : 00

[en]
Today we are having a clean-up morning, and will have a practice afternoon, all for the Royal visit. Same next Friday. What fun (in FUN)! John, Alofa Tuvalu counterpart in Funafuti and APNL Manager

07 / 09 / 12 - 10 : 33

Bonjour,

Le film que nous avons tourné dans lequel apparaît Eliala est sur notre site dans la rubrique reportages. La rencontre avec Eliala était vraiment intéressante.



… On continue à parler du voyage, de l'environnement en citant l'exemple de Tuvalu et à distribuer les BD dans les écoles. Ci-joint quelques photos lors des distributions à Tanna au Vanuatu et aux Louisiades. C'est vrai que pour l'instant ce ne sont pas les gens au mode de vie le plus « polluant » à qui nous remettons les BD mais la vie à l'occidentale les fait un peu rêver et nous pouvons espérer que les BD leur en donneront une image moins idéaliste!





Nous attendons d'autres photos et vous les envoyons quand on les reçoit.

Merci beaucoup,
Cordialement,

Claire et Gaëtan Ozenne
Association "au fil des milles"

09 / 07 / 12 - 12 : 31

Voici une affaire qui nous concerne tous, SANS EXCEPTION !

La sortie en salle du film : http://www.severn-lefilm.com/"Nos enfants nous accuseront"

Pour que ce film soit en salle (film qui dénonce les méfaits de la mauvaise alimentation et des pesticides), il faut qu'un maximum de personnes regardent la bande annonce dans les 2 jours qui suivent. C'est le nombre de visites dans les 2 jours qui fera emporter la décision de sa mise en distribution grandes salles. Faites le suivre rapidement, s'il vous plaît, à tous vos contacts, merci par avance. Voici la bande annonce à visionner et à transmettre.

Pour que Monsanto & Consorts ne soient pas leur futur...

Nous recommandons également "Severn, la voix de nos enfants" du même réalisateur, qui présente des alternatives, tout en nous faisant voyager (dans notre siège). Canada, Japon, Charentes, Corse.

Merci pour eux !..

03 / 07 / 12 - 09 : 58

02 / 07 / 12 - 11 : 07




19 / 06 / 12 - 09 : 38

[en]















07 / 06 / 12 - 18 : 54

A quelques jours du départ de sa délégation au Sommet des Nations Unies sur le Développement Durable de Rio, l’Association 4D publie avec l’Institut de l’Energie et de l’Environnement de la Francophonie (IEPF), une note de décryptage sur les enjeux de la conférence internationale.

La note de décryptage est disponible sur le site de 4D :
Note de décryptage

07 / 06 / 12 - 13 : 07

(voir Français plus bas)

Talofa !

The 1st edition of the "Tuvalu King Tides festival" -Tuvalu E! The Tide is High!*- took place in Funafuti-TUVALU, from Feb 26th to March 1st, 2010.


During 2 days, traditional competitions and demonstrations have shown some aspects of Tuvaluan Culture through sports, handicrafts, dancing, singing, food and Tuvalu’s unique talent in improvised story-telling and dramas. The objective was to raise awareness about what will be lost if the nation of Tuvalu was to disappear. Parallel awareness activities on climate targeted both children and adults, focusing on what we all can do to try to turn the tide.

A few overseas TV documented the event and a multi-camera shooting was put together by Alofa Tuvalu. This was edited in Paris into two 52 min plus a 30 min Fatele that were handed out to many concerned Tuvaluans and screened to an audience in December 2011.

Returning from our 2011/2012 visit, the videos were cut again to fit the You Tube format and are now posted on the Alofa Tuvalu channel

Fetaui

*This first edition was made possible by the unified efforts of many Government ministries and NGO's. It is part of The "Small is Beautiful" (SIB) plan, one of UNESCO's Decade of Education for Sustainable Development Remarkable Actions, launched with, as a primary objective, the preservation of Tuvalu's cultural heritage and identity.

Talofa !

La 1ère edition du Festival des Grandes Marées -Tuvalu E! The Tide is High!*- s’est déroulée à Funafuti-TUVALU, du 26 février au 1er Mars, 2010.


Pendant deux jours, différents aspects de la culture Tuvaluenne ont été exposés au travers de compétitions traditionnelles et de démonstrations: sports, danses, chants, nourriture, et expression du talent unique des tuvaluens pour l’improvisation de récits et le théâtre.
L’objectif était d’amplifiier la prise de conscience de ce qui est menacé, si la nation de Tuvalu disparaissait. En parallèle, des activités sur le climat ciblaient petits et grands focalisant sur ce que nous pouvons tous faire pour inverser la tendance.

Quelques télévisions étrangères ont couvert l’événement. Alofa Tuvalu a organisé une captation à plusieurs cameras. 2 segments d’une heure et 30 min de fatele ont été montés. Ces videos furent remises aux Tuvaluens impliqués et diffusés publiquement en Décembre 2011.

Au retour de la mission 2011/2012, les videos furent remontées en 10 activités et postées sur la
chaîne You Tube d'Alofa Tuvalu.

Fetaui

*Cette première édition a été rendue possible par les efforts combinés de nombreux Ministères tuvaluens et associations. Elle fait partie du plan “Small is Beautiful”, l’une des actions remarquables de la Décennie de l’Education au Développement Durable de l’Unesco, lancé avec pour objectif premier la préservation de l’héritage culturel et de l’identité de Tuvalu.

04 / 06 / 12 - 15 : 50






09 / 05 / 12 - 10 : 48

Samedi, Cyril Josset, Secrétaire Général d’Alofa Tuvalu, était invité par Tine, l’Ambassadeur de Tuvalu à Bruxelles et son épouse Lilian, à participer à une après-midi de collecte de fonds en faveur des victimes des inondations dévastatrices à Fidji.

Au retour Cyril écrit : “ Chères Amies, ce fut d’abord un spectacle de danse très agréable à voir, un peu dans le style des danses hawaïennes et tahitiennes puis une dégustation de mets locaux…, je crois bien que c’est la première fois que j’ai mangé du tapioca, et peut-être aussi la dernière !!! Au final, € 8000 ont été récoltés pour FIDJI…”


08 / 05 / 12 - 18 : 00

We just returned from the neighbourhood yardsale. From a very early hour of the morning it is not my type .. mainly on Sunday. It was also very cold in the shade but the day was nice. Since last year we do a Tuvalu small exhibit and distribute comic books. Today we even gave a few spanish and german versions. We are also taking the opportunity to give away stuff stored in the garage for years and that I‘m unable to throw... I hardly throw anything and preferred for example, to move from my last apartment stupid stuff like "snow glass balls" from everywhere in the world without water anymore in them :). Almost everything at home is recycled or composted or… reused... It was very pleasing that our "trash" can be of use to others and very rewarding to see children putting their nose into the Comic.

Fanny yesterday was at another event, a "book market" this time with an educational network. A long week end.

Tuesday we are also participating to a conference about The next Earth Summit, 40 years after the 1st one in Stockholm. To show my pessimistic view about these meetings (like the “day of this” or that, there are several international meetings each DAY now), rather than blablabing, I'll show one of Laure satirical/cynical chronicles, about the last Durban Climate Meeting . It is 1mn and although in French, some of you might get it. She does these regularly now on internet. I love it but no TV would take it. Too scary for TV management, still questioning whether humans is doing anything wrong to the environment.

The invitation for the conference says that we are going to show exclusive pictures from Tuvalu. I was at first thinking to play the 2006 king tides pictures 4mn clip. Some extracts have been seen before but never as a clip. Finally last night I decided to quickly edit our Funafuti young neighbours singing “I wish you a merry Xmas” under our balcony and will probably announce our next documentary with children.

G

07 / 05 / 12 - 18 : 00




29 / 04 / 12 - 08 : 58






28 / 04 / 12 - 18 : 00

[en]
“Commemorating the life and loss of Herbert George Hensford”, by John Hensford, Alpha Pacific Navigation General Manager and Alofa Tuvalu counterpart in Tuvalu.

On Saturday April 14th we’ll mark the centenary of the foundering of “Titanic”, in which my uncle was a crewmember. Poor Uncle Herbert, only 28 years old and married only a few weeks before he joined the ship! If I have my facts right the ship sank at 0220 hours, which will be 1720 hours here. We’ll mark that moment with a minute’s silence followed by a toast.

I’ll bet there’s no other crewmember of “Titanic” who is having a commemoration attended by the Prime Minister ; the Deputy Prime Minister & Minister for Communications, Transport & Public Utilities; the Minister for Finance; the Minister for Health; and the Secretary to Government (head of the Civil Service).

The only reason for non-attendance of the Governor General; the Speaker of Parliament; the Minister for Education, Youth & Sport; the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Environment, Trade, Labour and Tourism; and the Minister for Home Affairs is that they are off-island at present. They will be disappointed to have missed it as they are all friends to me and my work colleague. Anyway, to have acceptances from the PM, the Deputy PM and two other Ministers and the head of the civil service is a pretty big score. They’re all friends to us too.

I originally had in mind a modest function with just work colleagues and a few others but it has ‘grown’. We used to have a reputation for great parties with tasty food and lively entertainment but we haven’t had one for years now because of the economic problems impacting the shipping industry. So when news got out about our party lots of people were stopping my colleague in the street and asking if they could come too. How could he say no?

I’ve just been to our local shops to see what ‘goodies’ they could supply us. Quite a good selection, including T-bone steak, which I have never seen here before, and Brussels sprouts (joy oh joy, my favourite vegetable) which I also have never seen here before. We’ve got people working on special local coconut dishes. I’ve got shellfish in my freezer that were gathered from the reef last week by my neighbours. An Australian couple are making a confectionery dish of some sort that was mentioned on the “Titanic” first class menu. We have a South African yachting couple passing through and the wife makes absolutely the best black bread I have ever tasted (if she brings some I might hide it). Most important of all we’ve got a boat outside the reef tuna fishing and another one on the lagoon with crack spearfishermen chasing reef fish (rainbow runners, red emperor, or dozens other varieties) and a team is going out on the reef after dark tonight to catch lobsters (easy to cook, two minutes in steam). We won’t end up with the exotic fare that the first class passengers of “Titanic” enjoyed but it will better tucker than the crew had.

We have a few ministers of the other kind also coming – at least one from the Tuvalu Church (basically Congregational), one from the Catholic Church and two young guys from Latter Day Saints. I expect the senior of them (probably the one from Tuvalu Church) will offer a prayer though I haven’t arranged it. At the very least one will say grace before the meal (as is always done here).

We have a guitar trio coming too – all of them seafarers, and one of them quite famous in Tuvalu and Fiji for his jazzy local songs, of which some have been recorded. We were going to have just two guitarists, and they were lamenting that the third member was still in Fiji on his way home from a ship. I kept quiet because I knew he was going to arrive yesterday. The arrival of the plane is always an interesting event that attracts many people who just come to see who is arriving and who is departing. So the two guys were there, and when they saw the third guy step off the plane they were whooping with joy and surprise.

I’ll be making a short speech of course, telling the guests who Herbert was and what little I know of his short life. I’ll be mentioning the other family members who were/are seafarers. That’s particularly relevant here because there are so many families who have seafarers – in fact an even higher proportion than Southampton. We’ve had some seafaring tragedies during my fourteen years in Tuvalu. Two young men were swept overboard from a containership in heavy weather; one kept afloat for an hour and was recovered by the ship’s rescue boat, the other was never seen again. Also a particularly messy and inexplicable collision between two ships in which three seafarers died. So there will be people here who will relate to the Herbert story.

I’ve printed a family tree and pinned it up on my wall and I have circled the seafarers, including Will, Alexa, Michael (Alexa’s husband) and myself. I also put a little note on the chart that Frank Hensford’s wife Louisa Jane Reeves (1853-1908) was born at sea on a sailing ship, of which her father was master. Pity it wasn’t feasible to include my wife Wendy’s family too as her fourth great grandfather was a captain, from Penzance, Cornwall.

I think it’s going to be a memorable event. I have the feeling that the guests won’t want to leave at the official ending time of 1830. All our neighbours are invited too, so nobody is going to make any complaint if we’re a bit noisy.

So that’s my little way of commemorating the life and loss of Herbert George Hensford. It’s far away from Herbert’s last resting place, in fact just about as far on Earth as it’s possible to be. The setting is very fitting though.

The event will be held on our office lawn which is right by the lagoon (literally one step and you’re either in the lagoon (if the tide his high) or on the beach (if the tide is low). So far the weather looks favourable. Last week we had strong winds across the lagoon and torrential rain, and couldn’t have used our office lawn.

Today, as I look out of my office window, the palms are swaying gently and the lagoon is calm and turquoise.

I reckon Uncle Bert would be pleased.

Here comes a follow-up report:

The afternoon tea in Tuvalu for "Titanic" was a great success.

Everyone in Tuvalu is involved with seafaring - some as actual seafarers, some as family members of seafarers, and some as beneficiaries of income from seafaring. So when I told them the story of my Uncle Herbert George Hensford my guests were very interested.

I mentioned the fact that the road in which my uncle lived lost 8 seafarers that day. No other street had that unenviable score. I had only come across that fact hours earlier in a BBC News item that my schoolfriend drew to my attention.

Something went wrong with the arrangement for lobsters. Either the catchers were unsuccessful or the delights of bed discouraged them going out. However, our spearfishermen not only brought home a dozen beautiful fish (all different varieties) but also freedived to the lagoon bed and brought up two giant clams. The meat from each was the size of a dinner plate and 15mm thick. That was well received by everyone, myself included. The fish arrived after the first guests had arrived, went straight on the barbecue and then to the table.

The band was just fabulous. I'm not a fan of loud music but our guys managed good amplification without shaking the building. As expected, the function did not finish at the nominal 1830 that I put on the invitations.
People just didn't want to go and I was happy they didn't. Even the Prime Minister and his wife stayed well into the evening. I take that as quite a compliment.

I farewelled the last guests at midnight and decided to go for a refreshing swim (from the beach right in front of my office). I nearly said 'cooling swim' but with our high water temperature here 'refreshing' is more accurate. It probably wasn't such a smart idea to go swimming at that time of night with
a tummy full of nice food and 'appropriate refreshments' (for which read 'wine'). Nevertheless I came to no harm and, after a nice shower to get rid of the salt water and sand, rolled into bed feeling pretty satisfied with the day.

My work colleagues had done all the washing up before going home the previous evening, and they had plenty of helpers. Even the PM's wife asked if she could help but of course my colleagues wouldn't hear of it. That would definitely not have been proper protocol. It would have been rather like asking Pearl Wakeford to roll up her sleeves.

If anyone is wondering why the event was held on 14 April, not 15th – well, to be quite truthful I had been relying on my memory of the date of the sinking. My memory never was the best and is probably worse now because of the anno domini effect. However, even though I had a lingering doubt that I had the date wrong I plead ‘artistic licence’, or some such. Historical accuracy would have had to give way to expediency anyway. If I’d had the function on Sunday it would have had to be either a memorial service (which I didn’t want) or I would have had to keep it very low key. Certainly no politicians or community elders could have been invited. I think there is no law that prevents functions on Sundays but it is just ‘not done’ in this ultra Christian country. Sunday is for church and rest. Afternoon naps are the nom.

Well that’s it for another hundred years. Don’t think I’ll plan for that.

Bye for now, John

14 / 04 / 12 - 18 : 00

On Wednesday, April 4th Kaio, a Tuvaluan seafarer and Alofa Tuvalu active member organized a workshop with the trainees onboard MV Nivaga II - one of the two Tuvalu interislands vessels - on the topic “Seafarer and Climate Change”. He was the best student at TMTI when he graduated two years ago. Kaio is the first youth Chris and Gilliane met when shooting “Trouble in Paradise” in 2003. Since then he has been part of every Alofa Tuvalu local activities. He lately acted as Alofa Tuvalu facilitator for the biogas in Nanumea project. No sooner was he back on Funafuti and a few days only before leaving the country for over a year on a cargo, Kaio made a point setting up this workshop to raise trainees awareness about ship and seafarers’ contribution to climate change and daily habits on a ship.

The program:

7 pm - Evening Devotion
7.15 pm – Introduction (by John, Alpha Pacific Navigation General Manager and Alofa Tuvalu counterpart in Tuvalu)
7.30 pm - Seafarer and their contribution to Climate Change (Kaio)
7.50 pm - Screening of King Tides Festival video (2x52 min edited by Gilliane, Alofa Tuvalu President about the 2010 Kind Tides Festival activities)
8.40pm - Filling up of evaluation forms
Refreshments
Wrap up and Closing prayer

At night Kaio wrote : “The workshop was a success. John –- did the opening speech and he also presented on MARPOL regulations. Melton – Alofa Tuvalu General Secretary - also asked for an opportunity to present, i did try and fit him in the program, unfortunately he did not attend. I covered up and we finished at 2050hrs."

John added : “I was very impressed with the organization of the workshop, and that Kaio was able to convince all the trainees of “Nivaga II” to attend. They were very attentive. I would say it was a worthwhile workshop.”

06 / 04 / 12 - 12 : 20



28 / 03 / 12 - 11 : 25

Ce qui se passe au Brésil est à vomir. Jusqu'où sont-"ils", sommes-nous, capables d’aller ? 30000 personnes, Presque 3 fois la population de Tuvalu ! Une goutte d’eau dans l’océan de l’humanité, nous savons, mais nous avons signé. Et vous ?

Pétition contre le barrage de Belo Monte

26 / 03 / 12 - 06 : 00

[en]
Talofa, Bonjour,Hello and Bula vinaka to you all… i have just arrived in today from Nanumea. Here is a small report of all the activities that i did whilsts stranded for four days on Nanumea Island.

I arrived Nanumea on Sunday the 18th of March 2012 at 0900hrs.Since it was a Sunday, no work could be done....so i rested at one of my friends house and spend the whole day there. On Monday morning i visited the Kaupule and asked them permission for me to continue whatever that is left to be done, the secretary gave me permission and i went ahead and visited the bio-digesters. As per our report that one out of the four units is not working... now it is working as well and the family (Tumau) is also using the bio-gas for cooking. As i visited the families, i notice that the gardens were already been done but the fence for the gardens were local coconut leaves... a very wise idea but pigs are everywhere and they(pigs) can easily tear the coconut leaves down. I asked them if the Kaupule have distributed the chicken wire which the project has provided and they replied "NO".... i wasn't so surprised.

Apart from that everything on Nanumea Island is running smooth and sound and i think the Nanumea Bio-Gas project is a success and it will be successful on the long run

The ladies in Nanumea said that they really miss you alot.....Sikeli i have send your regards and as a matter of fact i did some dedication on the radio. Speaking of the radio, Gilliane i did the interview by myself with the radio team and it is all in tuvaluan... if you still need a copied version i would love to go and ask for it.

I will email other informations later as i am really into a cold shower than dose off in bed. It is still morning but i really need to sleep.

Hugs,

Kaio

26 / 03 / 12 - 04 : 00


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