Saturday, October 29, 2011

School Camp October 2011...

I have just spent a wonderful week in Mauke on Year 7/8 school camp! Wow, we certainly have a beautiful backyard! Only an hour from Rarotonga we fly over for a week to experience another part of the Cook Island culture.  There is approximately 300 people currently living on Mauke and they are the friendliest most giving community.  We were well feed and cared for for the whole week we were there. The feast that they put on for us, their visitors showed how much they loved having us visit.  I think I have come back a couple of kg's heavier! Tables were laden with taro, chicken, pork, coconut crabs, Otu pancakes, salads and desserts. There was such a selection it was hard to try everything; but I gave it a dam good try!

Mauke: Runway to the left where the white line is!

Arrival at Mauke
Luggage claim
My kitchen for the week...

Divided Church

A deserted house I fell in love with...

One of the few stores and the new takeaway bar...
The shop I am sure doubled it's weeks takings while we were there.  Our kids seemed to have an endless supply of money.  Sadly though, due to a small number of kids ordering burgers and chips right before dinner time, they ended up being 'banned' from the shops. 

There was a cave ten minute walk from were we stayed that was great for swimming and once the kids found it they didn't want to leave...
Swimming cave that the kids loved, I was not so keen to
jump with a bikini on!
Mauke has no dogs and no cats, we did however see a couple of cats lurking around.  There are plenty of chickens and wild pigs.  We had a piglet come into the hall on the first night.  I heard him at the open door I was sleeping next to but thought 'if I keep my eyes shut and don't move he will disappear!'
This old cock had the shortest legs and his tummy looked like a dress...

Mauke School children welcoming us...

Arrival at the school we were welcomed so very warmly!
 Tuesday night we went on a sleep out camp with the Boy Scouts and the Girl Guides.
Camp ~ Second night
The girls sleeping quarters for the Scout and Guides sleep out night.
I had the closest right hand corner (and a rock in the back).

The conveniences!
I am unsure as to how many girls did not use the loo for the eight hours we were away from our 'home' (the hall).  But they sure did appreciate the facilities a lot more when we arrived back!
Looking up into the camp

Mama's uploading the Umu food...
Possible future umu food?! Maybe it was one of these that came to
visit us at the hall on our first night?
Bonn Fire the kids had a blast!

Morning bath!

Gospel Day march to church
Thursday we went on a short walk, just under 5 kilometers, across the island. It was fascinating to see the changes in land scape. Mauke is a garden island, extremely verdant and fertile.  However, there is very little area for planting and the outer areas of the land are made up of fossilised coral reef – 'makatea'. There is no water catchment needed as Mauke has its water pumped up from deep springs below, using solar powered energy.  The water tastes fabulous!
The highest point on the island is in the distance, 30 meters above sea-level.
The water tanks are then, I believe 12 meters up from that.
Out on a walk...
Thursday's Umu lunch stop!
After lunch we went on a tour of the island.  Clem, our tour guide was not only very knowledgeable about his island but also very funny.
Clem teaching a 'bush instrument'... I got pretty good at it!

View from a cliff top we visited on our tour.

Farewell dances...

The flight out...
Mauke is incredibly quiet and you do notice after arriving back to Rarotonga the hustle and bustle noises of the larger island.  I was very lucky to have been able to join the senior kids on there camp and I intend on taking the family to Mauke for a holiday!
Leaving the Airport


  1. Its so wonderful to read your travel and experience you and your family enjoyed on the island of Mauke, also knowm as Akatokamanava.

  2. Such a beautiful place with beautiful people, will be forever in my heart! An amazing experience. X