What was going through your mind when you came out of your house and saw what things looked like?
I don’t know. I don’t know how to explain, but when I looked … I think that maybe people are going to die because no more everything. No more breadfruit, no more bananas … and three days after, we go to see our potato gardens, all … I don’t know, because of the wind. Some of the taro plants, some are … I don’t know how to call … dying, because of the wind. It’s good too, because … we just left them and then start to grow. We don’t pull them up, we just clean, and they start to … And everything we do is … Heather who was here and some of us, we go and work with the bananas, cut down the rest that are broken so that the new ones will have space to come up.
Was there enough food for everybody, the first few days after the typhoon before relief came?
Yeah. Maybe … almost one week because of the broken bananas. After that, we go and start cleaning, go through the fallen trees and everybody have a banana, we go and cut and we … Because that’s what people ate after the typhoon for the few days before those …
What about the fish? Did the men go to the reefs?
Fish? No. No more fish.
They were gone?
No, I don’t know, but nobody go fishing after that. The problem is nobody has the time. Maybe people are very … shocked about what is … Work, work, work until the sun goes down, then that’s the time people rest.
No, I will not leave my island (laughs), ’cause a lot of typhoon came, and we’re still here alive, so … I don’t think we’re going to die. Hopefully we’ll keep on helping each other. After the typhoon, we help each other start planting food, our own food. Banana, papaya … Because we learn from the old people that after the typhoon, everything grows fast. Just the next day, day one and day two, that’s what we will do. When we have time, one or two, we plant some potato and we planted one or two extra banana.
Are you hopeful? Do you have hope?
Yeah (laughs). Because I thought, maybe those people who didn’t see what I was talking about, because that’s what people … My people are generous people. This is what we do after the typhoon. Now we didn’t follow, but before, after the typhoon, they’ll call everybody, all the people, the chief call everybody. Everybody will go to their land, start picking copra. ‘Cause later on, there will be no copra.
Comments by sara cannon