I had 4 nights in Honiara before heading back to PNG. We enjoyed breakfasts and dinners with some of the Choate’s colleagues. The Choates started the process of settling into their town home. We had fun sorting and opening other Christmas boxes that didn’t make it out to the village. We played Hand and Foot. We rearranged furniture. And we made our way into town one day in order to replenish the pantry, go to the market, buy some mementos and gifts for me to take home and have Frangipani Ice.
Frangipani ice is a ice cream place which boasts three locations in Honiara. It is delicious, real ice cream made with local ingredients. They also have a great variety of flavors including but not limited to mint chip, coconut, raspberry, lime, vanilla and chocolate. And it’s very affordable- something like 8 Solomon Island dollars for a scoop which is roughly equivalent to a dollar. What a treat!
Then on the 9th after a wonderful breakfast of coconut pancakes, the Choates took me to the airport. They waited with me after I went through the check-in line and we said our sad good-byes when I finally had to make my way to the gate.
It was sad to leave but I am confident that the Choates will continue their great work with the Lavukal people and now I know better how to pray for the Choates and the people in the Russell Islands. Maybe some day I will get to go back again. But for now I have new friends, great memories, lots of pictures and permanent Aunt Joy status in the Choate household.