Saturday, May 15, 2010

Talking Tahitian

Yes, that's what they do. We were quite interested to learn that the local inhabitants speak Tahitian, a language indigenous to the Society Islands, although somewhat related to the Rarotongan, New Zealand Māori, and Hawaiian languages. An obvious example to us non-linguists is that every word ends in a vowel.

So we learned to greet someone with a hello by saying ia ora na, which is pronounced almost like Your Anna, and saying thanks with an impressive mauruuru.

The people we encountered were universally friendly and kind, whether of French origin, such as the wonderful Cannes-born Barbara at the Hilton front desk who managed to find us an overwater bungalow for five nights, or the true local Tahitians.

Of course, when you're living on a gorgeous island like Moorea, there's no reason not to be cheerful and friendly, despite some of the cost of living.

Incidentally, many of our fellow air passengers again checked large amounts of luggage and coolers, which they fill to take advantage of the "bargain prices" in Honolulu. We've already mentioned that to a couple of folks here, making them chuckle, since they're not used to the words "bargains" and "Honolulu" ever being used together.

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