Easter IHoly Week I
How's Bayou? Easter you say, I say mada.
To Americans, a big bunny showering old and young with colorful balls and pralines that have nothing to do with the movement of a rock in front of a grave. What about the 6,000 residents of Easter lsland in the South Pacific? At first, the discoverer Jacob Roggeveen thought he had tripped on the mythical Terra Australi when he saw the lonely isle on Easter Sunday 1722.
By 1774 Captain Cook got a stomach pains (obsolete Easter egg was perhaps the only meal he could find on the desert island), the wheather was horrible and the staff was laconical, so he went after only three short workdays. According to the verbal legend, the initial colonists first named their new home Te Pito O Te Henua - the hub of the world, perhaps because there was nothing else to do on the desert archipelago but to look at the bell.
A large round rock is reminiscent of this theory. It was supposedly taken from Polynesia by the first monarch, Hotu Matu'a, surrounded by a mural. Truly uninspired, the name of the inhabitants of their homeland comes only from 1863, when the officers discovered that the three-cornered form of the landmass resembled that of the Greater polynesia- France Rape only.
So it became Rapa Nui (Big Rapa). It is much bigger and more diverse than I had expected; and from the first mai to the last place I visit - the small rock pit from which the softer, redder rock was quarried to make the striking, rust-colored knots that crowd the naked, umberen mai, it was not possible not to feel the vibrant power or sheen of the sheen of the music of the "Living Faces" who live in this pacific paradise.
Each of Thor Heyerdahl, whom our naïve leader repeatedly called "Señor Kon-Tiki", to the point of Japan, America and Rapanui archaeologists, seems to have participated in the excavation, restoration or rebuilding of the fall of mai on extensive rock decks, where the statues pointing inwards across the islands once again commemorate the indigenous people of their polynesia heritages.
In the biggest of the quarries, Rano Raraku, where the highest (12 meters) mai is still on the vulcanic rocks, incomplete sculptures, similar to Siame-twins, are lying next to each other, below and above, in order to use the vulcanic rocks optimally. The IKEA could learn a lesson from these mai in operation, perhaps the world's first cut-out needed for installation.
There are many upstanding, tipped or lying mai on the nearby hillsides, like in a huge open-air Reject China shop, who didn't make the cutting, have fallen down and broken or just decide that they like the look. Then, the mai around the island were overthrown, leaving only one in 1840.
Might there have been a little-known war of mai hairdressers, quarrel among the members of the twelve trunks who have been carving the classy little knot? For the next year, the chief of the clan, whose champ came back with the first ball, was proclaimed king of the isle, which reduced the importance of the mai, established a crude type of democratic rule on the isle and anticipated the roll of Easter balls on the lawn of the game.
At the end of the second half of our trip, Millie had "taken Easter Island, as we say, out of her system". It was then and it was relaxing in a sun lounger, remembering and planning how to party Easter in Madewood this year.