No Turkeys in Tonga!

Vava’u Tonga,

It’s an odd feeling to be in a place where the holidays you grew up with are not celebrated – or even recognized for that matter.  Also, the cruising world being what time becomes more…fluid, which is not made less complicated from the occasional forays over international date lines.  Short of it is the below conversation has actually occurred more than once:

Tiffany: Greg, what month is it?

Greg: Very funny.

Tiffany: No, seriously, what month is it?

Greg: uh……

Hey look, the weather’s consistently the same and for all intents and purposes we’ve been in “summer” ever since we left Mexico.  So, it can be confusing.  Keeping track of the month can be difficult enough so individual days we’ve pretty much all given up on.  The massive restrictions on Tongan business on Sundays are actually helpful because we all know which day Sunday is at least.

Also, there’s no Tonga Turkeys that we could find but we muddled through with a bit of island flair


In Tonga (and we’re told thought the South Pacific) they cook and serve the skin of the pig and serve it with fat calling it “cracklings”

If that doesn’t look too appetizing to you…well then it looks like it tastes.  Rest of the pig was fantastic though.

And it’s an island, so the seafood was in abundance

Sorry everyone, we weren’t quite that brave…or hungry enough to eat that much squid.

Crabs and Tongan beer though?  Now that’s another matter:

At this point Greg has a moral obligation as the child of a Baltimorean to say “but they weren’t as good as Maryland blue crabs.”

He’d be lying, cuz by the looks of it they were, but his mother doesn’t need to know that 😉

Often when people find out how long we’ve been traveling one of the first things they ask is “do you miss anything from home?”  With one major exception the answer to that is pretty much no.  Sure video games and a few more spare changes of underwear would be nice but we wouldn’t say we miss them.  You figure out pretty quick out here how little of your possessions are actually “essential” and how much of it is not only completely replaceable, it’s actually disposable.

The one exception to this is our friends and family.  This Thanksgiving we like to give thanks for you because you are each uniquely special to us and completely irreplaceable.  Thanks for being a part of our lives.  We miss you all so very much.


(which is of course why you should come visit us!!)


Ever wonder what they eat it Tahiti?  Click here “Haven’t had a pig roast yet


About the authors

Greg and Tiffany are traveling around the world on sailing yachts and keep a video blog of their (mis)adventures.  If sailing to Tahiti on a 44 ft sailboat, getting pooped on by seagulls, opening coconuts with dull machetes, sailing past tornadoes and ukulele Christmas carols are for you, then check them out at!


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2 Responses to No Turkeys in Tonga!

  1. Father Larry Hendel says:

    Dear Greg and Tiffany, I had some time tonight to cath up and read your blog. It must be strange to be someplace that doesn’t recognize a holiday like Thanksgiving, no turkey, no stuffing, no cranberry sauce, oh my! Your Thanksgiving message is appropriate, felt the same way when I was in Kosovo in 2005, but we did celebrate Thanksgiving. BTW: the pictures and story lines are great. What fantastic islands, Niue and Tonga. I will try to keep up, reading your blog as you make posts when internet is available. Thinking of you both from landlocked San Jose.
    Love and prayers, Fr. Larry

    • Greg says:


      Did you just compare us with your Kosovo trip? I would think you had things a bit tougher than we do.

      On that note, happy belated veterans day. Having a badass chaplain as the family priest is always a big plus in our book. 😉

      oh and San Jose isn’t landlocked. Tiffany’s pretty sure a 2 foot deep part of the bay technically resides near the city limits 😉

      always great to hear from you.

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