Report: Visiting Embassy of Fiji!

Date:August 29th Thursday 12:00~16:30
Age:3rd-6th grade elementary school, 10 children
Guide:Fujimatsu, Mukai, Koshiba, Nagasue
Weather:cloudy & Rainy

We held an event for elementary school kids “ Let’s visit the Embassy of Fiji”. 10 children at 3rd-6th grade, 3 boys and 7girls, visited the Embassy of Fiji at Kamiya-cho. 2 volunteers took part in the event as guide.
At the beginning, they listened to general instructions on the field trip, introduced each other and got basic information of Fiji. The children made a list of questions they wanted to ask at the Embassy. They thought hard and came up with many questions. After going to the restroom, we are off to Fiji!

Although we worried about the bad weather, the rain stopped so we did not get wet while we walked from the station to the Embassy. Then we got there little early than we expected. We thought that building was dignified and distinct from usual office building.

Iki Ikuyo Kawabata, aka Iki, Tourism & Commercial Officer, and gave us a tour of the Embassy. Staff asked children to be quiet while they stayed in the office and they entered quietly, a little nervous.
Ms. Iki let us in the room decorated brightly with local products and beautiful folk crafts. Then she got start to talk about Fiji.
「At the beginning, we say “Bula” with big smile! “Bula” means “Hi” in Fiji. Saying “Bula”, Fijian people could become friends with anybody at once!」
Ms. Iki led quiet children friendly and questioned one after another. 「What does the pigeon express on national flag?」「What does the gold lion bring on hand??」
For a while, children hesitated to answer, however they gradually become to be brisk and raise their hands positively!

*Fiji consists of 330 islands
*Fiji is tropical island but there are seasons
*The national language is English. Fiji is a multi-cultural society so Fijian, Hindu, and other
languages are also spoken etc…
Ms Iki explained about Fiji as clear as children can understand. Most interesting story was about the seasons. Ms.Iki asked children,
“How hot do you think Fiji’s summer is?”
Almost children answered individually, but Ms. Iki did not
say “Yes” for the answers at all.
“The answer is that it is too hot to work!”
Children hearing the Iki’s answer said,
“That’s a cheating!”
As for food culture, Fijian regularly eat potatoes, fishes, fruits and rice as same as Japanese. Every dishes with coconut’s milk are really delicious and curry is also wonderful because many Indian people live in Fiji.

After interesting talking by Ms.Iki, we watched a video of Fiji. We could meet many great smiles of Fijian people, beautiful clear sea as we can see the sea-bed, diving, culture and food. We learned many things of Fiji!

Finally Ms. Iki gave us the time for questions. Children totally seem to be familiar with the place and remarked questions roundly.
Q “What is the one word to describe Fiji?” A “Well…It would be heaven!”
Q “Do Fijian children have cell phone?” A “No they don’t. Even a adult, almost all the people do not have it.”
Q “What is the life expectancy in Fiji?” A “It is about 60 year-old because medical technology is not so high like Japan.”
Q “What is the average height?” A “It would be about 180cm and 100Kg.”
Everyone “Really??!!”
The questions continued, and finally, Ms. Iki had to ask the children to stop asking.
The last question was about what role of Embassy is. Embassy of Fiji mainly take care of 150 Fijian living in Japan, and conduct diplomacy with Japan. I wonder what the children felt about the work of the Embassy.

We took picture together! We believe it would be a great experience for children at the end of summer holidays. We really appreciate everyone in the Embassy for welcoming us!

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