My Mouth Feels A Little Numb.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

While we were on the island we were lucky enough to take part in a traditional Kava ceremony. Kava is a drink made from a root that is pounded and mixed with water. It looks and tastes a bit like mud, and the only effect that I felt was a numb mouth and later I had some crazy dreams. The locals swear by this stuff and I can assure you that this is a drink not just made for tourists. The Fijians love, love, love it and as part of the ceremony all tourists "gift" it to the chief and his tribe. In return we get to sit around partake in one of the coolest experiences of my life.
Behold the Kava ceremony.

First the root is pounded with a heavy metal rod. When I say heavy I mean HEAVY.

They ask for help from all the "strong" men on the island. They told us that pounding the Kava is supposed to increase fertility. You know I got my man right in on that one.

After it takes a beating the powder is poured into a large bowl.

Then mixed with water with something that looks like a sock.

The final result. Nope that's not mud.. that's what you drink.

We then line up next to our cups.

And are brought our offering.

A quick bow.

Down the hatch it goes.

After we were all loosened up we were provided with the greatest show on Earth.

This was the party of the decade/century as far as I'm concerned. I feel so grateful that we were able to participate in something so special with such an amazing group of people.

And... I swear my lips are still numb.


Jo said...

It's been a long time since I holed up in Fiji with a bunch of backpackers on a little resort island, but I still remember kava and the numb tongue. The staff on the island were prohibited from drinking liquor but could drink kava. So the band would play two songs, then announce "kava break!" and cue up their Abba cd. There was no ceremony --just a covert tub of kava and a shared serving bowl -- but several of us joined in. i recall that it looked and tasted like dishwater. Bula!

Polly said...

Its a strange sensation isn't it!

ThatGirl39 said...

Am loving your Fiji pics and stories. Girl you had the BEST time! xx

Laura Lohr : My Beautiful Life said...

Oh, your trip looks absolutely amazing! *jealous* Welcome back! :D