When Savannah Met Alida in a Vanuatu Village

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I don’t know why it has taken me so long to write this post.

Savannah meeting Alida was one of the most touching moments I have ever experienced travelling and affirmed for me why travel with our children is the right choice for us.

It’s challenging to travel with kids and I worry about possible negative impacts.

This is the voice of mother’s guilt that arrives the minute your wriggling, crying new born is placed in your arms.

It’s a whole lot of love and responsibility packaged into one adorable bundle and sometimes the task feels so overwhelming.

“This moment in Vanuatu made me feel like I was somehow getting motherhood right”

Our friend, Jennifer, asked about the hugely popular photo we shared on our facebook page. I told her of my struggles writing about it.

children playing

“I just don’t feel like I can capture why it was so special.”

“You can. It’s there within you, just let it come out.”

So I’ll try.

Why did I start this travel blog?

Because I have a whole lot of love for the world and its people.

I’ve been so blessed to travel for the majority of my adult life. The greatest gift it has ever given me is to understand that people are all the same. It doesn’t matter where we were born or what we do with our lives, we all just want to be happy and to be loved.

I hate fighting, I hate people hating, I hate wars.

I desperately want the world to be full of peace, love and mung beans. Life is better when we get along and are happy.

I started the blog because I thought I could share the world and show people just how much we all are alike.

I know this concept of peace is crazy and probably never going to happen, but you can never stop hoping.

Larofa Cultural Village, Vanuatu

a girl watching people dance
Ready for the show

On a sunny Vanuatu morning over a cup of coffee and a biscuit, my ideal world happened through the eyes of our children.

Children don’t see divides, they don’t see hatred, and they don’t see why you are better or less than me.

They just see love and joy and wonder.

Savannah meets Alida

The two girls couldn’t have been more different.

One with curly caramel hair and dark skin wearing a grass skirt.

The other, fair with snowy blonde hair wearing a blue singlet and white skirt.

Two babies enamoured with their differences, yet joined by the commonalities of laughter and wonder.

They eyed each other from afar.

Alida slowly crept closer to Savannah. Savannah giggled and began crawling away before stopping and turning to stare, beckoning her to come play with a smile.

She jumped up and down and began creeping again, getting closer and then running away. The game continued just as the fire walking started, the main event our cruise tour group had come to see at the traditional Larofa cultural village.

Amongst my joy in watching the two girls interact, I felt sad and guilty because barely anyone was watching the warrior perform the amazing feat of walking over hot coals.

They were watching the two girls.

Like moths to the flame they became transfixed their hearts overflowing with joy because they each recognized what it was.

Pure love and honour for each other.

What we all really want.

They celebrated the differences by pulling hair, stroking faces and holding hands. They jumped up and down and giggled and squealed

They pointed and looked back at their families,

“Hey do you see my cool friend over here?”

a child watching people dance

children playing in dirt

Local Vanuatu girl

children playing

little girls looking at a tree hut

Local Vanuatu girl

a cultural group of people

kids talking to each other

kids talking to each other

A small child playing with a baby

little girls holding hands

your heart is the same as mine

the hand of friendship has no colour

the hand of friendship has no colour

the hand of friendship has no colour

two children meet

Got your skirt

Why I Travel With My Children

That moment encapsulates why I travel and why I make the sacrifices to travel with my children.

It’s what I really want for the world I live in.

What sort of people will our children be if they grow up knowing that we are all the same and that is all that matters?

What sort of world will we have when those children bring with them a world that accepts the differences as something to be celebrated and learned from, not feared?

I don’t ever want to stop hoping for that world. I don’t ever want to stop working towards it. For now, I’ll just have to rely on our children to remind me that it’s possible.

a cultural group of people

a woman holding a baby

people holding sticks

a man holding two kids

I have a favourite children’s book I love to read with Kalyra. She now knows all the words and I love to hear her sweet voice read it to me.

I hear it and I think all is right with the world.

It’s called Whoever you Are, by Mem Fox

“Little one, whoever you are, wherever you are, there are little ones just like you all over the world.
Their skin may be different from yours, and their homes may be different from yours.
Their lives may be different from yours, and their words may be very different from yours.

But inside, their hearts are just like yours,
Their smiles are like yours, and they laugh just like you.
Their hurts are like yours, and they cry like you, too.
Remember this:
Joys are the same, and love is the same.
Pain is the same, and blood is the same.
Smiles are the same, and hearts are the same, wherever they are, wherever you are, wherever we are, all over the world.” 

Have you ever experienced a moment like this before in your travels?

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