Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Learning Journal 23

For our Tongan language class we planned a field trip for today. We were going to go to Salt Lake but not enough people showed up from both of the classes so we just stayed around in Provo. We went to Many Lands and Sione showed us some Tongan food before heading over to a restaurant just down the street called Sweet's. I ate a teriyaki burger while the owners explained how everyone in Tongan culture is related somehow. We later went to the luau in the WILK and saw a lot of dancing. It was interesting to see how proud the Polynesian community was of their various cultures. The program spotlighted Hawaii, Samoa, Fiji, Tahiti, Tonga and New Zealand with several dances from each place.
One thing that I didn't completely understand was that during some of the dances people would go up on stage and throw many at the girls dancing. I realize that its not done in a bad way because men and women would go up and throw money at the girls dancing. The thing that confused me was that everyone seemed to know when it was appropriate. Not every culture had people get up on stage to give money, and it wasn't on every song. During the Samoa segment a woman with a huge headdress seemed to be the signal for the money. But in the Tongan dance the only difference was that only girls were dancing, and they were wearing the ta'ovala. But after they'd been dancing for a minute people just got up and walked across the stage throwing money at the dancers as they went by. I'll have to look into it more and see what that means.

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