Saturday, March 31, 2007
Kalavata - colour-vata - same colour/pattern
In Fiji it is popular to dress in identical colours/patterns such as matching men's shirts and women's dresses or sulu (wrap-around skirt)and jiaba (top, especially for a party or celebration. Yesterday many of us dressed in the same colour for a welcome ceremony for the Moderator of the Uniting Church in Victoria, Rev. Jason Kioa, who is originally from Tonga. Peceli had a bright shirt, I had a bright dress and many others from our church community wore clothes made from the same cloth. Thank you to Rev Eseta Meneilly for sewing ours even though she has had a very busy week which included her graduation with a Master of Divinity Award! I have a second-hand Janome lent to me but so far I don't know how to thread the cotton!
Here are some pictures showing the love of kalavata which is rather different from the vavalagi/European view that a woman just does not wear an identical dress to another woman! One is from California, another from Nauru taken at the South Pacific Forum a few years ago. Of course uniformity is the customary dress in Fijian choirs.
I don't know how happy George Bush and John Howard were to wear identical shirts at some gig in South East Asia one time!