Funeral in Nahnpohnmal

An alumni of the Community College of Micronesia who went on to become a teacher, vice principal, principal, councilman, and a leader in his church has passed on. I knew Esdanis Suldan best as the proprietor of 6-11, his son was also a student of mine. Active in his community and a devoted father, he touched and changed many lives.

 Sra Ioanis by the casket keeping wake
 Tulpe Wilson and other mourners.
Soumas en kousapw presides over evening sakau. When the uhpeimwahu was loaded there were only two pounders and an apparent shortage of other ready and willing pounders. Glances were exchanged, a couple older men looked down. I was outside the open sided nahs lost in my own thoughts, but aware of events in the nahs.

The next day I would be proctoring my ethnobotany final examination. Part of the final is a field examination in the ethnobotanical garden. Attempts to do this practical portion of the examination as a class last term - twenty-five students - led to issues of honesty. This term I had decided to experiment with breaking the class up into groups of seven or fewer students. This spreads the practical out over a five hour period of time, a long day. Hence I had no original intent to enter the nahs.

Then I realized I was probably failing my own field practical in ethnobotany. I knew the problem. I stood, pulled off my shirt, and entered the nahs. I did not know the layout nor where the moahl were kept. Few in the nahs knew me. I turned to one friend I knew I could trust and said, "Mie moahl?" He smiled, and quickly located a stone.

I sat down amid murmuring behind me. I said nothing. A fourth was located. The menindei seemed hesitant. Our fourth had to ask the menindei to proceed. Only then did the menindei call on us to start.

As we started an ohl came up next to me to take my stone. I did not look at him. When the menindei called keidihd, I did so. That caused someone behind me to murmur, "ohlen Pohnpei."

I received my grade for the evening by being honored by the soumas with a nopwei cup. I had passed.

I sat back down by the peitehl, comforted by family talk, while thinking of friends gone.


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