In the first school today – Ohmine Elementary School – Randall Harry settled the 700 children in their hall and introduced us.
The children were the fastest yet at guessing our countries and enthusiastically joined in the World Harmony Run song.
We swapped roles to bring some newness into our presentation.
The Principal, Steve Seiola, received the Peace Run Certificate of Appreciation.
Everyone had a chance to hold the Peace Torch as they left the hall and then sprinted off to run a circuit of their field.
At Kolonia Elementary School, the Principal Charles Edwin led the event with a prayer of gratitude.
The children did well in the hot sun, sheltering under leaf umbrellas.
Hold that banner up high!
The principal here is Vice President of the athletics committee of the Federated States of Micronesia and was bubbling with ideas of how to involve the children in the run. The Micronesian Regional Championships are being held here for the first time in June and he would have loved to have us open the games if we could have been there. What a compliment! He thanked us from the bottom of his heart but it is us who are grateful for the opportunity to meet our Pohnpeian brothers and sisters and share our dreams for Peace.
In the afternoon we took an excursion ...
... with the Peace Torch ...
... to the ancient ruins of Nan Madol.
It was quite an adventure! We followed winding paths through the jungle and waded through mangrove swamps to reach the main ruins.
It is incredible. Huge blocks of heavyweight basalt carved rocks were somehow transported to the site and used to build the structures.
Much of the area has been claimed by greenery but the area still holds the energy of a happy existence.
On the way back from the ruins we came across the warden dehusking coconuts. The meat goes to feed the pigs and the husks are used as fuel for the local oven. It is admirable to recognise such a versatile plant.
We wound our way back along the coastal road. Cars drive at about 50km (25 miles) an hour, which is totally appropriate for avoiding dogs, pigs, chickens and people, and also for driving through the sporadic heavy downpours.
We went for a lovely evening meal with Liz MacDonald from the Red Cross. It was a treat to have delicious home cooked food!