The Solomons – Wanna buy some Whale Sperm?

Munda has a certain air of expectancy on a Thursday afternoon… The next day is market day and many of the local men like to have a drink or two in expectation of their forthcoming sales.

The Airport Bar at Munda

The Airport Bar at Munda

Located on the southwest tip of the island of New Georgia, Munda is a quiet place but prime real estate on the edge of the Roviana Lagoon with views to die for…

I had been in town for 10 days scuba diving with Graeme & Jen at Dive Munda and most afternoons I went for a wander around “town” to see what was going on. Two places had caught my eye – the Airport Bar and the Kava Bar as they were where the local “boyz n the hood” seemed to gravitate to about that time of the day.

Not wishing to miss anything of Munda I decided to try out both places before I left town, starting with a sundowner at the Airport Bar. No sooner had I sat down than one of the regulars approached me with an offer of a special price on what he assured me was a particularly fine specimen of whale sperm.

Whale sperm sample in Munda's Airport Bar

Whale sperm sample in Munda’s Airport Bar

This was something I had to take his word for, given that I have very little experience with whale sperm and my request for him to explain how he had gathered the sample was lost in translation…

Clearly an impressive sample!

Clearly an impressive sample!

However I did later learn (thanks Graeme) that whale sperm is a misnomer.

Ambergris is the proper name and it gets washed up on the beach and it is indeed quite valuable – maybe next time!

Having turned down the whale sperm I headed for the Kava bar, where you could say I stood out a little, given the fact I was at least twice as old as the average patron and the only white guy in the place…

But to my great relief I was warmly welcomed, particularly after I bought a round of beers to ingratiate myself!

The Kava Bar in Munda

The Kava Bar in Munda

Surrounded by my new best friends I became engaged in several parallel conversations and quickly realized that I was about a dozen Solbrews behind everybody.

What's your name bro?

What’s your name bro?

Polite conversation at the Kava Bar seems to follow a common thread – something along the lines of “what’s your name bro?” followed by “what you doing here?”

There also seems to be a short term memory problem amongst the patrons…

Because by the time I had answered the two questions and worked my way back to my very best friend in the red shirt, who had insisted on sitting next to me, he seemed a little confused and asked “what’s your name bro?”.

The purchase of another round of Solbrews subsequently elevated me to a status that surprised even me!

However it did very little to resolve the memory loss problem, which now appeared to be spreading at an alarming rate.

I embarked on another set of parallel conversations all initiated with “what’s your name bro?”.

As the second round of Solbrews came to an end my very best friends were clearly hoping for the trifecta, but I decided that enough was enough and I needed to get out of there before they could actually remember my name!

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