President’s Message – December 2018

Lessons from Kiribati

Starting my Holiday celebrations with a quiet week on Christmas Island surrounded by lovely kind people was just the ticket.  Yes, the fishing was epic – it always is – but that wasn’t the highlight of my trip.  This was my eighth trip to Christmas Island and if you have never been, I’d like to paint a picture for you.  The once a week flight lands you on an island, a coral atoll in the Pacific Ocean known as the Republic of Kiribati.  It’s a simple life on this island where technology is lacking & most homes have dirt floors and windows with wire instead of glass. Fresh fruit and vegetables are a luxury; their provisions come only once a week.  This is the world that most of the Islanders have known their entire lives. It felt to me that I had stepped back in time a hundred years, but this is what they know. This is their beautiful world where everyday the young children laugh and dance on the beach.  They swim in the beautiful water and they love to sing, especially if they know a stranger is watching.  They are kind people.  This is the reason I return to Christmas Island as often as I can.  It puts life back into perspective and reminds me what is important and what isn’t.  As our plane landed in Hawaii and my phone blew up with emails, I thought, “They are the lucky ones.”  Although lacking most material comforts, their joy in living shines bright in the equatorial sun.

I look forward to seeing you at our Holiday dinner, the program sounds wonderful.  I wish you a wonderful holiday with friends and family.  If you get the chance to sing out loud- preferably when everyone is watching – it will make you smile. I promise.

My best to you,




Teri with Christmas Island triggerfish