This might be my most favorite Tongan tale yet.
Here it goes.
There is a "mountain" (I use quotes because I don't consider it a mountain, even though Tongans do) in Neiafu called Mt. Talau (pronounced: Tah-la-ow).
What is unique about this landmark is how flat the top is.
|Mt. Talau is right above the red flowers in this picture.|
See? Pretty flat right?
Anyway, apparently Mt. Talau wasn't always flat and that's the story I am here to tell you today.
(Mom, turn off Criminal Minds and devote your full attention to this... it's pretty good stuff)
Once upon a time the Tongan Gods started bragging about how they had the highest mountains in the entire South Pacific. They were proud and wanted to let everyone know about the beauty of their island nation. However, the Samoan Gods disagreed.
In fact, the Samoan Gods were mighty upset that the Tonga would claim such a title so in the middle of a moonless night a Samoan God came to Vava'u and found Mt. Talau.
He began sawing the top of Mt. Talau off, but was not quiet enough.
He woke up a Tongan God who was not very happy. But by this point the Samoan God had already lifted the top of Mt. Talau from its perch and was carrying it over the water.
One of the Tongan gods heard him and remembered a unique and important fact about Samoan Gods: they hate sunlight because it causes them to turn to stone, so they only come out at night.
So the Tongan God did the only thing he could think of... he dropped his pants and mooned the Samoan God. With the Tongan's butt high in the air, the Samoan God became so frightened (thinking that he had come into contact with the sun) that he dropped the top of Mt. Talau in the water creating a new island.
This island is still around today and is known as Lotuma (pronounced Low-two-ma).
And now you know.