National Geographic : 1992 Jul
he wasn't. Thirty men were injured; six were hospitalized in Losuia, one of whom later died. The government fined some of the villagers and sentenced oth- ers to several months in jail. That was a great surprise-the men of the peaceful village turn- ing into warriors. I began to think that because these islands were so small, the inherited land and possessions of each village were very precious. No outsider was allowed to presume upon them. I should have known. They were valiant fishermen, they were fearless divers; why shouldn't they be warriors when the occasion demanded it? They were also brave sailors. There are not many islands in the Pacific where large ocean- going outrigger canoes are still being made and sailed, but on the Trobriands canoe building is part of the daily life of a coastal village . It is all accomplished by hand, and without wire or nails. About 18 months after the first chops of the adz begin hollowing Piercing sunlit shallows with a wooden , metal-tipped spear, an islander from Gilibwa scours the reeffor fish . Though most ofhis catch goes to feed his family, he may sell some for cash and trade the rest for vegetables.