After a week of sleepless nights and many tears, Eden’s Palakisa Broder got the news she was hoping for on Thursday afternoon, with confirmation from the Australian High Commission that her Husband David was safe and well.
Mrs Broder hadn’t spoken to her husband since Saturday morning, just hours before the underwater volcano and tsunami hit Tonga.
Fears for the safety of her husband David, and other family members in Tonga, were escalated for Palakisa after she received news of the death of her best friend earlier this week, who was washed away during the Tsunami.
“My friend Angelica passed on,” Mrs Broder said.
“When I heard that she passed on, it hit me and that’s the worry, the unknown of my husband, whether he’s okay or not okay,” she said.
Communications were restored in Tonga on Thursday and after many attempts, she finally got him on the line.
“Hello,” said David on the call.
“I feel better now, I haven’t sleep or eat much,” Mrs Broder said.
“We’re going to lose a lot of plants love,” David said.
“Yeah I know, don’t worry about that, what’s important is that I can hear your voice and your safe,” Palakisa said.
David said he had gone to the village where Palakisa’s brother and extended family live, and confirmed the the family was safe and well.
Mr Broder is reportedly doing well but is dealing with the aftermath of the catastrophic event.
UN officials report that 84,000 people — more than 80 per cent of Tonga’s population — have been impacted by the volcano’s eruption.
Below is the text message David sent to Palakisa after their first call on Thursday evening.
Mrs Broder has been living in Eden for almost two years, after Tonga closed its borders due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I would love to go home but it depends on Tonga, if they’re going to open up the border for us to come home,” Mrs Broder said.
“It’s hard because Tonga is making it hard for us to go back because of COVID, they haven’t got any cases,” she said.
“They should let us come home, that’s all I’m asking.”
Now she knows David is safe, Palakisa said she can finally sleep well again.
Image Credit: Palakisa Broder