Tribal kinship can be very confusing at times to an outsider. I imagine part of the reason for this confusion is the fact that western cultures have many relationships that are not part of our family line. In tradition tribal culture every connection was a relative of some sort. Before contact with the outside world, the only connections tribes had were with family or relatives; outside of those connections were enemies – that would eat you, literally. It always amazed me when a visitor showed up in the village, people knew exactly what to call the individual. It was either father, uncle, cousin, grandfather or my favorite Hamaru (two men that  married sisters would call each other this). We were adopted into a family line and soon were addressed by a kinship term in accordance with the family line that adopted us. I was addressed as yeti (brother), owai (grandfather), ofei (cousin), eite (father) and neise (brother-in-law). We learned in our language and culture acquisition that the tribe didn’t even have a word for “friend” because they knew how they were related to everyone they ever came in contact with. As the tribe’s horizons began to expand to the outside world, they had to build a word for friend in order for others to understand that the relationship was not through kin, but just a friend. The term they came up with is nati feni feni a’i or “our grandfathers were brothers two sides removed”!! When a non-relative would come visit us in the village, it took time for the tribal people to understand the concept of friend because in their culture they were literally related to everyone they ever knew!