The islands of the CNMI are owned by the Chamorro people. No one who isn't Chamorro can actually own land here-- all the land occupied by foreigners is leased, eventually to return to the possession of the Chamorro owner.
It reminds me of the laws Moses set up for Israel. No one could sell or buy land. It could be rented and/or used by others, but every 49th year--the year of Jubilee--all lands reverted back to the original owner. God had promised the land of Israel to Abraham and his descendants forever. Of course, in order to do that, in an earthly, practical way, there had to be a mechanism through which the land would always remain in the hands of Abraham's descendants. So they passed laws prohibiting the sale of land. The Chamorro's have done the same here.
I still don't know exactly how the land is passed down to later generations, but I know that there are Chamorros waiting for land to become available.
It is always interesting to see how important the ownership of land is to them: even if all they own is the land, and have no money to build a home or make improvements, they can still be seen taking care of their land. They will 'bush wack' the grass, make a small lean-to or shed that they can use when they come to sit on their land. Some are even living on their land in tents.
I can relate to that. When we built our home in Granby, Connecticut, we just couldn't wait, and actually lived in a tent on our wooded property for a while. There is just something powerful about owning your own land!
I discovered a couple of new flowers on our recent travels, and also found that I had a passenger that I was unaware of: and baby praying mantis! I also caught sight of a very large lizard, the size of an iguana, but don't know for sure what it was--it was moving too fast.
The beautiful Tinian Christmas tree looks very different in the daytime. It was built with a steel frame, then covered with local grass, and then ornaments were added. Each candy cane has a word on it, such as truth, peace, love, ect. Some have family names on them.