What can I say?

Independence.
What can I say? To be Samoan is to be proud of who you are and where you come from. So even though I was Queen of slack that was too hungover to go witness the patriotic march and raising of our flag symbolic of the blood shed by our forefather’s so we could enjoy our unbridled god-ordained freedom, I can still say with beer breath and reverent pride that I’m a proud Samoan Queen of slack that was too hungover to go witness the patriotic march and raising of our flag symbolic of the blood shed by our forefather’s so we could enjoy our unbridled god-ordained freedom.

I was there in spirit.



My Savaii Trip.
What can I say? I'm back at the office after spending independence weekend in Savaii with four friends and a village full of family. Disappointed isn’t quite the word. Crestfallen. Miserable is more what I’m feeling now that I’m back behind a desk after visiting Savaii.

Savaii from the back of Fotu o Samoa.



Having spent so much of my life there, it’s surprising that I’m always abruptly reminded of how different life can be on two different ends of the island. The pace, the people, the air is different even. I was pretty decent mess while I was there. Hair in a permanent tangle, skin warm, oily and sporting a rather healthy (meauli) tan, sandy bare feet no longer acquainted with shoes (I have blisters to show) – I’m starting to sound like a right cast away aren’t I? All the while I was in a perpetual state of bliss. Enjoying brazen sunsets and getting high on intoxicatingly fresh sea breezes, it was (and I didn’t know it until I got there) exactly what I needed right then. And who better to share it with then four good friends, six including our trusty friends Vailima and Gordon (’s Gin.) On Thursday we ferried over and we stayed at my family owned Vaisala Hotel. In my highly based opinion, the most beautiful place in the world. :) The conversation was good, so was the sunset gazing silence and of course what’s a weekend away with friends without a few confessions? hehe Se I bromis. Would “I” tell?

After a heady mix of lobster dinners, midday swims, hours of drifting between beach book reading and napping, my four friends returned to Upolu on Saturday. I was packed to leave and then my Uncle asked “Where are you going? Stay and spend Sunday with me.” What could I say? I didn't need much convincing either, so I stayed. Once my friends had left I immediately lost my self bestowed “guest” status and was ordered to suit up (in a puleta) and stand at the bar.

Later at night, I went into the neighbouring villages looking for an open store to restock the bar ciagarettes. I went three villages deep and all to no avail, everywhere was closed at 8.30pm on a Saturday night. I decided to try my luck and ended up knocking on the door of one of the storeowners I knew and who I hoped would remember me and serve me despite that I was rudely interrupting the family Bingo I could hear taking place out back. They greeted me by name, sold me ciggy's and I left politely refusing invitations to join in Bingo and silently thanking that I really did have to work that night.

We had a relatively busy night with guests staying around after dinner to enjoy the String Band who were spurred on by continuous rounds of Vailima being shouted by entertained guests. Once we’d locked up the bar – my two cousins and I proceeded to have our usual drunken discussion about our fathers, our cousins, our sister’s and our sister’s husband’s before placing a few overseas calls to tell our rather annoyed families how much we love them (Kaoga ia e momoe!) despite our blatantly ignorant consumption of the resources of the family business. My trip just wouldn’t have been complete without it.

Attending Church on Sunday, I stayed at least half an hour after the service to greet old ladies and old men that wanted to pull at my cheeks and tell me how fat and dark I’d gotten. I smiled and patiently answered their questions about how my parents were and put up a poor defense for myself when asked to explain what I was doing living in Upolu instead of staying in the village like a good chief’s daughter should. The pastor’s wife asked if I had been fasting with the rest of the village as they had been for the upcoming centennial Thanksgiving service. What could I say? *Gulp* I could only nod as sincerely as I could and pray the lord wouldn’t strike me down for lying to his servant in his holy house. The pastor insisted that I spend my last night with them and I almost too quickly refused and said I’d visit them next time I was in town. God Bless them.



I sat in silence and enjoyed the picturesque diamond studded Ocean and sun rays beating hard on to the horizon. It would be the last full technicolour panoramic view of this I would have in a long while. I rekindled old dreams of being a travel writer and recaptured young adventures of numerous near drowning incidents and countless coral inflicted cuts. Taking it all in, as I tried to imprint it into my mind I was overwhelmed with a sense of peace and renewed hope for what lay ahead in this crazy ride called life.



So now, I'm dejectedly back at work - but a part of me is still brimming with optimism here after dreamily recapping my somewhat eutopian version of my trip and I can't help but smile. I guess it’s true what they say. Home really is where the heart is. And I'm sure glad mine is in Samoa. The independent state of Samoa, I should say. God Bless Samoa.

Comments

nannyboo said…
LOL @ u...hahaha...damn u sound like u had heaps of fun:) sure do wish i know what Savai'i is like cos like i've only been there once aye and it was on a freakin geography field trip...pee hee..u know the nun faasa us to go anywhere?? ia ga kogu a...lmao...im sure u guys had heaps of fun and that lucky muli Tia ACTUALLY got permission to go with u! HA! im so jealous, better start being nice to mom now *winks* hehe...have a nice day darls:D

*nan quickyly goes back to reading her textbooks*

ailoga??? lmao
pattie cakes said…
nice entry fotu! thats true home is where the heart is! cant wait to come home, too cold hea for me! have an awesome day/weekend :)
Not a Pinky said…
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
fotu of samoa said…
welcome baby chudren!

Yes we had a marvellous time in Savaii pretending to be turisis! hehe.

And hurry up the both of ya with ya pretending to read ya textbooks and hurry home.

We'll keep the drinks cold. :)
supasta said…
oh but i was chalas abt you guys and your trip..
Fili told us about it and we wanted to come along...but then u know...we was NO for the pemika..hehe..more like our parents was haved no trust in us..lol..teeeheee...

anywhos..sounds like u guys had heapsa fun..lucky bumz
and i was loved your dream of being a writer and traveller...you forgot one thing in dea...hhhmmm....uuummm...ok neva mind..lol...

eh..beta fuck off to do some work

i was seed to you lata darls:)

smiles:)
Shark Girl said…
You was look it like you was have it the fabuloso weekend. I was envy you pitches. Next time, Tino was go wif you...AND Tino's baby momma. Haha.
fotu of samoa said…
And we was suit up Tinto in the most adorable liddle swimsuitey and take her for a dip!

Then we was ooh and aah and take fotos of her cuteness.

Before we put her to bed and bring out the vodka!

:)
juliacp said…
born and raised in tutuila.. but i truly and honestly wish i had grown up in apia... would've loved to get away from the damned american system sometimes... sigh... lucky you!