Hey You Have Time…

You want to wash your underwear and take a shower, why not do both at the same time.
Coconut flavored anything is pretty darn good.
Samoan buses are converted old semi with wooden shells built upon the old frames. They blast awesome remixes of Samoan artists with American artists
Soda has cane sugar in it here… so it’s sinfully good
Volunteers are beginning to get pigs for pets (which is really just a promise by the family that they won’t kill it)
Still trying to get used to be cut off from the rest of the world
Watching the lizards hunt is entertaining
Did I ever mention it gets really hot!

The biggest culture shock of Samoa is not the food, not the quality of living, but actually the aspect of time. In America we tend to be a bit obsessive compulsive about being places on time or just time in general. We are entranced on the 8am-5pm schedule and the fact we need go to bed at a decent time. In Samoa time schedules don’t exist.

I am sure you have heard of the concept of island time, well that is alive and well here. The only exception is church (lotu) on Sunday (Aso Sa), because it is frowned upon to not attend. Otherwise, it’s a show up when you feel like it culture. A prime example would be our first week in the village. A volunteer was waiting to go to class when they asked him what time class started. He looked down at his watch and said now, what was their response? ” Okay, let’s eat breakfast now.”

I enjoy the laid back attitude about going places here. There is no pressure about having to face consequences when being late. I was conditioned by my wrestling coach in high school to be early or I would get to lovingly run hills. Many of us have been conditioned in a similar fashion. We have a tendency to even put our own safety at risk just to be on time. Here the Samoan’s would laugh at you.

It is commonplace that you will told to be somewhere at noon and no one even moves until 1:30pm. This occurred a few weeks ago when I headed to play rugby. The boy who invited me told me to show up at noon but my brother saved me when he said, “No, we won’t need to leave until 1pm after we have lunch (mea’ai auauli).”

The only time the melancholy bothers me is on the weekend when I don’t know what to do with myself. I tend to read over the weekends; hence why I have finished four books in just less than four weeks. Sometimes you just need to create your own entertainment, which is easy in America with the technology. I am slowly getting used to the relaxed nature of things, I may have a harder time returning to the States than adapting to a less strict schedule.