The 7 degrees of Samoa

You may have heard of a concept called the 7 degrees of Kevin Bacon. It was cooked up around a game some college friends made when they were bored. It is based upon the fact that Mr. Bacon has been in an enormous amount of movies. Any actor/actress that has worked with him is on his 1st degree. If an actor/actress hasn’t worked with Kevin, but has worked with someone on the 1st degree, well that individual is on the 2nd degree. I am sure you can make a guess how the following degrees work. If you would like to check this game out for yourself, I advise typing it into google.

So, how does the 7 degrees of Kevin Bacon relate to Samoa? After spending a short period of time with this island nation I have discovered that everyone is related. If you slightly change the concept, one could apply it to any individual Samoan. Let’s use my host brother in Sa’anapu as an example. He once stated that he was related to half the village. I took this as an exaggeration until it was proven to me, by meeting said family over the course of my two-month stay. It seems that the family grows bigger with each day that passes. In our family compound alone there are 20 people, if you count the rest of the village we must top 100.

This doesn’t only apply to Sa’anapu. It seems like no matter where I go there will be someone in relation to my brother. While in Apia for my shoulder I was approached by a woman in the hotel. I hadn’t said a word about Sa’anapu, but she knew exactly whom I was staying with. Furthermore, when I told my host mother that I would soon be living in Aleisa she became excited. Why, because her sister and her family happen to live there.

No matter what part of the country you go, someone will always know you. This doesn’t only account for my host family, but for any Samoan family. In America there is a saying, “Word travels fast in small town.” That seems even more fitting right here in Samoa. Word travels over the coconut wireless. It is impressive how fast news can travel. It only takes hours for personal news in a village to spread to the other side of the country. As a Pisikoa everyone is interested in your news, and you are treated as a celebrity. With this in mind, you must be careful when your under the spotlight.