Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Samoa - Finale (For Now)

Now that the All Blacks have been in Samoa for the test match with Manu Samoa - it might be an inspiration for many people to visit this small island country. When we were there in May, Samoans were all excited about this match. Although they lost the game, I do not think they care much. They would be happy enough that the All Blacks were there. They might not win the battle but they'll win the hearts of many, many visitors.

One of the best charms of Samoa is its people. The first day that we explored Apia, we were neutral about the place. We could not help compare it to Denarau in Fiji but it is not a fair comparison. Denarua is manufactured and equipped with 4 star plus resorts and facilities. It is almost a gated tourist community, safe, plush, and convenient.

Although many things are not that neat and might be a bit broken here and there in Samoa: roads are not all paved, small garages run out of petrol or only the door on the passenger side on rental cars can be open, the whole place still cruises along with a smile. And Samoa has definitely grown on us. When we dined in Samoa, quite often there would be locals seated at several tables around us - no tension and most seemed to be happy. Locals are willing to help if you need help or get lost, sometimes with machete in their hands but it means they just stop working to come to see you to offer assistant.
Every village seems to have at least one church. Some are more opulent than others. These villages seem to give the villagers a sense of community and togetherness, a place where they belong and have activities together. Kids play volleyball and rugby in the same field most afternoons.They go to church together on Sundays in their best whites. They feast together in the communal hall. The guy at AquaSamoa  where we frequented and took the Hobie cat out a few times while staying at the Sheraton told us that Samoans are happy people and we couldn't agree more.

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