Sunday, May 8, 2011

Manuia le Aso Tina

Mother’s Day 2011

I should have learned that travelling before a busy holiday (Mother’s Day is a public holiday in Samoa) is never a fun experience.  I skipped travelling Friday afternoon because I knew it would be a similar experience as travelling for Easter….and I did not want to do that again.  Then on Saturday, I was just too lazy to leave.  I got a phone call about a ride to the wharf early, and just wanted to relax for as long as possible.  I ended up on the last boat.

The boat was packed.  There was no path to walk up the stairs to the top deck, and people were sitting or standing around the outside railings.  I found a little space with a family that was lying on the floor, and I joined them.  Riding boats really rock me to sleep and I was so happy to find such a prime space (even though you could smell the petrol from the boat there). We were all lying there so close next to each other.  When someone stirred a little bit, everyone felt it.  We were like frankfurters still the package before they get loose to become hot dogs. 

When we arrived in Salelologa, I was scared about the bus situation.  My bus has not been coming for the last ferry for the past month, but in Apia I was reassured with so many people travelling, there would definitely be busses.  I didn’t realize quite how many busses this meant.  There were 7 Queen Maggie Busses!  (This probably doesn’t mean anything to you if you are not from here…)  I saw two busses and got on the one that was from 2 villages away.  I always try to support the bus drivers who live closest to my house first.

As we began pulling away I saw there were two more of my district busses hidden in the back.  I had a little piece of guilt and sulked down in my seat as I saw the bus from my village.  I know everyone wants you to take the bus from your area, and I normally do this, but I didn’t see it, and I did not want to have someone hassle me if they saw me taking a different bus. 

It was a good thing that there were 4 district busses as each of ours had only a few lap seaters, and it was nice to not be packed further inside the bus making it impossible to breathe. 

When I got off my village, I was immediately called “ka’a” for being away and missing our Mother’s Day dance practice.  (A practice I was unaware of…) I was reminded to iron and wear the nicest white puletasi I had.  I agreed, then walked home with a neighbor where we had a little Mothers Day celebration in our family.

The next day, the women gathered outside the church hall with flowers.  We then marched inside the church together singing a song.  After the service, we then had our performance.  There was about 6 songs we danced to, with acting in between.  It was a lot of fun.

This year was the first Mother’s Day in which I was one of the people honored, and it was nice.  (Still not planning on having any kids in the near future to begin celebrating in America as well!)

For all the women reading this, Manuia le Aso Tina!  Happy Mother’s Day! 

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