16 Dec Why I’m Going Back to Savaii
I went to Savaii on the ferry. It was epic.
I did NOT get seasick.
I did NOT fall overboard and drown.
I did NOT get eaten by rabid sharks.
I did NOT cry / shake / hyperventilate all the way there.
Instead, I –
*Met up with friends on the boat and had a lovely catchup chat. Thank you Logo for keeping me company there and back!
*Enjoyed the salt breeze and glorious ocean views. As well as the very clean and comfortable air conditioned interior on board. I highly recommend the boat to Savaii. They have TV for the kids to watch, snacks to buy and did you read the key words, AIR CONDITIONING? And it only costs twelve tala.
*Was awed by my drive to Vaiola College. Salelologa was rather ramshackle and sad looking but once away from there, the villages are beautiful. Lush gardens and forest and plantations. Vibrant colors everywhere of flowers and fruits. Lots of friendly people.
*Was blown away by Vaiola College itself. Nestled in green hills and touched by majestic blue sky, its an oasis of bustling community and learning and it has a special spirit. A feeling of peace and serenity. I wished my stay were longer.
*Was impressed by the students as they spoke, sang and graduated. Their singing and their obvious love for their school and each other, as well as the palpable waves of pride from the parents and extended family aiga – well, I cried it was so beautifully emotional. An exceptional young man gave the Valedictorian address right before my speech and it had me scrambling because it was so powerful and actually covered some of the points I was going to say (except he said it much better than I could) so I had to do some quick thinking and make a few things up on the spot. Im dreadful at impromptu speeches so I was a sweaty nervous wreck by the time I got up to do my thing. Thankfully it was a very kind audience so it was much less scary than it could have been.
*Was embraced and welcomed by teachers and administrators who showered me with flower lei, delicious food and stunning gifts. On the trip back I carried an entire tray of pineapple custard pie with me on the ferry and pretty much the entire cabin was treated to the sweet gardenia perfume of my flowers. The students presented me with an engraved glass star trophy which Little Daughter exclaimed “Its like an Academy Award!”
Im now a believer.
In Vaiola College as a school.
In the ferry as a safe and pleasant mode of transport.
And in Savaii as a truly glorious destination that Im going to head back to. But this time with all the family.
Fa’afetai tele lava Vaiola College for the invitation. And for (gently) getting me out of my hermit comfort zone so I could experience a very little bit of what makes Savaii a unique treasure.
I will definitely be back.