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Reisverslag A Dutch girl in Samoa: CH 7 ‘Count down’
18 juni 2015
A Dutch girl in Samoa: CH 7 ‘Count down’
Already nearly a month has been passed since my last update, so time for a new one. I haven’t done anything much special lately, so that’s why I didn’t had anything to report so soon.
Also this week is my last week at my internship placements and I have/want some things to do before I go to Fiji on holiday next week. Now I am busy and don’t have time to write my weblog. I can’t go too far into details in this update, but I will write more in my next update. This one will be the last one and I will be home again! I can’t believe it is almost finished. Let the count down begin.
Sunday, the 31st of May 2015 at 06.18am Annick and I were both awakened by an earthquake. Now don’t be alarmed, while it was just a medium earthquake. The earthquake measured a 5,8 on the scale of Richter. Quite the same as last time. The bed and walls were moving. An earthquake feels like one wrinkle in the water when a drop just have fallen into it. You feel the earth coming, getting stronger and then going again. First your bed begins to shake a little bit, then it begins to shake a bit harder, followed by shaking of the walls, this continues for approximately 10 seconds and finally the shaking stops gradually. For Annick this was her first earthquake she ever felt. For me it was the fifth and the fourth in Samoa. Still when it happened I was on my guard and ready to go under the desk or go outside. And on Tuesday, the 9th of June at 4 o’clock in the early morning there was another earthquake. This time it had a magnitude of 5,3 on the scale of Richter. Also with this one the walls shook a bit. It is probably the time for earthquakes or something, because there was another one on Friday, the 12th of June at 00.07 in the middle of the night. This one had a magnitude of 6. However you also need to put the depth and centre in account
I have been on the Samoan television a couple of times. The first time I was one of the audience at the male model show. The second time was during Eastern mass. Another time was at the closing ceremony of a workshop and then I was on television during Independence Day. Before I go further on independence day, here a short Samoan history lesson. Samoa was once occupied by Germany around the first World War and then by New Zealand. Samoa gained its independence on the 1st of January 1962 and the first of the Pacific Islands. It is now celebrated at the 1st of June. That day I to get up very early. That is five in the morning. There was a speech and then marching from 6 till around 8 o’clock. There were all kind of schools and organisations etc. gathered on the field next to the court house. I was with the Loto Taumafai School in the red puletasi uniform. After some speeches and hoisting the Samoan flag we started to march. Because we had some disabled people, we were the first people who marched (or rather walked) through the VIP tent, passing the prime minister and head of state and its wife. I still don’t know if it’s one person or that the prime minister and head of state are two persons. Because I don’t know the face I was not who is who. So but yeah that was the marching. For me marching means walking some distance, but that was not the case. It was just walking past the high chiefs of the country and that’s it. The reason it takes so long, is because there are so many schools and organisations. I was very glad we were the first ones, because it started to pouring rain right after we’ve been through the VIP tent. All the staff and students quickly went into the vans and cars that stood next to the field. Everyone got some breakfast (hotdog) and the children were being brought home immediately. It was too bad that it rained that morning. While in the afternoon the sun began to show itself. After the marching someone took me home and I went straight to bed. After 2 hours of sleep I went back to the court house again. There was dancing and singing from several villages. It was nice to watch it. This also took about 2 hours and in the end I got back home again. My host family just stayed home and watched everything on television. They of course have experienced it many times before now. However for me it’s special and I wanted to be there and experience it. The other volunteers were here and there that day.
As I said before, I didn’t do anything spectacular last few weeks. The Saturdays (on Sunday everything is closed) were always rainy. So Annick and I just been to Palolo Deep Marine Reserve twice. This beach is the closest to Apia and it has such nice coral and many fish. There are some small black fish who stare at you and even bite sometimes. It luckily doesn’t hurt that much. The other time I went there was also with Louise and Kristine. We only talked then. That day was a Saturday, two days before Independence Day. That Saturday was also cloudy, but no rain. In the afternoon was a Fautasi race. A fautasi is a cano with around 45 persons in it. The race took 2 hours out in the sea and the last few minutes was at Apia itself. They finished at the wharf. It was good to something cultural.
Saturday and Sunday 6 and 7th of June me and some other volunteers went to Namu’a island. That weekend was absolutely perfect. We saw turtles from the small motorboat that took us to the Island, the weather was great (got more tanned) and we were with a nice group. I walked around the Island during low tide, climbed the hill and snorkelled.
The weekend after that I and some (other) volunteers went to Lalomanu. I didn’t really like this weekend. The fiafia show on Saturday evening was nice though. Afterwards few got drunk, weather wasn’t that nice, couldn’t do very much and I felt tired. Not really a nice last whole weekend in Samoa unfortunately.
Talking about rainy weather. Again it rained on a Saturday, when everything is open. Why oh why? It supposed to be ‘dry’ season. However, it is a bit colder. Especially during the evenings. I sometimes even have to wear a vest. It is also a bit less humid.
At school everything goes well. I did my two workshops, which was a success. I did some observation in class and give some tips to the teachers.
The current volunteers at this moment are Annick from Luxembourg, Florian from France, Tobias from Holland, Kristine from Norway, Helen and Sophie (mother and 7-year-old daughter) from New Zealand, Jessica and Claire from Australia and Olivia from America. The group is getting slowly bigger now, with more people coming in July.
Do not forget to check my Facebook page ‘Psychologist Projects Abroad Samoa’ (http://facebook.com/psychologistsamoa) for photos and videos.
Lots of love from Samoa!
For the non-Dutch readers: if you want to read my previous updates. I have translated the Dutch words on this site to English in my first update. You will find it on the left side of this update at ‘reisverslagen’ [= travel blogs] (below the photo of the beach). Next click on ‘new adventure awaits’, (name of my first update). Or you can click on ‘vorige bericht’ [= previous blog] below this update until you get to the first update.
18 juni 2015 21:14 | Door: Frans Levels
weer leuke belevenissen. maar goed dat je vader het allemaal achteraf hoort