A little introduction on Alex Rogers:  

For several years (13) I ran a softball organization for girls to help them obtain their goals of playing in college.  This is where Alex and my paths crossed.  Alex’s Father John coached my 16U and 18U Gold team for many years with his daughter in the outfield.  Of course, Alex was a superior outfielder with a great sense of humor! Till this day I can just imagine the conversation that went on in that outfield.  At times she drove me a little crazy, but a good crazy 🙂  

Moreover, I can not expressive in words how proud I am of Alex and all her accomplishments.  She has signed with the Peace Corps which in itself shows you what type of a person Alex is AMAZING!  One of the select few who I called “one of my kids” all those 13 years, I now have the pleasure of having Alex write guest blog posts while she is tackling this new adventure in Samoa! 

 

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

It’s Wild… Samoa

During my first week of my arrival someone asked, “How’s Samoa?” The only consensus of an answer was “Wild.” My name is Alex Rogers and I am currently serving in the Peace Corps in Salua, Manono in Samoa for the next two years. Samoa is made up of four islands: Upolu (where the nations capital, Apia, lies), Savai’i (the biggest island), Manono, and Apolima.

A typical day in Samoa you are certain: to see children under the age of twelve completely unattended by a parent and more than likely carrying a machete or shimming up a thirty-foot coconut tree because I said I was thirsty, asked if you have a Samoan boyfriend yet and where is the palagi (white person) (pronounced pah-long-ee) going, really lucky if you’re walking and DONT get chased by the estranged dogs or pigs.

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

Ironically, what most people know about Samoa is that Dwayne Johnson, aka “The Rock”, is from here and that one Disney princess Moana kept trying to escape the island by going past the reef. Aside from these notorious facts and wild everyday encounters, people should know the absolute treasures of Samoa. Most tourist souvenirs in the capital, Apia, have the saying “Beautiful Samoa” written somewhere located on it. There is no false advertisement there.

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

Every view of Samoa is breath taking. You can experience fifty shades of blue in the ocean while on a boat catching barracudas and look over to shore to see volcanic mountains on the horizon. Samoan landscapes are cultivated by a plethora of colorful tropical flowers and coconut trees as far as the eyes can see. The thing about Samoa that makes it so beautiful is the culture and the people.

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

The Samoan People

You meet someone and they have the most perfect smile and will either give you their last bite of food or give you their shirt. Hospitality means everything to Samoans. If you’re happy, they’re happy. Meanwhile they are preparing a meal for you from the pig they just killed, while prepping the umu (outdoor rock oven), while doing their laundry in a bucket, while watching a neighbor’s baby, while fanning your food, and while laughing and smiling the whole time. Nothing comes easy to Samoans and you can tell they work hard and have worked hard for centuries.

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

The Culture

Another vital aspect of the beautiful Samoan culture is singing and dancing. As a matter of fact, Samoans can sing and harmonize better than most acapella groups. Singing starts at an early age in church and is perfected with age (Religion plays a huge role in Samoan lifestyle. Sundays are for god, food, and naps). Everyone knows every song. The most graceful thing I’ve ever witness is a Samoan Siva (dance) (pronounced see-vah). Women move gracefully with their hands and hardly any movement from their feet. Whole routines are done flawlessly and are so enticing, you cannot look away. (Someone once told me the reason there’s not a ton of movement is because it’s so hot and women do not want to sweat while you dance because it’s not as pretty.)

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

This place is wild. People karate chop chickens for dinner, children do backflips into pools (with no life guard on duty), and they call eels, “catfish”. Behind this crazy island lies the most beautiful culture with beautiful people full of laughter. Do yourself a favor and make sure your next experience is where the wild things are.

These words are my own words and are not the Peace Corps

Alex in Samoa It's Wild!

 

 

 

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Comments ( 15 )

  • Anthony

    I’m fascinated by the Polynesian Islands and their culture. I love that you are experiencing the real and “wild” parts. So many people just sit in a resort and never experience what it is truly like to call the Island home. Thank you for your service to the peace corp and all the best for the future!

  • Yogita

    I love Samoa, the Pacific ocean is just beautiful. Loved reading your blog, lots of information. I agree with you, Samoans do sing beautifully and there cultural dancing is awesome too.

  • Marvi

    Samoa sounds lovely! It really surprised me that this was the island that inspired the movie Moana.. So cool! It sounds like a very peaceful and relaxing place to visit… Love the island life! Oh and please tell Alex that she has a very unique and engaging way of writing btw! Cheers! 🙂

  • Julien Mordret

    What a rare experience! Samoa is one of these lost pieces of tropical paradise we never hear about… I loved the little details you give about the daily life there. Had a good time reading this!

  • PossesstheWorld

    Samoa has been on my travel list for a long time and you have convinced my I need to move it up the list a bit. Definitely want to hang out with some of the “wild things”. Great post thanks for sharing

  • Anna

    Somoa has been on my bucket list for ages. It’s good to see some part of it in your post. I also enjoyed getting to know Alex through your post.

  • Carmen Baguio

    Your love of the culture, people, and land is evident through your words. The water looks beautiful! As a middle school teacher, I appreciate your work and know that you’re efforts make a difference!

  • Kareemah Ashiru

    Oh how I loved this post. I was felt dreamy while reading it. Unfortunately, I’m one of the ignorant people that wasn’t aware of this place until Disney made it popular and my husband Dwayne Johnson was featured. The people seem incredible and I would love to do a karaoke session with one of them.

  • Marta

    What a fascinating culture and place! Loved reading about this first- hand experience!!

  • umiko

    What an honest review of a place. I can see Alex enjoyed her times there, finding a lot of new things that she never saw in the U.S.

  • Meagan

    Aw, I love this!! This sounds like an amazing place to be, and – even better – and amazing people to get to know. This is definitely on our list of places to visit – thank you so much for this vivid and passionate account!

  • Taiss Together To Wherever

    Wow it really looks so beautiful like they say in their “advertisement.” The culture of singing and dancing is something truly amazing and beautiful itself. Sounds like a place i could stay forever! I know about the chasing of stray dogs from our time in Thailand :/…Anyway, great job to Alex for doing this and sharing her experience with us!

  • neha

    The island looks so pristine. I sometimes wish I lived somewhere like this 🙂 You have given a wonderful review of the place, I would love to visit here once at least. Just got added to my list of places to visit 🙂

  • Anushka

    The place looks so amazing & beautiful. I really like experiencing different culture and watching different kind of dance, as said by you they harmonize very well, I would really wish to go there and watch their cultural dance

  • Paula - Gone with the Wine

    I enjoyed reading this since I have a friend who was born in Samoa but I didn’t really know much about it. Looks beautiful! I hope I can visit Samoa someday and I would like to visit the national park over there as well.

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