Day 2: Standing Strong (Inspired by Fatu ma Futi)

Fatu ma Futi. The legendary inspiration.  (Ignore the blurry coconut trees and moving grass. I was passing by in my car, but this proves how majestic and strong these rocks are.)

Fatu ma Futi. The legendary inspiration.
Fatu is in the back and Futi is closer to shore.(Ignore the blurry coconut trees and moving grass. I was passing by in my car, but this proves how majestic and strong these rocks are.)

 

Driving down Tutuila’s coast
You’ll find two big seastacks
Amongst the coral
Surrounded by the ocean

Standing strong

Unmovable and beautiful
These two lovers
Fatu and Futi
Magnificent in their own way

Standing strong

Some say they were sailing
from Samoa i Sisifo for days
Nearly at the shores of Tutuila
They died and turned to rock

Standing strong

Another legend
Tells of Fatu going fishing
And a shark about to attack
Until Futi came to seek her love

Standing strong

She distracted the shark
To save her lover
In their places
They turned to rock

Standing strong

A legend this might be
But it is a story of love
A story of sacrifice
A story of conquering fear while

Standing strong

Advertisements

We Built This Island…

Ironically enough, I just had a conversation with a friend about why I’d choose the island life over the city life any day. I’m not a city girl. I never was nor will I think I ever will be. Some say it’s because I lived in the wrong cities, which I disagree with because I loved the places I lived. It just wasn’t enough for me to call home. I had all my wants taken care of but not all of my needs.

My island home where I lack nothing is American Samoa found in the South Pacific region. It’s small, extremely small. I love it. There are so many beautiful things about where I live. If you came to visit my little rock, you would understand why I love it so much. Unless you’re big on shopping then you would probably complain all the time because shopping here totally blows. Then again, what do you expect from island living?

Even when it's stormy, it's still a beautiful day.

Even when it’s stormy, it’s still a beautiful day.

Yes. I live in a modernized society, but my culture is still very rich and strong. Although there are many advances happening in our island, I am proud that my people still strive to hold true to the three key values of the Samoan culture: God, family, respect. These three values are my culture’s driving force. These three values are what my island, my home, my life is built on.

Bi-polar weather is not my friend here on the islands. It could be extremely sunny in the morning and totally stormy in the afternoon. You never know what you’re going to get throughout the day. I give props to our meteorologists for trying to predict our crazy weather.

One of the worst parts of island life is the craters on our roads we call "potholes"

One of the worst parts of island life is the craters on our roads we call “potholes”

 

Another part of island life I have issues with is fa’alavelaves. I applaud Samoans for always wanting to give a helping hand, but requiring so much from those who have so little is ridiculous. Sometimes I feel as if some of our people give big amounts because of pride in their family and they want to look better than others.

Don’t get me wrong, I love giving to others and helping out my family. My grandma has always told us to make sure we always take care of our family no matter what. If you know Samoan families, that doesn’t mean it stops at your siblings. Samoan families include up to third sometimes even farther generations. Anyways, my point is I feel the system is being abused and taken advantage of. It either needs to go back to what it was intended to be or taken out all together because all these faalavelaves are putting Samoans in debt.

Other than that, I love my simple island life. I may not look like an island girl, but I was born a Samoan island girl and I will most likely leave this earth as a Samoan island girl. I love my Amerika Samoa.

Props go to my cousin Jenny for taking this photo of me and my Polynesian bush hair. Check out more of her work on her Facebook page - Maniā Photography

Props go to my cousin Jenny for taking this photo of me and my Polynesian bush hair. Check out more of her work on her Facebook page – Maniā Photography

*exits singing* We built this city, we built this city on rock and roll.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/prompt-built-city/

Weekly Photo Challenge: “Greener” Perspective

I wasn’t planning on doing this challenge initially. While thoroughly enjoying a lot of the other bloggers posts on perspective, I figured why not try it out. This is actually my first challenge post ever.

One of my favorite parts of being born and raised in a Polynesian culture is learning how to make food with anything including cooking with leaves

One of my favorite parts of being born and raised in a Polynesian culture is learning how to make food with anything including cooking with leaves

In this photo, I chose to focus on the leaves that the laulau (fish in taro leaf) is wrapped and cooked in. The ti leaves, which are focused on in the photo on the left cut out from the main image on the right, are used in so many ways. It can be used to make clothes, for cooking or even for massages. I remember growing up my grandma would make me collect ti leaves to use when massaging my brothers when they were sick because the coolness of the leaf absorbs the heat from the body.

That’s beside the point. The point of this photo is if I had only shown the ti leaves you would’ve probably thought “why is she showing pictures of some bush/grass?” It’s the type of leaf I was focused on. It’s sleek but strong texture makes it the perfect insulator. This leaf is not just a regular leaf. It’s part of something bigger and very delicious.