Apolima or chronic Samoan domestic eternity

For: Laura Berdejo (text and photos)
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There was once a life of its own island in the middle of the southern Polynesian. Once upon a time Apolima, Samoan island of the archipelago a horseshoe shape where I could not always get, and where no one could always go out ... just had an entrance between two rocks with ocean currents coming and going thanks to the vagaries of wind and sea. Inhabited by 88 People, several domestic and wild animals, and vegetation, Apolima was also a time machine: it stretched, it shrank, one was trapped in its tall palm trees, not knowing when you could go to sea.

What I came to make Apolima? I came two days with a Samoan team environment ministry to do some research on the local community, but time is stretched in a sort of bizarre elasticity and stayed four days or ten. We were lucky and managed to enter the first, the sea was calm, but we could not leave when we wanted to account for the waves and had to stay a couple of days. Probably there was little danger, could have gone dizzy and travel with the stomach Apolima hectic but as time is another, decided to stay, without. In Manono time progresses in a circular, as I told in another interview, but no en Apolima advances. There. We spent days were hours, which were weeks, they were years, playing volleyball, collecting shells, picking the flowers, lying in the grass and feeling all, from the lawn to the sea.

The man's best friend

If access to visitors to the island is not easy: sometimes you have to give up, turn around and return, for those who live there the situation is inversely interesting: sometimes have to stay several days not knowing when they will leave waiting for better weather, to calm down a water vacuole or clear sky announced a few hours of calm ocean. Maybe that's why the inhabitants of the only people there have developed as household special as the love of pets or improvement of the kitchen and local crafts.

We spent days were hours, which were weeks, they were years, playing volleyball, collecting shells, picking the flowers, lying in the grass and feeling all, from the lawn to the sea.

Samoa is a country of pet, most dogs are wild, bite walkers and people shy away not so much the size of its bite as the insufferable nine rabies vaccines that each victim has to get back and rest a couple of weeks in horizontal plane. Hardly anyone has cats, no lizards, birds and hamsters and even less, with that of rats that there. Some houses have guard dogs and families raise a race of giant pigs and chickens basically culinary purposes, but nothing else. However differs Apolima: families have cats who eat, stop and sleep in the common rooms, lapdogs grazing in the field of volleyball, cages bats feed on bananas and papayas. There are even cocks and hens of various sizes feature and spend the day hanging around the kitchen and playing with children. "Do not look at the roosters in the eyes" I recommend to get to Samoa, but are like dogs Apolima, unable to attack.

Wonder of Samoan, when we knew that we would not be able to leave the island on which it was intended, nobody told anyone, no one shook even a mustache disruption of plans and not a single citizen made a move beyond the stretch of arms and Comment: let´s go for dinner then (translated, clear). The village women, lively, began preparing another dinner more and expedition mates giving the finished work and opening the summer they lay down to rest or to the beach to find shells for garnish. And the truth is that Apolima, on account of the difference of the currents, had shells in other Samoan islands can not be found.

Parliamentary life and nirvana

In those days no time, confinement, communion with the environment and relax all vital, while we experienced a kind of nirvana Polynesian, the apolinesas told me how his oven, the umu, engineering masterpiece of white goods, with three levels of cooking, and also told me how to make a carpet: first uproot the palm leaves and dried in the sun, later rolled in the direction of the ribs and then the subject ceases to change shape with stones or any weight on the ends. When the filaments are ready women get together and braiding.

The matai asked a very serious, with the attitude of a monarch who sends to seek their fortunes to their offspring, what we do now, after Apolima as if, in effect, had a before and after.

This moment is beyond the twisted, is a local assembly. Neither children nor men can participate and leave suggestions these days, ideas and problems that can be raised to matai and become habits, or duties and obligations of community life. Meetings of Samoan women about work suggest the life of the Victorian woman preparing to function in society, to Louise May Alcott Little Women and one of the most solid sources of what is known as Samoa fa'a, or "Samoan way of life" which is the right de facto governing life of the archipelago. The days went by elastic got to see the women finished carpets, cestas e ILis (fans).

One morning the interpreter told me with an expression of grief identified a residue far, “we are leaving today”, This does not mean anything, because they could spend twelve hours or even days until we tried to throw us into the sea. But it seemed that was serious: “we must say goodbye to the matai”, added, so then we say goodbye to the boss who both helped us with our investigation a few days or centuries before. The matai asked a very serious, with the attitude of a monarch who sends to seek their fortunes to their offspring, what we do now, after Apolima as if, in effect, had a before and after. I do not know what to say so I said "work" but I'm not sure I convinced him to interpret my answer so I probably invented more. She gave a lengthy explanation and the truth is that, today, some days, and years later, I trust that matai received a response at the level of the dignity of anyone who at some point has been abducted by the time machine and created apolinesa friendship with nature, was lying looking at the sky without time, used a three-story oven and has learned to expect the sea.

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Comments (3)

  • Ann

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    Almost does not envy. What to do to go there and spend a few days seem years, or centuries… or a couple of eternities, o tres?

    Answer

  • enrique

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    Is it true that time is elastic?. That place is it with bats caged . Sera ¿oz? . Contenplativa life of Samoan women and women of the Victorian novel represent a relaxed lifestyle, simple, and bottom Majica. Doroti that like living in a parallel reality. Will that give a space-time portal to the world of dreams. A carefree place ,arena blanca , forest green. Beautiful place away from reality for a harbor in stony and aqueous. Hopefully someday we can go . Some day with calm waters. Very nice article. In good time

    Answer

  • Rosabela

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    Overcoming from time to time to the good work that we have become accustomed.
    There will have to go

    Answer

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