Thursday, May 28, 2015

Perspective, huh

The last 2 weeks have been extremely challenging for me in so many ways, and there were days where simply getting out of bed felt like a huge achievement.
I'm car-less, Tui fell backwards at daycare and threw up - so we spent some time keeping an eye and being cautious and his behaviour lately has just put everyone to the test,  the weather has been SHIT, I haven't exercised in 2 weeks and in general, I just felt like shit,
...anyhow, tonight, I had been at work and was heading to LL's house to spend the night - but found out that my niece is still at school planning her Samoa event, so I thought, - sweet ---imam park up at maccas and do some work before we go home together.

I just felt suddenly, miserable.
Simply, felt sorry for myself so much that I wanted to ball my eyes out in the middle of macdonalds.
The only thing stopping me is the mascara I'm wearing doesn't run well and my niece will laugh in my face and will probably snapchat me crying.
so yeah ---while I was in the midst of my pity party for one, along with my double cheeseburger, this bloke walked towards me to sit at the empty table next to me.
I instantly recognised him from uni in the Waikachang. We used to get absolutely shitfaced in the halls and we used to celebrate getting C+ in our papers. He walks with a sorta limp.  Kagia ---you know who I'm talking about.
Anyhow, he looked a little worse for wear and now his slight limp is an obvious problem that he struggles to walk.
We had a good chat and he's very excited about a job interview tomorrow with one of the large Telco companies in the city.
After about half an hour - I realised that he didn't just live down the road. He simply, lived in the city ---somewhere -without a home,  thus his winter gear and handcarry.
Then, because I think I'm a like a Goddess in terms of Career advice, we ended up practicing his interviewing and discussed possible questions. The job is a call center type role but he is desperate for any job.  
After an hour,  he gets up to leave and we promise to keep in touch.

Now, -----at this point, I couldn't help my tears but this time, its tears of anger at myself.
for being so friggin ungrateful and selfish.

Here I am, I have a home, a family and a life that full of comfort. What have I really got to whine about?


sometimes, we just need to remove ourselves from our daily lives in order to appreciate what we have.
Thank you C. Thank you for the reminder that there is much to celebrate, '
that there are others with great struggles who deserve happiness
that my trials and tribulations pale in comparison
that we are surrounded by the goodness of the people around us.
manuia le aso,

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Reading the discussions at the EFKS meeting

and in particular, the financials, makes me want to vomit.

“For the information of everyone, the John Williams project has exceeded the approved budget from the 2012 annual meeting which was $2.5million.
“It has now cost us $3 million.” Le Mamea said that until the work for the Jubilee church is completed, there should be no more funds going towards John Williams building.
According to Le Mamea, $5million has already been spent on raw materials and other works for the Jubilee church.
The initial budget for the project is $7.2 million but Le Mamea fears that it might not be enough.
“At this stage we are looking at about $12 million for the Jubilee…the same goes with the John Williams, it’s not enough”.
Prior to the Chairman of the Finance Committee’s announcement of the overdraft, several representatives at the meeting voiced their concerns about the multi-million-tala projects.
Samoa Observer, 20th May

Oi Malia e,

 Millions are being mismanaged at this level while church members struggle to make ends meet.

I cannot wait for the day for more people to wake up and realise they don't need to GIVE so much of their money to sustain a church that no longer served its original purpose.

Wake up, wake up wake up.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Samoan language, Culture and more faikakalas

We are being encouraged this week to use the samoan language and upload it on social media ----even if you don't speak it ---even it is just to say "Talofa" or "Tofa"
Even if you're not Samoan (: Oui!

But in the midst of all this, I had a real deeeep thhink about the samoan language and it made me almost cry. oh wait, that was the wine effect but still, It made me reflect hard. And the more I looked at the ceiling, the more I felt so elated and pleased with with ummm, with how beautiful my language is.

What is important about my language? To me personally?
Being able to understand the samoan language has allowed me to appreciate my culture and the tofamamao / vision of my ancestors (oka! move over Whale Rider).
Our language is filled with meaningful references to our environment.
When we fail to resolve matters or have come up with poor solutions, someone may advise, "Tu'utu'u I le loloto lau upega" ...Cast your fishing net into the deep.
And it conjures an image of us fishing in the shallows and catching only avavas - which we all know are the first to feast on momos/shit.
But if you cast your upega into the deep - you will catch larger fish and be more successful.
I love this saying because it reminds me also that many a time, we tend to cut corners and do things half heartedly and we walk away with mediocre outcomes. But for those who cast their net into the deep, while it is hard work and there are more dangers/ obstacles, the rewards are plentiful.

I am blessed to know a little about my culture and I love sharing and celebrating this with others. I love seeing Samoans abroad - who have been raised in a palagi world make an effort.
I love that they do so, knowing full well the nature of many samoans who are fluent, that they can be absolute judgemental shitheads when someone struggles to speak.
Don't be deterred!

What really makes me happy (aside from a wholesome orgasmic... culinary meal) is seeing more and more people attempt samoan and seeing even more people support and cheer them on,

For my brothers and sisters who do speak the language, please don't be assholes to those who are trying. just sayin'.

Now that I have totally ruined the kindred spirited nature of my blog update,

I want to say a very merry joyful Happy Birthday to my darling sister, Lagipoiva who continues to wow us with her achievements but more so her love and kindred spirit,
For someone so young, this girl has done a lot of great things in her life.
We are extremely proud of you Lagipoiva.
Alofaaga mai ou aiga uma I Niu SIla, Ausetalia, America ma le vaitafe o Ioritana.

This is where we'll be next Wednesday :)

Friday, April 24, 2015

Pasifika Festival chitchat

There's been a lot of noise in Auckland about the Pasifika Festival.
Some prominent members of the Pacific community have expressed disappointment about the event. (google the news about it coz I aint got no time for that).

The thing is,
They have a reason to be disappointed. The Festival has shifted in focus and it is now an event run by ATEED, which is a council controlled organisation under Zthe Super City.
Pacific people no longer have much say in how the event is executed and so forth.
But the reality is, the event costs a heck of a lot of money and I'm also sitting here thinking:


Another question:

"How can we channel that anger and passion towards issues that are more relevant? Why don't we have these passionate voices booming inside school halls and from church pulpits about the betterment of communities?"

Next question.

"What stops you or me from celebrating our cultures in New Zealand, as we see fit?" Nothing, Nobody stops go ahead., celebrate. There are many parks, just set up your own platform and break out into song. Easily done."

"Why are we even having this discussion here when we have elected representatives who we should be lobbying and harassing and communicating with? They are our voice and they have the power to change things at the policy/strategic level"

"Why don't we treat Pasifika Festival as part of a week which we as Pac people use to raise issues relevant to us? Treating it like a symposium type event rather than a day of dance and song and eating authentic pacific food like errr, chopsuey from china?"

"Why aren't we alerting people to climate change, the high rates of domestic violence, the prevalence of rheumatic fever among our region, the atrocities occurring next door at West Papua and so forth?"

One of the things I found amusing were the people who were saying "Where is the information?" "Why wasn't I informed"

I think we are really shit at getting ourselves informed. We suck at connecting and being involved in the world we live in. OPEN YOUR EYES and get to know your world today. Talk to your kids and read what's on community notice boards, GET ACTIVE and GET INVOLVED.

okay, may I stop here before I get my own g-strangle in a Twist.

Have a fabulous weekend peoples

History of Pasifika Festival (posted on the Auckland Council website):
The Pasifika Festival began in 1992, and has grown into one of Auckland’s biggest cultural events.
The Pasifika Festival came to life through a joint initiative between the then Auckland City Council and the South Pacific Island Nations Development Association. The Festival aimed to bring Pacific Island communities closer together and to celebrate the richness and variety of their values, culture and lifestyles. The village concept was introduced in 1998 as a way of demonstrating each Pacific Island’s diversity.
History of Pasifika
  • 1992 – First Pasifika event
  • 1993 – A Pacific Island fashion show and theatre performances were introduced. Over 20,000 people attended in only the Festival’s second year.
  • 1995 to 2000 - An estimated 30,000 to 50,000 people attended each year.
  • 2001 – A record number of people attended the Festival. The initiative to perform an opening night concert, showcasing the Pacific talent scheduled to perform on the Festival day won the Creative New Zealand’s Creative Places Award in 2001.
  • 2002 to 2004 - Community stallholder numbers exceeded 300 for the first time. It’s estimated that over $1 million changed hands during the 2002 Festival.
  • 2007 celebrated the Festival’s 15th anniversary, and Pasifika won the Best Established Event Award from NZAEP (New Zealand Association of Event Professionals).
  • 2010 – Introduced a six-day programme, including a number of ticketed events at other venues, some of the best acts from performer auditions, and 'Po' - a tribal pop opera by Mika.
  • Since 2011, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) has delivered the Pasifika Festival with the essential support of Auckland’s Pacific Island community. A Village co-ordinator from each Pasifika Festival village is to create approved menus; only authentic dishes that showcase traditional cuisine from the respective island nations are chosen for these menus and presented by stallholders.

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED)

Pasifika is one of several major cultural events on Auckland’s major events calendar, forming part of Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) summer of events, and this year the Festival is being delivered by The Orange Group.
ATEED is an Auckland Council controlled organisation that aims to improve New Zealand’s economic prosperity, by leading the successful transformation of Auckland’s economy. ATEED facilitates tourism, major events, business and industry sector development and activities to attract investment.
Find out more about ATEED
To contact Pasifika organisers email