California Love for Samoa

By Elizabeth Ah-Hi ,

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Joseph Calpert and his mother Katherine Calpert making the rounds at Fugalei markets.

Joseph Calpert and his mother Katherine Calpert making the rounds at Fugalei markets.

In the fresh produce area at the Fugalei Market, Dear Tourist spoke with Californians, Katherine Calpert and her son, Joseph Calpert who are two days into their two-week holiday. 

Joseph is playing tour guide to his mum on this trip, having been here before when he served his Mission in Samoa in 2012 for the L.D.S church. 

This is Katherine Calpert’s first time and she’s letting her son lead the way in showing her the sights and sounds saying,

“I wanted to come back to see what he has seen and meet the people that he met,” she said.

 “It’s so beautiful .The flowers and the trees, the green grass and the beautiful fales that people live in. Wonderful warm people, I mean everybody has been so friendly. I had to buy an ie lavalava because they are so pretty.” 

Katherine was looking around Fugalei markets and was taking a little longer because she couldn’t decide which one to get. 

“I just walked the whole market and just brought two of them because it’s so hard to choose”.

Katherine and Joseph are staying at Le Manumea Hotel and are more than satisfied with their stay so far there, 

“I love it,” says Katherine. 

“It’s just gorgeous and we stayed for their show last night and their big dinner and it was really fun. The dancers were great and beautiful and the food was delicious. Our room that we are staying in is just wonderful. Great air conditioning, comfortable bed and beautiful views from our room.”

Turning to Joseph, Dear Tourist asked him about his experience of serving in Samoa and he recalled that some of his first impressions evolved the longer he stayed in Samoa, he shares;

“I was looking forward to coming back to the food, I missed the food and the people the most.  Some of the food I didn’t like at first like oka and ulu but by the end I loved them. The first two days into my mission, you’d walk up to someone in the street  who was a stranger but they would just be super nice to you.”

As for Katherine, the Observer asked her for the final verdict, would she return? 

“Oh my goodness, yes! Absolutely it’s wonderful here. “

© Samoa Observer 2016

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