Driving down the road of Lotopa on a hot Samoan day, you might notice a small roadside stall selling all you need to beat the heat.
Alataua Talalelei serves cold, green coconuts and nice, cool, fruit salads to help you get through your day. The hardworking mother says that this stall goes a long way to helping her family out.
“This is the work that we are doing and the money I make goes towards taking care of my family,” Alataua told the Village Voice.
“My family is doing all right right now and we are making enough to make ends meet. The only reason people live in poverty is when they refuse to work hard.”
“If you need money then you have to make your way out of the house to look for it. How else do you think your family will survive?”
Alataua says that the refreshment stall has provided for the family for four years and it’s still doing really well for them.
“My family started this small market stall back in 2012,” she said.
“This stall has helped my family so much and we always thank the Lord for the customers he brings to us. We have good days and bad. On good days, I am able to sell everything and make approximately $500 on that day.”
“It really depends on what I have for sale on that day. If I don’t get many green coconuts then I won’t make much money.”
“When I sell fruit salad along with the green coconuts, then my earnings increase so much.”
Asked what her motivation is for working so hard every day, Alataua says that the increasing cost of living is motivation enough for any family.”
“I agree that the cost of living is increasing, but that’s no excuse to sit around and just complain about it,” she said.
“People only suffer if they don’t stand up and do something about the problem. Yes the food stuff in the shop will be expensive but if you don’t work then how do you expect your family to eat?”
“You have to find a solution for the problem rather than just dwell on it.”
Asked for a message for Samoa, Alataua said to stop being lazy.
“My message to everyone who just sits around and waits for handouts, try and find ways to help your family,” she said.
“If you have the mindset that money will just fall out of the sky or hop into your pocket then you need to change the way you think. Sitting down won’t feed your family.”