Samoa is blessed.
Futivanu Paeali’i believes when a person doesn’t have money, they can always live off the land or the sea.
The 30-year-old from Solosolo relies on the land and sea for a living.
When they need seafood, he goes out fishing. When they are short of cash, he sells taro and bananas on the road. They also depend on his siblings and families living overseas.
“I don’t know why people are struggling to live,” he said. “I think they are eager to buy expensive food when it’s the same with what the land and see provides for us.
“To be honest, Samoa is a country with a lot of resources for living.
“The problem is people are too lazy, they are more attracted to the palagi lifestyle and they make things harder for themselves.
“Why do we even bother trying to find food and money when they are just buried beside our houses?
“You know, I am forever thankful that we have crops and the sea to depend on when we are hungry. It’s a blessing.”
Futivanu says that village life can be as simple as you want it to be. You can catch or grow your own food to feed your family.
“As you can see I am just looking for some fish to cook with coconut for tonight’s meal,” he said.
“That’s how easy life is for us in the village, if we want something to eat then we can go to the land or the sea. Working hard will make life a little easier for you.”
He went on to say that his mother is his motivation.
“It’s my sick mother that I’m always worried about,” he said.
“This is why I prefer working at home using the land and sea so I can be close to her.
“My mother is one of those elders we are protective of. She is the type that is easily affected by diseases especially from food.
“This is also one reason why I catch some fish and have some taro cooked for her everyday because I don’t want her to eat food from the shop.
According to Futivanu, he makes his way to the sea every morning and evening.
“The best time for fishing is in the morning and evening, and that’s why I’m also here at this time,” he said.
“I don’t get tired of coming out twice a day because I do it for my mother.
“Taking care of my mother is what I do, the rest, like family fa’alavelave, electricity and water bills, are met by my siblings overseas.
“If we need money we call them and they help us out.”