What makes a man thinks he is the moon?

By Lumepa Apelu 22 July 2016, 12:00AM

From the moon, we are the dotted group of islands with one annoying criminal, that the police or whoever the guards of the gates to paradise cannot catch. 

And of all the wars in the nether worlds and the cruel injustices amongst them, we are viewed from the moon, dotted and ugly too. 

Forget thus the struggling women and men in the villages trying to make a buck between the busy Asian influx of supermarkets. Forget also the beach fales which communicate with the coconuts when the social media goes haywire with criticisms against our own people’s funny ways. 

Let’s not mention either the violent war of poverty on our “poor children” infested streets. Those things are not fun, wild and free. They are small and unnoticeable, like our islands from the far away moon.

I am sometimes a loner in my woman head. When too much noise rackets on about opinions that do not make a difference of whatever difference they are intended to be for, I wonder at the sanity of the opinionated. 

I wonder what makes someone think of himself or herself wholly awesome and correct, when the simple and earnest livelihood of someone else is dependent on that one wrong thing they said. What makes a man thinks he is the moon?

But we have judges in the world of progress. 

And every judge has an audience. For the moment, the judges for our islands are mostly our own people. From managing beach fales, I know from my hearty experience, that the worst judges are our own people. We can never be enough for each other. 

We are proud citizens of a coconut filled coastline. We are indebted to our ancestors to somehow hold up the fight for being error free, esteemed and I guess clean from toe to head because we do not like foul smelling things at all. 

And we convince ourselves that if we are good judges, then we have done the world a great deal of wonderful. Kudos. I hope so too.

But if you watch the tourists that come here, like I still do, most of them return. They return to us because we are who we are expected to be. We are loving and generous. We are green and refreshing. We are beautiful inside out. We give more than we can afford. We hold out for the tourists, even the horrible ones. We do not do it just for the money. 

We embrace being hosts of a beautiful country because it is innate knowledge, that giving comes back in ten folds. So to sway from our true nature as a hospitable people is just impossible. We just have to find out how to bless the foreign systems with our gift of generosity. 

But the question of the prisons and the escaped prisoner who pains all our eyes on the news is agitating to the earnest worker on the beach, the policy writer in the offices, the understaffed hospital, and the prison guards too.

For that one prisoner has turned all eyes away from the highlight of the sunrise, the sweat of honest work, the need to focus on excellence in all things. 

 He has brought all evil deeds against the mornings when tourist operators wake from five in the morning till after midnight, and sometimes not to sleep because a tourist forgot to mention an allergy problem.  

That one prisoner brought back the meaninglessness of a tsunami that destroyed so many villages and killed so many loved ones, belonging to you and some to me. When I see him on television, the Jesus Christ in me wants to remind of the thieves who stole from the dead on the day of the tsunami. Those thieves, spent hours picking the pockets and suitcases of the people who were lying there lifeless, waiting to be found by their families. 

Such a filthy existence of our humanity is everywhere on this planet. The criminals of any society are the thieves of a poor man’s hard work. To be touched or untouched by it is irrelevant to the one who wants to live and make life meaningful. 

I know from my own struggle and from watching my loved ones that if we want to survive a tragedy, we must focus on the living first. In these hard times for our country, and in the speedy demands of progress, remember to bring with you, your compassionate Samoan head most times and I beg of you to please remind me of mine.

Our opinions may flourish from mountains to valleys and bring the milk and honey, then make us flow. But if it boils down to making life better for you, me and the crippled tourism industry, please look again when you cross the road. Whether you are living overseas or locally, your intentions are never effective, if you speak only to be heard. We are bombarded by change all around us. Now is the time to hold the storm. We are not the moon, but we are the heart of the earth.

By Lumepa Apelu 22 July 2016, 12:00AM

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