Living off the plantation is a blessing
Meet James Faasuaga of the village of Pata Falelatai.
When Village Voice caught up with him, his wife and three young children, he was trying to put a roof over their small faleo’o by using laupola.
When asked about how life is in the village Mr. Faasuaga said it’s hard but in life we all start from the bottom making our way up.
“As you can see we are working on our house because we have just moved here,” he told the Village Voice.
“We used to stay on the mainland (aai) at my wife’s family but it was too crowded so we decided to move here inland to start afresh.
“It’s not fancy but it’s a start and like everyone else, we’re at the bottom making our way up.
“Life is hard we all know that but we have to work in order for our families to develop.”
Mr. Faasuaga said some people complain about the struggles they are facing but they don’t work which is worse.
“You can’t say you are poor and yet you just sit at home and do nothing and expect money to fall from the sky,” he said.
“No we have to work for it as it says in the bible while our wives bear children.
“But nowadays both the husband and the wife stay home and keep having children and yet they don’t have the resources to feed them.
“Both my wife and I don’t have jobs but there’s a difference. I have a plantation and that is how I look after my family.
“I use the fruits of my plantation to get money to put my children through school and we are okay. My children have never missed a school day and there is never a day that we don’t have food because I work.
“I know that if I don’t work, then my family will suffer.”
The father of three went on to say that even with the high cost of living, Samoan people are used to it.
“If the cost of living doesn’t go up our country would never have any flash buildings like the ones in Apia and our people will still be living the old life,” he said.
“We are Samoans and we are used to it. Yes some things might be too expensive but it’s life and we have to live according to what we have at the moment.
“We cannot complain because it won’t change a thing but we just have to live according to the standard of living that we have nowadays.
“So to me I’m okay, my kids and wife are okay as long as we are able to wake up the next day we are okay through the love of God.”