Saturday, June 30, 2007

Brief Visit Home

That's right! For those few of you who don't already know yet, i will be heading back to Vashon for one week and one week only. I arrive back on Vashon late on Tuesday night July 10th, and I head back home to Samoa Tuesday the 17th.

My grandma Steyh recently passed away. It was not something I was expecting or prepared for (unlike when Grandpa Lloyd passed away at 102 years old), so I am flying home for the funeral. It's going to be a crazy week and I hope to see as many people as possible while I am back. I might not get any sleep and I might welcome the flight back to Samoa, but it will still be nice to get to see all my family who flew in for the funeral, and to see all of my friends.

If I don't end up hanging out with you, I am sorry! I will try! Hope this finds everyone well, and I hope to see you soon.

In the meantime I am trying to pack and figure out what to bring home with me. What don't I really need the last 6 months i am here? Thats a tough decision!

Until next time.... which might just be in the Northern Hemisphere on the other side of the pond.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Zone Track Meet

This last week I headed back to school and right back into the thick of things once again. On Friday we had the Zone Meet, where all schools on Savaii competed in a track meet. Unfortunatly we only had about 2o students competing because the rest of our students and teachers were doing a Festivities in Apia with our sister school. A select few got to stay behind and compete in the events. As I am the Head Athletic Trainer, that included me as well.

Me and the students and our ride to the meet. 4 other students just got out of the back before this pic was taken, so it was nice and crowded. We arrived singing songs and clapping loudly, like any good sports team should do. We left the school around 6am, still pitch dark. The meet ended around 2pm, blazing hot.

My team. 3 girls, not enough for a relay. The one girl without the uniform on was just visiting. We have a decent Senior boys 4x4 team, in spirit of when I ran. :) And we have a fairly good 1500 m boy runner too. We'll see how they improve as they learn better form and have more training.

Most field events aren't really taught proper form. A few schools have coaches that know proper throwing and jumping form. We have no students competing in Field events this year because of the festivities. This athelete is from Amoa College, doing the scissor kick over the highjump. At least she cleared it!

None of my students are in this picture, but I wanted to show what the start to the 100meter looks like. A lot different from in the states. The track is all grass, lined with oil for lanes. Sprinters don't use blocks and very few of them actually have shoes on.

One of my athletes on the left. Came in 2nd place in the heat and 2nd place overall in the 100m. They run the athletes according to age. So, juniors compete against only juniors and so on. There are 3 levels: Juniors (ages 14-15) , Intermediate(ages 16-17), and Seniors(ages 18-21). This student is in the Intermediate age group.

In other news I am back in Apia again for another round of medicine to kill off the malaria. After this I will be done. I will still be tired for awhile, but nothing too serious. Until next time...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Pictures of Bryan's Visit

Waiting at the airport for Bryan to arrive.

Bryan and me at Satuiatua Beach Resort

Bryan on the boat.

Bryan cooking for me. I got him trained well.

Pics of Water Falls with Bryan

Yeah. We saw many wonders and many spectacular things, but it seems like out of all our adventures and whatnot, we ended up spending a lot of time at waterfalls. So, I have set aside a whole post just for those pictures showing our water endevors.

Bryan on the new walk up to the waterfall near my place. Instead of walking along the cow pastures and then climbing now, a new road follows along the river.
The waterfall near my place. Unlike when mom and dad visited, it's actually running.
Bryan standing under the waterfall.
The falls surrounding the pool area.
Bryan relaxing in the pool.

Sliding Rocks

Bryan sliding down the main one of many waterfalls at the Sliding Rocks

Second smallest set of waterfalls.

Looking down the barrel. One set of falls go into like a devils punch bowl, though not really as scary.

Bryan preparing to slide down the last set of falls.
Me at the falls.
Tim joined us for the day at the sliding rocks.

Pics Continued

Bryan sitting at the back of my house smoking a nice cigar.

Bryan taking a swing at Cricket. Note the bat is 2 sided. Samoan bats are 3 sided.

The field at St Joes College that we were playing softball and cricket on.

Laupama and the girls, Seti and Lesa saying goodbye to Bryan at the boat terminal.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Bryan's Gone, I have malaria, and other news

Yeah, you all read that right. Apparently I brought something back with me from Vanuatu other than kava and handicrafts. I brought malaria back with me. I was on anti-malaria meds too. Rest assured I cannot pass it to others here in Samoa. It is passed only through a specific mosquito that we do not have in this country. It comes and goes in waves. One day I feel 100% and then the next day I am miserable. It's not as bad as dengue, and I am on the medicine to get rid of it now, so overall I am doing a lot better.

Bryan left less than a week ago. I will try and post pictures later this week. It was a blast having him visiting. He really got along with all my PC friends and got to experience life as a PC. Not sure if he was really liking it after the hour long bus ride from Satuiatua smashed between two very large people while I tried to sit on his lap, but his knee started hurting... But he enjoyed hanging out with my friends and sharing stories.

I think one of the funnest things I did with him was going to the sliding rocks. There is a place with a ton of waterfalls with huge pools at the end, natural water slides. It had been raining fairly hard earlier in the week, and since it was in the middle of the day, we had the place to ourselves. I only slid down the smaller ones, but I got a lot of great pictures of the falls and Bryan sliding over a few of them.

School has started back up again in full swing. Because of the malaria however, I will be missing a few days. The biggest news at school is that I will be getting a new lab. The church donated money to our school to build new computer and science labs. The project will start around the end of November... so while i get ready to leave.

Alright. I think that was all the energy I can muster for now. Promise to post pictures from Bryan's visit soon. Until then.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Bryan Arrives Soon

I think even as I type this my brother is on his way here. I think he's still in LA, but it's close enough. He is coming in with the new group of PC as well.

Tradition ensues that with each new group that arrives a group of willing volunteers dress up in their best puletasi's and head on down to the airport at the hiddeous hour of 3:30am to greet them with smiles and flowers. Since my brother is on the same plane as them, I will be one of those unnaturally cheery happy volunteers that greet them when they arrive. Then my brother and I are ditching the group and heading straight for Savaii since I still have classes... actually mid-terms. The first 2 weeks of Term 2 include studying for and taking the midterms, go figure.

I have also been elected by my principal as the Head Trainer for the Athletics (Track and Field) team. Wow. I feel so priveleged and special. Although we didn't have practice today because it was raining. It wasn't my decision I'll say that. Not running in the rain? I'm from Washington for crying out loud. If we didn't run in the rain, we would NEVER practice. That's why I am here. To toughen them up I guess.

Being back isn't especially exciting. I don't really have a lot to report actually. It's been back to business and life in kua as usual. I gave some of the kava from Fiji to Viliamu and now all of the pastors are bugging me for some. I told them if I ever headed back that way again, I would bring it back as gifts... though I don't think I will be going back that way.

Alright. Office is full today. I should share some internet time...until next time with my brother...