The late Mrs Isara used to refer to them as, "You are the cream of the crop, don't dissapoint".
Every young student used to dream of being in this school because it was supposedly the BEST school on the land. In fact, it's reputation as the best school is well known, because your parents may have attended it.
Except in their era, it was administered by white people in crisp clean uniforms and coke bottle bottom-rimmed glasses and spoke with the Queen's English.
A school where girls played hockey and boys had classy hairdos.
But most importantly, the hostel students woke up to the smell of bacon.
Whaaa???? Are you for real? Ioe. True story.
I bet you're thinking about Samoa College ...right?
Yes and no....I am referring to MANY MANY schools in the Pacific that went throught this same evolution - from bacon to chicken soup (without the chicken)...hereby called 'bacon-less colleges'
I thought it was just Samco too, until I met Education people in Gaudalcanal and Malaita...they too have their own dream schools that are now run down and without a sizzling bacon in sight.
For example, King George VI. Like Samoa College, it was administered by palagis to groom future leaders of the country. Most leaders of the country today went to King George. Another school to add to the list is Selwyn College in the North. Or Vaipouli in the Itu o Taane of Savaii.
Of course, this is only the ones I know, there are many more baconless colleges dotting the Pacific.
The worst thing about attending a baconless college is this: Everyone who attended it before you talk about the bacon.
So much that when you whine about the chicken-less soup, they look at you funny and say "You have no idea, that place is the best in the world".
So you drink your soup quietly...and watch the now derelict kitchen, where bacon once sizzled but is now simply a umukuka for boiling bananas and boiling whatever else is edible.
So,.. maybe we didn't have the bacon, or the squeaky clean classrooms, but it was my school and I came to accept it as it was, with its broken chairs, makeshift walls, overgrown with vaofefe and teachers who spoke the Queen's English....Queen of the Chunkle that is.
But it gave me hope nonetheless, ...hope that one day, I would get the hell out and smell the real bacon.
One Solomon Islander summed baconless colleges perfectly for me:
"Would you believe they had eggs for breakfast?"
Bacon AND now eggs? Baffling revelation indeed.
|A picture of the Samoa College Hockey team, who went to Fiji for a hockey tournament and most likely had bacon AND eggs for breakfast.|