Faga is what you picture paradise to be.
When you cast your eye only to the side where the sea is.
... Because on the other side, lies a Samoan village. Anything but paradise.
So look only to the ocean and hum loudly.
After Cyclones Ofa and Valelia, major construction machinery was brought in to errr umm, fix stuff up and as part of this, sand was mined (or quarried?) onto the surface ...(clearly my English stops at non-technical shit.)
Anyway, one of the very few economic benefits of the quarrying of this sand was the emergence of a million white pebbly shells that were perfect for making garlands (Ula sisi). There were so many and it meant that there were numerous more Faga children selling ulas during school hours.
$2 per lei. Cheap as shells. But like the construction workers and the flash machinery, the shells too became old news.
I did fall in love with a boy from Faga who was Maori. His father was brought there to fix stuff after the cyclone (again, more technical references) and unfortunately lover boy only spoke English. So our love affair was quite limiting. In fact, it was non- existent because I loved him and he didn't know I existed. It didn't matter, his father still told me I was the prettiest kid he's seen in Samoa since that morning.
But I knew we were meant to be because he told his mate Tavi who was in my class.
Who told my friend Apa who told my sister and then she told my brother
Who slapped me across the face
And so the romance ended.
Come to think of it, Tavi doesn't speak English either, even now.