Our last day in Samoa. At 11:58 pm tonight we will be on a plane to LA.
I thought I would catch you up a little on what has been going on, since we have been to busy and without internet.
Tuesday was Cale's faamavae lunch at his school that I mentioned before. I was invited as well. That night I was up until 1 am working on the textbook project.
Wednesday the school magazine was finally delivered. It was successfully printed! I do take issue with the quality thought. I specifically asked them how they would be printing it and they said they were going to print it off the laser printer they showed me. However, they definitely photo-copied it. The also told me that they would trim the white edges off the cover so it would have full-bleed and they did not. Finally, there was the issue of the number that they printed. Originally they claimed it would be $25 tala per magazine. For our $3,800 that was about 150 magazines. Then they told one of the ministers at the school they would print for $9 tala each. That would be more than 400 magazines. Later then went back on that deal and said the price would be $25 each, but they would make a present of more. The more was never specified. Even later they told the principal they would print 300 for oru $3,800. However, when the finally arrived there were only 200. Whatever, it is done.
After school I went to visit with Ryan and work on the textbook more.
Wednesday night was the night before Prize-Giving at my school. Traditionally, the Prize-Giving committee stays at the school practically all night sorting and wrapping the prizes. I passed the grunt work of the prize-giving program off to the school secretary this year, but she still asked if I could be the person who was there that night to add in the sponsors, as she had to sew uniform puletasi for people to wear to the prize-giving the next morning. I told her to tell the committee to come get me from my house when they were ready. I knew if it was anything like last year, it was going to take all night to figure out what prizes were going where and last minute donations would arrive late in the night. I finally went over to the school at 9 pm to help wrap prizes and wait for the donor list. At 2 am I was still at the school trying to print out all the programs. A member of the prize-giving committee insisted I go home, even though I wasn't finished. She said that she would be in early in the morning with the school secretary and finishe printing and folding.
When I arrived at 7:30 am on Thursday the prize-giving committee member wasn't there. So the school secretary and I printed and folded until after 9 am. The Prize-Giving started at 8 am. So we missed the beginning. The prize-giving went off without a hitch. The DUX (what they calle the valedictorian here) was also my top computer studies student. I distributed letters of recommendation and flash drives to all my Year 13 students.
Thursday night our host family came to our house with food and we all ate together. That was nice.
Friday was Cale's Prize-Giving. However, I missed that because I spent the day holed up in my computer lab finishing the textbook project. While I was in the room I heard applause and singing and wandered outside to discover I missed the final school assembly of the year. Some students as they were leaving stopped into the computer lab and gave me some necklaces.
After school all the teachers were taken out by the principal. One of the teachers made a speech thanking me and they gifted me an envelope with $200 tala in it. Funny story about the lunch. I orginally had my exit interview for the Peace Corps scheduled at 3pm that day, but we didn't even leave for the lunch until 1 pm. Luckily Cale called to say that we were rescheduled for Monday. However, after we had been at the venue for a while with no food, the principal's wife decided to use my now rescheduled meeting (she knew it was rescheduled) to try to hurry along to food, saying that Sara has to leave soon. However, they only brought out food for the principal and me, which foiled her plan and put me in an awkward position of telling him that I didn't have to leave when he tried to give me a ride right after we finished eating.
That night we had dinner with John at the Yacht Club.
Saturday we came into Apia and shopped for souvenirs. Then at 3pm we went to the Charge's house for Thanksgiving. It was beautiful. I ate turkey and mashed potatoes and green beans, and stuffing and corn and pumpkin pie and apple pie. And I was stuffed. Afterwards Cale went out with some other volunteers but I was tired and overfull, so I hung around the peace corps office.
Sunday we packed up all our stuff and I met with my principal at the school to give him all the details on the computer labs. I made a couple of "how-to" sheets for the computers and saved it to the desktop of the server. Then we packed up everything that was left into a taxi and came into Apia. We spent the night at Hanna's.
Now it is Monday morning. We still have our exit interview and Cale is repacking all our bags for maximum efficiency. Tonight is dinner at Italiano's and then taxi to the airport where we will most likely be seen off by our principal's and the family of one of Cale's students.
See ya'll in America.