Can you walk around with no shoes, no shirt, and it really is no problem (like the country song)
· Can you weigh 300 pounds and it’s normal
· Is Carl’s Jr. the “place to be” or the date location of choice.
· Do men wear skirts (called lava lava).
· Do looks not matter. You can get away with wearing just about anything- even an orange moo-moo to work.
· Do most of the students look like the Pillsbury Dough Boy/Girl.
· Are people allowed to smoke on public buses.
· Have the school bell be an empty oxygen tank hit with a metal stick.
· Everyone, even kids, have a tattoo. You are questioned if you don’t have one.
· Does it take 10 seconds to do your hair.
· Is the literal translation of “white people,” “cloud bursters.”
· Do students ask why your “eyeballs” are blue.
· Can you get weekends out if you’re in jail for committing a crime.
· Are family members buried in your front yard. People and dogs take naps on top of the gravestones. Creepy. Maybe it helps them to feel close to those who have gone before them?
· Does business professional attire include flip flops.
· Do umbrellas have three purposes, to protect against rain, sun, and dogs.
· Can all the armpits of all your t-shirts get ruined because of the amount of sweat your body produces.
· You need to have a stick and a rock, before you go on a walk, in case a bunch of dogs come after you.
· Do the students have grey hair.
· Is there one main road and you can’t go faster an 30 mph.
· Can it be pouring down rain one minute and sunny the next
· See dead, fried, squished frogs on the road.
· Do the public buses sound like a night club.
· Get hit by a falling coconut- it’s almost happened, a close call once.
· Have high school kids shut down a road because of a fight.
· Have a fight happen in your classroom (ask my roommate Lauren).
· SWEAT ALL THE TIME. When you eat, when you sleep, when you shower, when you teach, etc. And I’ve come to terms that while I’m here, I will be sweaty and smelly all the time!
· Do people get excited because it sea worm season.
· See bats that are five feet long.
· Do students have gold fillings on the front of their teeth that make them look like pirates.
· Will you see 20 people crammed in the bed of a pick-up truck.
· Learn to live without internet and a TV.
· Listen to Justin Beiber in Samoan.
· Listen to a 45 minute prayer.
· Can you never be hugged and kissed by enough sweaty Samoans.
· Can you work out and have lizards/geckos, frogs, flying bugs, and cockroaches join you and have bugs get stuck in your sweat.
· Will students throw a dead cockroach at you.
· Have I learned to hold my breath when I use a public bathroom.
· Have over 50% of your students fail your class because they are at the level of an 8th grader and are expected to graduate in May.
· Does it take 5 times to actually get a phone call through.
· Nothing starts on time.
· If something doesn’t get done today it can get done next month.
· Do you go to bed at 8 pm on a Friday night because there is nothing to do and you started drinking at 6 pm.
· Can you learn to love the students who made/make your life a living hell.
· Can you have your anxiety replaced by a stillness and peace.
· I have learned to flexible and patient. Some things really are worth the wait and not much goes according to plan.
· Have I learned to reprioritize the important things in life.
· Have I learned to look at life in a new perspective.
· Has my hair grown about 4 inches- I have some nice grow out!
· Is being disconnected and less distracted from all the material and little things has/is showing me to life live more simply.
· Literally not sweat the small stuff. (Notice the theme of sweat!)
· Am I am so proud to teach all 140 of my students and watch them learn. Especially journalizing transactions. Yay accounting kids!
· Have I learned that I am a strong and capable person.
· Have I learned that I am making a difference, even if my kids tell me I am torturing them!
· Am I learning to be more comfortable expressing my feelings and learning to become sensitive.
· Have I realized that I need to ignore what other people think and live my life the way I want to even if it means learning the hard way.
· Have I learned that I live in a fascinating world and country and I am so lucky to be alive.
· Have I learned to find the beauty in every situation- especially the really crappy ones.
· Have I learned how spoiled we are as Americans.
· Have I learned that everything happens for a reason.
· I’ve realized that I really do hate running!
· Have I been shown how amazing and beautiful American Samoa and its people are.
· I’ve learned that I am living a life worth living.