Thursday, July 14, 2011

I'm here, I'm happy, and I'm having the time of my life

Talofa Lava from Nu’uuli Vocational Technical High School in American Samoa. The past two days have been a whirlwind of excitement, exploration, information overload, beauty, and a heck of a lot of jet lag. I could write a book right now to tell you all that has happened since my departure on Sunday morning, but instead I’ll do a few bullet points and add a few pictures to really show you how much of Paradise with a capital P I am in!
-  Departure: Of course it was hard. I cried. But, I didn’t set off the security alarms, so that made me happy!
- Arrival in LAX: A fellow World Teacher, Heidi, was on the same flight as me. We collected our heavy bags, hopped on a shuttle, and dropped our stuff off at the hotel. My friend Emily from Elmhurst, who is currently living in Los Angeles, picked me up, and we spent the afternoon and early evening together.  It was just what I needed to spend my last day in the USA. I ate my first In-N-Out, hiked the mountain with the Hollywood sign (I’m still sore!), and ate my weight in frozen yogurt for dinner. Emily is an amazing, inspirational, and beautiful person. I am so lucky to have her for a friend!
Delicious and extremely cheap!

Hot, sweaty, and happy after we made it to the top!

- Arrival in Hawaii: Instead of spending my layover in the airport, I was lucky enough to spend a few hours with my friend Keelan in Honolulu! We ate a delicious lunch on the oceanfront, caught up, and basked in the sun. Hawaii looks incredibly beautiful and I can’t wait to go back and visit again.
Flying from Hawaii to AmSam! Click on this picture to see it big!

-Arrival in AmSam: As we flew over the island, I was shocked! There were lights everywhere. I had expected complete darkness and a few lights to guide in the plane. Turns out, this island is more developed than I thought! We exited the plane and walked across the tarmac. I wasn’t hit with humidity, but I was hit with a light, cool drizzle of island rain. What a perfect way to start my adventure! I went through customs and I got a stamp in my passpor, which I find funny considering I am in an American territory! I then got my bags, went through inspection, and officially entered AmSam. The airport was filled to the brim with people – this is what they do for fun on Monday nights. They come to say goodbye to loved ones and to greet new people who fly from Hawaii. I couldn’t help but laugh. Our field directors, Drew and Alison, as well as a few other people from the Dept. of Education greeted us with kisses on the cheek and nut necklaces. No turning back now!
I’ll leave you with that. I’m still jet lagged, and my foam mattress is calling my name. But, I’ll be nice and give you a picture of what I wake up to every morning.
Darn those power lines! Everywhere I look, I see lush, green, steep mountains!

Manuia le aso! (Have a good day!)

1 comment:

Mary said...

YOU got tired climbing? YOU? What's happened to you since NZ!? :)

Also, you look absolutely presh in these pics.