Hey e’rbody. We received our placements today!
Unless something changes, Wes and I will be living on Ta’u. He’ll be teaching high school science and I’ll be teaching elementary everything (not just English–are you surprised?!?). I’m not sure which grade level I’ll be teaching yet.
Ta’u is the largest island in the Manu’a island group and is about 70 miles from the main island, Tutuila. Ta’u is roughly 15 sq mi (more or less, depending on your source), but it is mostly uninhabited since the majority of the island belongs to the National Park of American Samoa. So, it’s all rainforest and mountains and beautiful views. There’s something else that’s pretty special about Manu’a that makes me feel all “oh gosh this is like ‘the Garden’ kind of paradise!” If you can figure out what it is, I’ll give you a present (leave your
guesses well researched answers in the comments).
Ta’u is basically a very small town in the middle of a very big ocean. According to the Lonely Planet guide, the total population of Ta’u is 800. I can barely even understand that. Naturally, the schools are pretty small. (I found an article in the Samoan news congratulating the senior class of Wes’ school; there were 16 kids graduating.) I always think Wes and I are very small-town type people, but that’s not exactly accurate. Last month we totally freaked out, as in “oh my gosh, what do we doooo?” when someone rang the doorbell at 7pm (after some frantic discussion, we decided to open the door). We are both pretty terrible at small talk. And most of all, we are usually in a hurry. I’m really excited about moving to such a remote island, but I know that we are in for some pretty serious culture shock.
Also, from what I understand, the internet and cellphone situation on Ta’u is a little…not great. We should have somewhat regular access but, from what I’ve read on past-volunteers’ blogs, it’s hit or miss. We’ll do our best to keep our blogs updated though. If you look to the right, there’s a little “subscribe” thingy on the sidebar; if you want to get email notifications whenever I update this blog, you should definitely subscribe! There’s also a link to Wes’ blog over there somewhere, too.
P.S. We are leaving in 24 days. If you wanna see us before we go, speak now.
P.P.S. lookit it!