Those of us new to the Samoan Halloween tradition were warned in advance. It seems that Palagi Village, where I live, is marked as good stomping grounds for "the good stuff" - lots and lots of candy. Urban, or in this case, island legends spoke darkly of children being bused into the neighborhood and waves and waves of children coming to your door with your candy quickly gone and more and more angry children demanding their share and riots breaking out over the last snickers bar. Okay, perhaps the riots is just my addition, but the waves of children was part of the story. A group of us decided not to find out and decided to get the heck out of the neighborhood for the night. Now, before I start getting a ton of comments about my ba hum bug for Halloween and not thinking of the children, let me explain Halloween in Samoa.
Halloween has made it to Samoa, but I not sure the Samoans fully implement the traditional requirements of Halloween. Back in my day, it was required to dress up in a costume and when you got a certain age it was time to hang up the vampire costume and buy candy like everyone else. Well, that part of Halloween has not made it to Samoa. We still have the little kids that are soooo adorable in their spiderman costume or princess costume - and I gave out candy to those kiddies. They also chanted "Trick or Treat, Give me something good to eat" but the lack of spirit or voice inflection indicated the chanting was more for my benefit then for their enjoyment. I let that go, it is the thought that counts, right?
However, most of the trick or treaters seemed a little old to be asking others for candy and I guess could not be bothered to put something together for the holiday. How hard is it to get a sheet and put it over you? come on people - show a little effort. For example - just using the items found in your home...a Law Clerk for the High Court turns into...
...White Trash. Love it.
By 7 pm, the neighborhood was packed - a ton of cars and I did see a bus parked near my house. Once we got out of the neighborhood, (we got hungry and thought we could make a break for it) we noticed that some of the trick or treaters were going to area businesses in their attempt to fill up their bags. By this time, most of the little ones were gone and it was mainly high school seniors sans costume with plastic bags searching for candy.
We went to Hong Kong House for an Oriental feast. Now, before I get even more comments about the usage of "Oriental" - the radio ad tag line sweetly sings "An Oriental Feast" - not my first choice of a tag line, but whom am I to judge and I just report what I hear, so don't blame the messenger. I must point out that Hong Kong House advertises as one of the classiest restaurants on the island and when Checkers and KFC are considered restaurants, I am going to agree with them. Regardless, it was a great feast - no matter what you call it - and it was a ton of food and cheap. I am learning that Samoans provide generous portions - think Cheesecake Factory portion, but Samoans are actually able to eat it all plus have room for dessert. yikes. Color me impressed.
When I got home, my house was safe and sound - none of my bushes or coconut trees were toilet papered, but that might have been because Cost-U-Less ran low and toilet paper is a little expensive on the island.
Sadly that night, I ate the leftover candy and got a belly ache. Oh Halloween glad somethings never change.