Friday, October 14, 2011

Where The Heart Is

In the (weird little) movie "Where The Heart Is" a pregnant Natalie Portman says of her bump "You hear that? That little bom-bom-bom? That's where the heart is."

What if the heart, or at least a small part of it, is somewhere else. Somewhere far away?

The past several weeks, I have been feeling an overwhelming sense of homesickness. Samoa is calling me. I am guessing that it was triggered by the whole World Cup hype. Watching Samoans coming together to celebrate and cheer on their team, I felt myself bursting with pride. But at the same time I felt so far away from "our people". Now I know there are plenty of Samoans in Wellington, but from what I could see, it wasn't really visible in town. (And besides, I'm antisocial, so I'm not exactly going to go LOOKING for this community that I yearn for) So I continued to go to work (no Samoans) and to church (one other Samoan...woohoo!) Home was the only place where I felt a sense of belonging. Home and online.

My craving for Samoan food, which is a normal thing for me, only intensified from the usuals (faalifu kalo, pa'u mu, panipopo) to the really intense only-in-Samoa type dishes (vaisu, alili, makamalu, limu, faalifu ufi, and that yummy dessert made of mashed ulu and a kind of coconut cream based syrup).

I reminded myself of the things I would miss about New Zealand. My income. The climate. The road code. People that follow the road code. My church. The food (yum char!). Comfort. Affordable broadband. Privacy. Did I mention my income?

I reminded myself of things I hated about Samoa. The sweat. The pefu. Flies. Mosquitoes. A whole new/different set of working standards. The politics. The constant faalavelave's. Everyone commenting on how fat I am ... especially the fatties.

And then there was the small fact that I have never actually lived in Samoa as an adult (which even I still find a bit shocking), having left the country at the age of seventeen.

But my logical analysis does not seem to have any effect on what seems to be a matter of the heart. I want to go home. I feel like I'm in that illogical state that one is in when they are "in love". You may be able to see the logic, the arguments for and against what you want, and despite it all, your heart will not give in.

Is this my RWC patriotism in overload? Is this just what happens when people get old? I don't know. All I know is, I want to go home.