Monday, 18 July 2011

Leaving it too late and love of a game

Last month, when I confirmed I was going to be in Samoa end of September I made a mental note to buy tickets for a couple of Manu Samoa's games for the Rugby World Cup, then I did what I always do...I forgot.  I remembered just this past Friday when I set my alarm for Samoa vs Australia game the following day on Saturday but did my classic, I'll do it later.

Following the fantastic victory by our boys in blue over the Wallabies, everyone has been snatching up tickets and now all the tickets for Samoa vs South Africa, one of the main games I wanted to see are all sold out...ARRGHHHHHHHHHH.  To say I am p*ssed off is an understatement.

I've got my ticket for the Wales game, waiting on a Fijian friend to find out where he is sitting for the Samoa vs Fiji game so I can sit with him...I don't know any friends who will be at the RWC.  Four years ago, I went to the world cup in France 2007 with my cousins and made some new life friends.  None of them will be there and although it's probably going to be a little lonely on my own, I'd rather be there alone and watching the Manu on my own than not at all.  

I love Rugby with a passion and mostly when my Samoan boys play.  I grew up making sandwiches at 5am for the Moata'a rugby boys who have produced some great Manu players in their time and continue to do so today.  It didn't matter how early it was on a Saturday morning, we'd be in the kitchen with my mum, dad and sister (my younger siblings could not be trusted with handling food that early in the morning, plus they must have only been 4 and 9) boiling eggs, mashing elegi with mayonnaise, spooning spaghetti onto bread.  And of course I was grumbling about why I had to do it, what about their families and I bet no on else's daughter had to do this, THAT early in the morning and it's not like they even let me play with them during training.  We lived at Nu'u and my dad would be at Lynns shop at opening time ready to pick up 20 loaves of fresh baked bread and raro for the cooler of drink I would make.  Dad was always very involved with the Rugby Union and the Referee association.  In his youth he played for Moata'a club and was assistant coach with auntie Marina when we returned to Samoa in 1990.  I remember having all the Manu Samoa jerseys in boxes at our house one year and asking my dad if I could have one.  His raised eyebrow was the only answer he gave, and the only one I needed!  He taught me to love this game as he did.  Home work was done on the fields at PloyTech Vaivase or Apia Park watching scrums, line outs and listening to the boys joke around.  If I was lucky I'd be allowed to run around with them in my tatty shorts and equally tatty t-shirt(much to my mothers displeasure!)

Recently my cousin called me a groupie and I wasn't very happy with this name association - I started wondering if other people dared think this of me.  Groupies whether it is fair or not, to me, conjures up a negative image of people especially women.  I don't follow around the Manu Samoa team to meet the team players and get their autographs.  I don't lie in hope of certain advances being made as is the image a groupie would suggest nor do I go out of my way to befriend them for status.  I have a passion for the game, I have a desire to see the team do well and dominate world wide which I have always held the belief they could do.  There are people who love to shop for clothes, others love to drink, some collect cars, stamps etc etc.  I LOVE to watch our Manu Samoa live in person(both 7's and 15's) if possible and to cheer the team on with all my heart and soul.  There is nothing like the heart thumping adrenaline rush as you watch a strategy unfold before you, the gasps and winces as bodies crunch from well placed (sometimes not so well placed) tackles.  The unified joy at a score, the uproar of disbelief at a referees bad call and the intimacy of 1000's of people.  I am not a groupie, I am part of the passion that fuels our team.  I am a part of something bigger than myself, a network of belief that runs through the oceans from one Samoan to another, that celebrates our defeats and our triumphs, that no matter how bad the odds or the results, I am a part of the Faith that knows we will soldier on brick wall and all.  Please don't mistaken me for anyone other than a proud Samoan who loves the game and who has been blessed with the chance to live both my father's and my own dreams.

Faamalosi Manu! :)


  1. O ai le alelo ga faia le ga kala?? you're not a groupie. You're a KROUBIE!!! chooohoo... se o mo chokes! :P

    PS. You lucky pij for getting a Manu ticket!!!

  2. o a kroubie lou vasi, fa'apa ifo lou ulu i se mea malo :p lol

  3. auuu..fefe ia
    fai ai e fekagofi ia i lakou muli..
    safe dravels dahling :)