The other night I was following my typical evening routine. Skin a piece of chicken and throw the skin to the dogs and the leg/thigh into a frying pan to start cooking. Then into the shower. Hardly worth writing about but that night was a bit more exciting than usual.
It was a hot, humid evening and the cold water felt good. I’d just soaped myself up when the water stopped. Hmm, what’s a soapy, naked palagi to do? Usually when the water stops it’s because the pipe is broken. Most often by a pig or member of my family stepping on the pipe, which is more exposed than buried.
Several of my brothers and their friends were making a fire for the saka and the umu and just generally chilling. All within about ten feet of my shower. I could yell to get their attention. I thought I heard the sound of gushing water just outside my bathroom, so assumed that’s where the pipe was broken. Maybe they’d notice?
I stood there, dripping suds and trying to figure out how to say “Hey, the pipe broke and I have no water and I’m in the middle of my shower.” As I stood there thinking about the best plan of action, I heard laughing and some commotion next to my shower wall. Then the water came back on. I yelled my thanks and they laughed some more.
I finished my shower and as I turned off the water, something exploded. Near my head. I ducked for cover. Luckily I didn’t scream because it only took me a second to realize that one of the enormous ripe breadfruit had fallen onto the tin roof about a foot over my head. I heard it roll off the roof and splat on the ground.
There is a saying here that you can never die of starvation in Samoa because food falls on your head here. So true.
For anyone interested in my meals, dinner that night was mashed potatoes (actually 1 small potato, mashed) and the chicken quarter cooked in a non-stick pan with carrot slices and some orange marmalade. Easy and tasty. If I’d known the breadfruit was getting ready to fall I could have had that instead of the potato.