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Travel Diary: Pago Pago, American Samoa

Tuesday February 19:, 2019

PORT 8: PAGO PAGO, AMERICAN SAMOA

Coming into the port, BGM remarked that it was even prettier than Bora Bora, which I thought was the prettiest place I had ever seen. I give it a tie. I think BGM liked the colorful houses. However, after seeing most of Pago Pago, which has about 57,000 inhabitants, it is really not a close call. Bora Bora is much prettier for many reasons but principally because it is much less populated. having less than 10,000 inhabitants. There is not much commerce. About a third of the working population works in the tuna canning industry.

American Samao about 30 NFL players and over 120 kids playing Division I college football in the States.

One unusual fact is that those who own property bury those who die in their family on their property.

Our intent was to walk around and then take a taxi about six miles from the port to have lunch at Tisa’s Barefoot Bar, the most highly rated restaurant. Those plans were scuttled when BGM heard a guide sitting at the dock telling other passengers, that it cost $75 per person to go there for lunch. We could never get a definitive answer because a subsequent clairification was that this was the cost only when there was a show, but no one could tell us if there was a show this day.

Long story short, we did not go there for lunch. In fact, we went no where for lunch and I had some grilled chicken breasts and a salad at the pool bar on the ship when we got back about 3 p.m.. it must have been Yom Kippur on American Samoa as BGM, essentially fasted for the day.

We thought about hiring a taxi to take us around. We learned that the taxi have no meters and that one has to bargain before getting into one. (The are also not air conditioned, Instead, with another couple who are part of our “group” whom we met on the pier, we hired a driver/guide who had a bus and he drove us around for over four hours for a total of $20 per person. The bus was also not air conditioned, and, although it was hot, there was somewhat of a breeze so it was bearable.

HOT TIP: Do not have high expectations and you will not be disappointed. There are no bad things, but there are no great things. It is an opportunity to learn about another culture.

We enjoyed the day. The people are very friendly and we were glad we went. We do not have to go agai.

We rate our day in this port a B

Lost Wednesday February 21 due to crossing international dateline.

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