The Samoan Skip

The Samoan Skip

Sunday, August 19, 2012
| Ephesians 5:15-20

The tiny island nation of Samoa switched driving directions a few years ago. Now, they've opted to lose an entire day, to skip to the other side of the international date line.

There are roughly 510 Samoans preparing for a raging party on December 30 this year. That's because last year, they got totally blanked on their birthdays. December 30, 2011, literally didn't exist.

In 1892, Samoa added a day to their calendar so they could align their date with the workweek of their dominant commerce partner at the time, California. That year, they added a second July 4th as a tribute to the American Independence Day. They also thrilled pyrotechnicians and Samoan kids born on the Fourth.

But over time, nearby Australia, New Zealand and the Far East have become Samoa's biggest trade partners. Being a day behind them in international commerce makes for great three-day weekends, but bad four-day workweeks.

"In doing business with New Zealand and Australia, we're losing out on two working days a week," Samoan Prime Minister Tuila'epa noted. "While it's Friday here, it's Saturday in New Zealand, and when we're at church on Sunday, they're already conducting business in...

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