The Last Place On Earth To Discover The Future

American Samoa is the Last Place on Earth to see a sunset, and tonight we're going to be the Last Place On Earth to still be in 2012. While the rest of the planet is celebrating and ringing in the new year, American Samoa will still be waiting expectantly for our turn to greet 2013 and wonder which of Last Year's New Year Resolutions we will carry over into 2013 (all of them, apparently).

In 2011, The Independent State of Samoa changed which side of the International Dateline they were going to be on, and while it isn't the first time they've done so, there are many of us who grew up in the same time zone as our cousins over in Independent Samoa. That year I flew over to Samoa for New Years and crossed the International Dateline for the first time in my adult life and landed in the same Fagali'i airport I've known since my childhood. If I could've tweeted about time traveling, I would've, but tweeting just seems less satisfying than the word count euphoria that comes with blogging.

The Samoan archipelago now (and apparently again) has the dubious of honor of being the first sunset of the new year and the last sunset of the new year, with Independent Samoa leading the world into the future and American Samoa trailing behind. Hmm.... When I say it that way, it doesn't quite sound that great...

Anyway, our close proximity and straddling of the Dateline means that New Years Bunnies and Wabbits can actually ring in the New Years twice and still have time for a nap in between parties. It is a half hour flight from Samoa to American Samoa on either Inter Island Airlines and Polynesian Airlines

Residents of American Samoa are very calm about it. The New Year is something one just can't be late for, and with that kind of built-in punctuality - not even Samoan-time can interfere with the celebratory mood. 

(Samoa rang in the New Year at midnight last night. Time travelers should be arriving on Polynesian Airline flights from Samoa all day today. I should come up with a special coin for every New Year for Time Travelers, one side marked the prior year, and the other side with the new year. Next Year, that'll be my new resolution... on top of losing weight.)

Last Place On Earth Sunset Point
Amanave and Poloa Villages
Tutuila Island, Pago Pago
American Samoa