When They Call, You Must Go

This is an experience I had years back when Hawaiian Hall at Bishop Museum was undergoing restoration. I love these experiences and enjoy sharing them. I hope you enjoy it too.

 

The sun was out, and the whole Koolau range was in view. Sun and blue skies equal no people at the museum. As I stood in the main entrance a few people passed into the Kahili room. Maybe a couple viewed the art in the vestibule.

In the quiet I heard someone singing. Now you have to remember that lots of people have had ghostly experiences in this hall and I was not sure what I heard. But the sound was definitely there. Then it became muffled. I didn’t want to trudge up the two flights of stairs to check what was going on. The only people who had ventured to the upper exhibit area was a very pleasant Hawaiian couple.
But I still heard the singing and it was coming from above. I called over to security and told them to look into their cameras to see if someone was singing in the photo gallery.
“Yeah, someone is, let me get one of the security over there.”
Now I could hear the singing clearer and it sounded like chanting. The young guard came through the main doors and headed up the stairs. Soon the chanting became louder and I was curious. So I ascended the stairs also.
The doors to the exhibit hall had been closed and now one was ajar. I knew that they were supposed to be opened. I entered and saw the guard talking to the male of the Hawaiian Couple. The woman was in a corner, arms raised in supplication, moving gracefully,chanting. I approached the guard who was now in a mildly heated conversation.
The Hawaiian man was being told that he could not be chanting or singing or doing anything in the museum without permission and that they had to leave.
In the past there have been demonstrations and even artifacts have disappeared and the guard was worried that this could be some kind of demonstration. The gentleman was stating that the things of the museum were part of his ancestry and he gestured around the room.
The woman was still chanting as the discussion went on and then the security received a call from the office asking what was status of the situation. He stated that a woman and man were singing and he was trying to get them to leave.
I on the other hand saw that they were chanting as I had seen many times before in the museum. I did not feel that they were protesters but that they were paying their respects. Although other chanters always requested permission before doing so.
After a time the woman finished and came over to us and started speaking Hawaiian. I only understood a word here and there but, really, had no idea what she was saying. When all was said and done it was explained that she had come to say a prayer or a pule. At least that is what I think she said.
They were from the island of Hawaii. The woman said that she had been called by the spirits of her Kupuna or ancestors. They had been appealing to her to please come to the museum as they were being neglected and hid away. She said that she came to reassure them and to honor them and help them to be at peace. Now she is telling me this in half English and half Hawaiian so I am not sure that I got it all correct. I just knew that maybe my boss, Kealoha, would arrive soon as he would know how to interact.
Really the chanting was beautiful and she was graceful and kind. And I guess when it comes to the Hawaiian culture my heart goes out to that community for all the suffering that has taken place in the past. I knew that once Kealoha arrived  he would make it all well.
I mentioned that though nothing was wrong with chanting and that what she was doing was fine they just needed to make arrangements and then I explained to her why the room that she was in was so changed. She was upset at seeing all of the artifacts, that were once in the room, were gone and it was now just paintings. She felt that was why she was being called. I told her that the room had been restored to its original condition like it was when the Museum opened in 1898.
I told her that many things were going to be different once all restoration was finished and that much more of the Hawaiian artifacts were going to be brought out that weren’t displayed before. She was very happy to hear that and asked if she could go on to the other exhibit areas. I said it was fine as long as she didn’t chant and that Kealoha would be in soon and she could talk to him.
As I got  back to the main floor many people had arrived and so I announced that I would be doing a tour and people began to gather. As I started to talk, Kealoha and the Hawaiian couple entered into the Kahili room. Soon sounds of chanting could be heard. All the heads turned. I explained what it was and let them listen for a while which they did with much appreciation.
As I was into the middle of my tour the coupled left and nodded as they headed out the door. I felt good, I believe the kupuna, also, felt good, and certainly the visitors enjoyed witnessing a bit of the Hawaiian culture. I love it when that happens.
The ancestors had called, they were heard and she answered.

It’s a Dogs Life

DSC_0063People pay thousands of dollars to visit Hawaii. Imagine their shock when approaching this Park  under the famous landmark, Diamond Head and being confronted by smatterings of tents with dirty feet protruding from the entrance of a one person domicile. Piles of black bags and bottles lean against the structures. This is the heart of Waikiki and of course these people, many who were in fact paid by their states to relocate here, are quite happy to have landed in, what is for them, paradise. The parks in this area have been cleaned up but still there are many who have moved on to the more local areas of the island. Even out to the outskirts to the bedroom communities.
Here in Hawaii we are having a tremendous problem with homeless. Many homeless come from the mainland as it is much easier to sleep in the warm weather on the beach then on a street in the freezing temperatures where they lived. I found this article I had written a while back that reminded me of the sad state of affairs society is facing and still, I don’t know the answer….
I was reading an article in the “Morning Honolulu Advertiser”
http;//the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/200i/mar/23/in/hawaii803230347.html
concerning stray dogs. It seems that the authorities have taken to rounding up all the pets that the homeless have been keeping while living on the beach. The photo in the paper showed a man and wife in their 70s at least. the photo was sad indeed.

I mentioned this to my daughter as I thought how low the officials were stooping . It wasn’t enough that these people did not have a place to live but now they were taking away a loved pet and much-needed protection. It was not so long ago when were reading about how people risked their lives to stay with their pets rather than evacuate and leave them behind as the New Orleans flood waters were rising.

Could Max have been one of the dogs that had been rounded up? Of course the Humane Society would say he was a stray. They would never say the dog was taken from his homeless masters as they were out helping friends, leaving them to feel that a member of their family had been kidnapped, as the homeless couple had stated.

Max was undernourished to be sure as his little skinny body showed. His fur was in dreadlocks. There were sores under his matted fur and he looked dull with his tail between his legs. But he immediately took to the family. He loved my little grandson right off the bat and he was so friendly. Not like most dogs who have been on their own so long. So I wondered.

My practical daughter pointed out that yes it was a very sad situation and it was upsetting but if I were to look at the bigger picture I would have to admit that if Max were one of the dogs, he was off to a very bad start and surely would not live that long in such a horrible condition. Now he is groomed, has picked up weight and has taken over my bed. Yes he is in a much better place.

But what about those homeless kupuna (http://www.calvin.edu/weblogs?/idisw20/january 14th/) ? The displaced and yes, even the derelicts who have no one to take them in or make sure that they received the proper medical care and nutrition?

Where have we as a society gone wrong that we sweep the beaches to take the dogs from the homeless to make sure that the dogs are taken care of and yet leave the humans to their own salvation? Yes there were other reasons that the animals needed to be removed but the bottom line seems that the animals are far better off. I don’t have a solution. I will have to think of a small way that I can do something but I can only say that somehow at this time and place in society, the human race seems to be going to the dogs.

Looking Back, Looking Forward

FullSizeRender
Zoebird My Brittany Spaniel
A post from the past until I Post in the present.
The heading in my email from the dog treat site I subscribed to read “Baggens at Peace.” My heart sank. Before I even opened it visions for my Zoe started to emerge. I opened the mail and started to read. When I read where the writers dog had lain at her door, I saw Zoe. Her dog was dying and I knew every pain and emotion that she was going through and started to cry. 


Nico got worried, so quickly I dried my tears and got myself in order. Just then Max looked up at me and I felt the invisible tap on my shoulder. The whisper in my ear from nobody but yet I knew it was someone reminding me. “Max is only four but you can’t take him for granted.” 


I got off my chair and hugged him and ran my hands through his stiff, dusty fur. It had been a month since his last bath and worse yet two weeks since I’ve been able to walk him due to tendonitis in my foot. With his stinky paw  on my knee I told him, though it was late in the evening, he was getting a bath so that he could feel good again. 


That night he slept on my bed next to me. He smelled so good and felt even better. I was bound and determined to appreciate him even more. 


Tonight as I sat at my computer, frustrated, trying to figure out a program, Max put his paw on me. It was 8 PM and no one had walked him yet and since my daughter had hurt her knee and my son in law was complaining about his foot, I knew if Max was walked it was just going to be half a block. 


I tied on my shoes, loaded my phone into my pocket and grabbed my keys. Max knew the signs and was leaping like a lamb by the time I got to the door. I figured if I walked slow enough and let him sniff as much as he wanted it would suffice for not being able to walk at any length. 


We walked the half block to the park and he pulled me into it. I’ll let him take the lead, I thought, maybe he’ll do his business and head home. 


He walked, sniffed and peed from one end to the other. We made a full circle and then as we got back to the sidewalk, Max looked back at me. The wind blew and caught his fur just right. The fur covering his one eye lifted,and with that one eye, the look he gave me was as though he was saying, “can we go further?


 How could I not. 


Now were home. He’s laying at my feet, I’m eating a bowl of cereal watching “You’ve Got Mail” for the umpteenth time. Comfort food, a feel good movie and my companion next to me.


 For this moment everything is all right in my world. 



And Now A Word From My Sponsor

Actually I’m his sponsor being that I am showing you photos that my son, Joseph, took.

DCIM100GOPRO

DCIM100GOPRO

Now I wasn’t with him and so I’m not sure but I think this was out at Waimea Bay. Joseph loves his GoPro and I think gets some pretty nice photos with it.

 

DCIM100GOPRO

DCIM100GOPRO

Though many a time I’ve seen turtles Surfing (yes they surf) in the waves, I’ve never seen them under water.

 

DCIM100GOPRO

DCIM100GOPRO

Joseph was able to get up and personal with them.

 

1375924_153386118205082_1931703729_nAnd of course my son’s water baby, Laʻakea was with him.

And now back to our regular program. Well when I get around to posting it.

 

Of Pigs and Rocks and Crabs in the Sand

There is so much to know about making a luau. None of which I can even begin to tell you. My son called me and asked if I wanted to go out to Waianae to visit his cousin Kaipo. Oh Yes! I love to visit with him. He has so many stories about the Hawaiian side of his family and it’s never a dull moment around him.

Then my son said were going to go to Makaha to the beach so that Kaipo can show the kids how to find rocks for the imu. The imu is the pit that the pig is roasted in with special types of rocks and this was what we were going to look for. 3372289796_2c776f7d98_bI’ve shown this photo in another blog but I thought it would help to illustrate how they put the rock inside of the pig and then into the hot rocks into the ground which is the imu. There is much more preparation then that but in the interest of time and my brain that has forgotten most of it I think you will get the picture.IMG_0646Here is Kaipo checking out something in the water. I imagine this is where he looks for the rocks. And do you know why I have to imagine? Well once we got there I forgot to pay attention as I could not stop taking photos. So needless to say, I don’t have a photo of the rocks..

IMG_0671I think  you would be distracted too if this was your view.

Then I thought I should go and listen to what they are saying as they gathered around Kaipo. So I walk over to where they all gathered and my son tells me, “I’m glad your taking photos. Can you make sure to get Laʻkea on the boogie board. Well so much for learning anything.

IMG_0669Gathering around Kaipo and I have no idea what they are talking about.

IMG_0637Donʻt ask me  but it looks interesting

IMG_0718So I start photographing. Once again my grandson Laʻakea is in the water catching waves

IMG_0720This one broke too soon and he tried to make it to shore before it got him

IMG_0721Hmmm, not sure if he is going to make it

IMG_0722Well he caught some of it and finely made it into shore

IMG_0728Time to take a rest

IMG_0714And my younger grandson Nico is learning to ride the waves and his father is teaching him. What a way to spend the day with your dad.

IMG_0670I turn around and everyone is searching the sand. Again Iʻm clueless. soon someone comes over and shows me the glass they had gathered for my daughter who likes to collect it.

IMG_0653So what is Cody looking for?

IMG_0673Well he may not have found anything in the coral but he certainly found a crab in the sand.IMG_0647As I looked around I found this memorial. Iʻm not sure but since this is inlaid into the coral Iʻm thinking he might have been killed while fishing. A lot of memorials go up at the beach where fishermen have been taken into the water by high waves and drowned.

So we say good-by to Kaipo and the gang no wiser about luau rock then I was. But, you know crabs live in the sand, kids love the waves and I need to quit being distracted by my camera.

There is a Kalua coming up and they will be digging an imu, roasting a pig and most definitely there will be luau rock. If I can keep my attention on the imu, I will then get a photo of the rock, thatʻs if we donʻt end up at the beach.