Not So Exotic Hawaii or weeds can be pretty too.

What is the first flower you think of when you think of Hawaii? I bet many will say “orchids!” But as you drive throughout the island you will be hard fixed trying to find one. It’s not to say they don’t grow here I’ve seen them wild in the mountains but they are very, very small orchids.

As I drove Nico to school today, and I must say, it is always when we are running late, I came upon this site. Weeds!

I pass this patch every morning but this morning I was bound and determined not to pass it by without taking a photo.

It is the winter sunrise that hits this patch every year and turns these weeds into a beautiful orange that makes me think. You can find beauty no mater where you live and it does not have to be an exotic orchid to capture your attention.

So I pulled to the side of the road, checked my watch and praying time would stand still I whipped out my trusty camera and took the photo. Normally an eyesore growing in front of someone’s house, the winter sun breaths life into that patch and cheers me every morning as I rush to get Nico to class. And you know what? Time did stand still. I got him to school with minutes to spare.

Then as I headed North to pick up pills for the newest addition to my pack, our boxer, Caddie, I passed a wall of flowers that I have passed for many years.  Every time I passed it I would say, I’ll come back and photograph it. But then we moved and I had not seen the wall in years. But as I zoomed towards Mililani and the vet the wall called out to me.

OMG the wall is in bloom! But I could not stop as I had just minutes (as usual ) to get to the vets. The sun was hitting it perfect, the oranges were popping and it was right at its peak, covered with blooms. Don’t ask me what kind of flowers, that I’ve never known. But they are not exotic, there just common flowers I’m sure.

After leaving the vets I came upon it again. I stopped at the bus stop and while keeping an eye out for the bus I hopped out of the car and this time I would not pass up the opportunity to get the photo. And here it is close up.

And this is the wall at its full length.

So no matter where you live I am sure you have a little bit of Hawaii out there in a weed patch or wall that when the season and sun or just right they take your breath away. In fact if you have a photo of it send it in or to my email and I will share it with the rest of my readers. Just remember to stop and smell, no photograph the flowers, Hawaii can be anywhere.

What Are These Museum Artifacts Or What Are Friends For

Today I met with Evelyn. I’ve never met her before. In person that is. We’ve communicated via blogs. She runs a blog that inculcates many blogs and I’ve sent some of my post to her to put on her site called Carnival of Aloha Since I know how interested she is in Hawaii and the museum I invited her to meet me there today.

Have you ever been around an object, place or person so much that after a while you don’t see it clearly anymore because you’ve almost become jaded?

Being with Evelyn today made me realize just that. We were on the first floor of the museum called Kai Akea or The vast ocean. This realm contains many gods, illustrates some of the creation beliefs and stories of gods like Maui and Pele.

Evelyn is one of these museum goers that takes in everything. And so we explored this first realm quite closely. As we looked at the different artifacts she started asking me questions.

I explained how the hall had been restored to its original condition. The poles you see here were once painted over in white to reflect the much-needed light as there was no electricity for lighting until the 1970’s. The beautifully carved Maile vine that you see here was totally lost in the white paint that once was part of the museum.

As many times as I had been in the museum I never once noticed that each floor had carved moldings at the top of the columns. But once the restoration was done and the hall had been brought back to its original condition I was fascinated at the intricacy of the architecture.

Then she started asking about the Ki’i or the Gods. While I explained the main gods like Pele, Ku and Kaneikokala,  when it came to the other gods like the one above I drew a blank. I could only tell her what I had read about the wavy carvings on the images here that meant that it was some type of water god. At least that is what I had read.

you can see the carved marks above this gods head

But I knew nothing about this god

Or this one. Beautiful work but I only came away feeling overwhelmed again. You get complacent giving your set tours with the same groups of children. It was good for me to be with a friend and a lover of antiquity to remind me of the wonderful exhibits that I’ve overlooked, become complacent about and have just plain ignored.

So I will have to start back into my books, researching my artifacts and visiting the great museum library. Nothing like a friend to help you see how little you know.

Get Puppy Mills Out of Hawaii

This is my pack. The dog who is giving you the saddest look is Max. No he does not look like that because he does not have a bed, (he  won’t sleep in one) he looks like that because I won’t let him sit by me while I take this photo.

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love my animals. So to my Hawaii friends I am asking that you read this enclosed article From the Humane Society about puppy mills and contact your legislature. http://nhes.wordpress.com/category/action-letters/

Thank you.

On Being a Docent at Bishop Museum

It’s Friday. I have from 5:30 AM to 7:30 AM to get me ready, the four dogs fed and emptied out, perhaps dump a load of wash in and get breakfast ready for my grandson and me. Then it is off to his school to get him to his class and off to town to get me to the museum.

I had mentioned to my friend that I was not scheduled to do any tours today and was hoping that I would at least have some adults to give tours to.

As it happened we had a last-minute booking of third graders from Punahou School today. I was delighted. These children are always attentive, polite and so insightful. They ask wonderful questions and can grasp all the information that is being give to them.

They were booked for an hour program that went by so fast that the teacher asked if she could do an extended tour with the kids. Since there were no other schools booked and I had a couple of hours to fill I was more than happy to fill it with them. The two hours flew by. But what I enjoyed so much, what I had to concentrate on to keep from tearing up was when the teacher asked the children  to do a Ole. ( a chant)

We had just finished talking about the Kii (god) Ku and so I thought they would be doing a ole to him. But to my surprise it was a thank you chant for me. It was wonderful. It is what sets Hawaii apart and what makes it such a pleasure to be a part of as a docent. The children did their ole and I managed to keep the tears in check.

Little girls coming up and hugging me, little boys asking their questions about the exhibits and thanking me for the tour and teachers who are so happy to have me give them that little extra but most of all the respect and honor the docents are given when a ole is sung to them makes volunteering at the museum a very special privilege.

Here are a few other things I love about the museum.

Attending lectures such as this one on Hawaiian Tattoos.

Taking my family to special exhibits

Last but not least I love that sometimes I can just be a silly goose and just enjoy being a part of the whole thing.