Communication

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Yes this is pretty much how he responds to me when I want to talk to him

How do I find common ground with my  preteen grandson?  For that matter just finding common ground with any of my grand kids has left me wanting.

I don’t want to just be grandma, the old lady that always wants a hug and a kiss. Of course here in Hawaii that is a given. Regardless of age, you would not dare enter a room without giving your kupuna (elder) a hug and a kiss. That type of respect is ingrained from day one.

I want to communicate. I want to discuss, to ignite conversation and encourage my grandchildren to experience life beyond cell phones and games.

Two of my grandsons love photography.  One lives about 20 miles away and I rarely see him. The other, Nico, lives in the same house as I do. Our communication has been limited.  “What’s for dinner?”  “When are we leaving for school?”  “Why did you pick me up so early from school? I was still talking to my friends.”  And last, but certainly not least, “Good night grandma, I love you.”

So Nico gets a Camera for his 12th birthday. He no longer has to take photos with his phone, he now has a DSLR!

Here we go, the common ground! “How would you like to go on some adventures like when you were younger?” I ask him.  Quickly I add, “I mean we can go to different places to take photos.” So far, he has used his cell phone to take photos of buildings as he drives by, photos of feet, close-ups of his dog and things around the house. Fun photos I admit, but his area is limited.

To my great surprise he says, “Yes!”  I suggest a drive to Haleiwa, ( where else?), we can go in the evening and photograph the sunset.  The date is set and surprise again, he reminds me that morning about our plan.

As we get ready to leave he heads out with his camera bag. I start to tell him that I would rather he put his camera around his neck, and he pulls a face on me and starts to get grumpy.  So I let it go.

When we get in the car I tell him to let me know if there is something he wants to photograph along the way. Out comes his phone and before I know it he is deep into YouTube.

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Unfortunately his phone arrives with him. Notice his camera is now around his neck. “Sort of late,”  I tell him as people will notice that we put his camera bag in the trunk. “Oh well,” I think to myself, live and learn.

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I try to call him over to explain about the two Hawaiian flags. How  the Hawaiians were forced to take down their flag and put up the American flag. He is having none of it.

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When we arrive at the beach he wants to know how long are we going to have to wait for the sun to set. I feel like he is the kid in the back seat of the car asking “are we are there yet?” I tell him, “Look around you.  The mountains are behind us and the clouds are setting on them. You can photograph that.” Too late, his phone is back in his hands.

P1010054At last he exchanges his phone for his camera and is starting to take photos. I think to myself had he been dressed all in white he would have blended right in with the windmill farm behind him.

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The sun is setting quickly and I’m not sure if he is still taking photos but I don’t want to miss it. This view was worth the hassle, and I marvel at the fact that it is now past 7 pm and the weather is still nice enough to be out in the ocean swimming. I want to tell Nico to try to get some people in his photos but I push that out of my thoughts. He will do what he wants to do.

After the sun has gone down he shows me his photos of the sand, his name in the sand and photos of things around. I did see one really nice sunset photo but he was clicking through his images so quickly that I’m not sure.

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I snap one last photo of the sun going down

P1010024I say goodby to the shack and beach where “Bay Watch” was filmed.

Maybe one day he will let me show him how to put his photos onto the computer so that we can see them together. I won’t hold my breath though.

As we head back home I resign myself to the fact that I have once again failed to communicate with him. “Nico, we don’t have to do this anymore I know you did not enjoy it.” But he surprises me and says he really did enjoy it and wants to do another adventure again. Wow! Communication at last.

He pulls out his phone and down the road we go.

YOU MAY BE RIGHT, I MAY BE CRAZY EATING AT JAMESON’S BY THE SEA

The sky is bright blue. The birds are singing from morning to sunset and I am surrounded by a blanket of blue to swim in. And yet I’m at home.

Well thanks to my knitting group I made it, yet again, out of my hideaway and to my favorite side of the island, Haleiwa. My neighbor, Linda, had barely parked the car before I was jumping out and fumbling in my purse for my camera.

Oh my god, it was gorgeous out. The sun was starting to set, it was as warm as a sweater and I was ecstatic. Smiling, and rushing to take photos before the color was gone I had forgotten that I wasn’t out here for my own benefit but I was out here to have one last dinner with a member of our knitting group whose husband was being transferred to Texas.

Loss, once again a member of our group is leaving us and taking a piece of our heart. It seems that we just get to really feel comfortable, look forward to talking to and relying upon their knowledge at group, when all of a sudden they are gone.

And so here I am out on the North Shore so happy to be here and so sad to say good-by

 

 

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Finely we make it into the restaurant. This is our view. What is wrong with me. What am I thinking? Staying home? Looking at this? Staying home? Looking at this. No brainer right? But I must be crazy as I stay home. But I took photos and they make me feel guilty to look at them, yet they may spear me on to do this again.

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Here is a few of our knitting group. Lisa, the one who is leaving is sitting on the end with the leis around her neck. I’m sitting next to her, Linda ,my neighbor is next to me and across from us, closest, Kim who is always knitting, Sara and Jennifer. You can see the pink of the sunset is reflecting on our table. The glow is making me feel so good inside.

P1000175On the inside looking out. I must return. I think I can, I think I can

P1000194And as the sun sinks slowly into the sunset

P1000193Everyone rushes to get that one last photo

P1000186To be able to share this with someone would make it even more special. But we say good-day to the sun, thank you for always being there. Our food arrives and we get on to a most enjoyable dinner.P1000192Yes, I must be crazy but not for long. Good night Jameson’s by the sea. I’ll be back to get another dose of sanity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Haleiwa Hawaii Farmers Market Cacao Festival

People Brave the elements in the dead of winter to attend the Cacao Festival.

I headed out to Haleiwa  to visit the Farmers Market in search of Non GMO vegetables and to peruse what unusual crafts might be on sale. I was not disappointed.

Aren’t those beautiful avocados? I stopped at this booth looking for a plant to plant on my fence.

 

I looked through more plants asking myself why don’t my plants look like this? Of course I need to fertilize them and give them more soil but besides that why don’t they look like these. I didn’t find my plant I was looking for so I moved on to the next booth.

 

Proprietor Keven Easley (itzsoap@gmail.com) Gives a Shaka sign as he helps a woman make up her mind.

I  hadn’t had breakfast yet and when I saw this booth, I immediately thought of jello and fancy molds. There was Cinnamon and vanilla and many scents to wet my appetite. But I would have been blowing bubbles had I taken a bite. These were all types of soaps for all types of skins. You can just about smell how wonderful they are just by looking at the woman taking in one of the bars.

If you’re looking for a nice gift the soaps are wrapped and ready to go

In case you’re wondering the North Shore Pipeline is a surf spot not pipes being lain for oil.

Seaweed, the vegetable from the sea. Really love this in a salad

I was so tempted to buy this seaweed plate lunch it really looked good but I was saving my appetite to go out for Mexican food for lunch afterwords

 

Lets take an orchid break

Remember when we used to hope for one of these when you went on a date. Oh, I’m really, really dating myself.

Aren’t these just beautiful?

The Rambutan  is a very good fruit. For information on this strange-looking edible you can check out this site. http://www.rambutan.com/
 
And what is Hawaii without an Aloha Shirt
 
I’m not sure what these guys are but I thought they were very cute.
 
I just loved this sign. Unfortunately it was not for sale it just told people what they sold
 
Oh, I almost forgot! Yes, this was a Cacao Festival and here it is before it becomes Chocolate.
 
 
 
And here is what the nut looks like inside and one of the products made from Cacao

Off to Wailua Fresh and Haleiwa Beach. Just another beautiful day in Hawaii

It was a good morning to drive out to Wailua and Haleiwa. Though it is the dead of winter here in Hawaii, it is quite sunny and warm. So Nico and I, his best friend John Mark and his mother headed out to Wailua Fresh.

After picking up some wonderful freshly grown, GMO free vegetables and fruit we headed out on an adventure. We had been told about a monastery that was way in the back of the Waianae mountain range. The kicker was we would have to drive through the rumored Monsanto fields. Or better known as the Frankenseed industry. So we headed out.

According to the directions we were given, this must have been the Monsanto  fields. The road was very rocky so it took us quite a time to get up to the next set of gates. But where was the gate leading to the monastery? We were told to stop at the gates and wait. A monk would come out and show us around.

The only thing we saw was a sign that said Orchid farm no trespassing. But I could not resist the opportunity to jump out of the car and take a photo of the North Shore. What a view. There was a wonderful paved road just ahead and I was so tempted to continue on (it turned out that the paved road was the way there)to see if the monastery was around the bend.

But I didn’t want to take a chance of getting into trouble. So I took one last photo and we hopped in the car and headed to the beach.

We stopped at the bakery and bought some wonderful, fresh, inexpensive pastries and sat in the park to eat them.

We walked along Haleiwa Beach

We watched the building waves. The beginning of an expected huge surf.

The boys gathered shells and coral and ran around for awhile. Though we never found the monastery ( I will another time, I’m determined) we still had a wonderful day. The boys got to play together one last time before heading back to school tomorrow.

And I can’t wait to make my smoothies in the morning with my fresh Wailua fruits.

 

 

Touching the Past Kealiiokamalu Church

As you sit on the white sands under the palm you breath a sigh as the ship sails by. Ah, this is a vacation you think to yourself as the sun smiles down on you.

La Marieanna

That evening you decide to go out for dinner and some drinks. You hear about this restaurant and bar called La Mariana. Everyone tells you it’s like stepping back into old Hawaii. The  owner had collected Hawaiian kitsch from famous restaurants as they closed down and then added them to her place. It is a museum of restaurant history.

As you sit at the bar relaxing you hear the couple next to you talking about how they were sorry to have to leave  the islands for home so quickly as they never really got to see what Hawaii was all about. There tan’s showed they probably spent all their time on the beach.

Many tourist go home thinking that Waikiki is Hawaii. They never venture out past Diamond Head until they take the ride back to the airport along the highway past all the industrial area.

They may have found had they driven around the island past the green velvet mountains full with water falls, and clear views of the ocean with uncrowded beaches, that there are so many things tucked away into the little towns. History that can be touched if only they would reach out.

One such place I found as I drove down some back street in Haleiwa was the Kealii O Kamalu Church.

Kealiiokamalu Church (Prince Of Peace)

The doors were wide open. Not many churches now days have their doors unlocked during the week if there is no service at that time. This structure was from the past and that is what drew  me to park and  take a look inside.

Kahu (minister) Kenneth Segawa

Inside the church there was a lot of construction going on. There was a man standing at the front on the porch with a handful of tools.

He was the Kahu or minister of this little community church. The church was under restoration. Though he was busy Kahu Ken invited me in to look around.

Looking from the front to the back of the Church

The  Kahu said that the congregation is very small and casual. He went on to say that it would not be unusal for a little child to be chasing a ball down the middle of the isle while he was conducting a sermon. He said that this was not a problem as he wanted the congregation to be comfortable and not stifled.

The sermon is given in Hawaiian as it was in the past. Part of the mission of this church is to perpetuate the Hawaiian language. The building is a typical example of a rural missionary church.

It has been in it’s present site since 1937 but was in existence long before that. I’m not quite sure but maybe it had been moved there from another site.

In Hawaiian tradition the front doors face makai (ocean) to welcome the bounty of the sea. The rear doors face Mauka (mountain) to welcome the gifts of the land.

Doors facing out to the Ocean

Back door open to the land

Looking around, even though everything was in disarray there was still a coziness to the structure. A Hawaiian community still existed and worshiped in the disappearing culture of the past. It gave one hope for the future.

Then Kahu Ken took me to the front of the church to show me what I took to be quite a significant piece of history. He removed a white cloth to expose an old bible. It was dated 1868. In the bible was recorded the death of  William Henry Tell’s wife.

Her name was Victoria Tell. Later I was to discover that Mrs. Tell was the daughter of Captain Alexander Harris. Not only did Captain Harris sail Kamehameha the Great‘s  cargo ship to china loaded with sandalwood, he was also noted for his part in the making of the controversial Hawaiian Flag.


Hawaiian Bible dated 1868 still used in the sermons of Kahu Ken

I was elated. Not only had I walked in to the past as I toured the little Hawaiian Church, I had actually touched History. I had touched the bible that had been a part of the life of the daughter who’s father was an intricate part of the highest chief of the land, King Kamehameha The Great. Talk about six degrees of Kevin Bacon.

A little side note if you were a fan of Lost. This was the church that was used in one of the episodes. You might enjoy going to this site to see how it was integrated into the story.  Lost

If you would like to attend the church one Sunday, the doors open at 9:30. If you are so inclined and would like to meet some of the people of the community there is a potluck after the Sunday Sermon on the first Sunday of the month.

The address of Kealii O Ka Malu is: 66-362 Halieiwa Road & Keahipaka St.

( the directions are in the “Lost” website above.)

Haleiwa Hawaii

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Double click photos for closer look

I promised Nico that I would take him to the beach. So we left Kunia and headed for Haleiwa on the North shore. The traffic was bad and I could not pull over to take photos so I just stuck my camera in the window as I drove along and snapped. This is us heading into Haleiwa town.

Nico kept watch on the weather out his side of the window on the right of the car. “Grandma it’s not raining on my side, it’s only raining on yours” he said with hopes that it would be clear when we arrived at the beach.

We passed the Golden arches of McDonald’s which was arch-less due to the towns prohibiting them from putting it up so that the fast food joint would not look out of style with the town. That was the only way they would allow the restaurant to open.

We passed the Market place where my favorite clothing store is, Silver Moon and Cholos a good place to have Mexican food. And the sun was still on Nico’s side of the car but just barely.

Then we arrived at the beach. The sun was shining above so Nico and I made it down to the Sand. I did not take my camera down there so use your imagination. I did not want to take the chance that I would get sand in it.

Now Nico was only to walk and collect shells on the beach so I did not bring him a change of cloths and towel. But he begged to just put his feet in the water. My reason for not wanting to take him into the water was, 10 years ago with my son;s boy, Alex we went to the beach when he was just a year old. The water was calm while we let the waves role up and lap around our feet. A rouge wave came up and I had no option but to life Alex up and while in my arms turn my back on the wave so as to not let it hit him in the face. It lifted us both up as I held on to him and just dropped us flat on my rear end. I’ve had a messed up back since then.

I am so afraid of it happening to me with Nico I just won’t take him in. I have to go to a beach where there is no wave action. But this beach does have waves. Well anyway. Nico decide to just jump in the air while we are wading and lands flat into the water and is now all wet.

So I had to let him play in the san in hopes that the sun would dry him off so we could go home. As luck would have it the cloud from my side of the car caught up with us and it rained.

Trudging up the beach with a very unhappy Nico, we headed for the car.

I took one last photo of the boat harbor before the clouds burst and off we went

As you can see my cloud connected with Nico’s cloud and this was the result.

I thought I would go down a road I had never gone down and It was quite nice in a country sort of way.
This was the view from the road.

And this was one of the houses on the raod. The only thing that would make Nico happy was to know that he was going to get a treat. I took him to Zippy’ in Wahiawa, bought him a cream puff and lunch. Of course Lunch was to be eaten first . This was implemented after much arguing.

And here is Nico in the restaurant happily waiting for his macaroni and Cheese while he colored. Thank goodness it rained on both sides of the car on the way home or I would have had him arguing to get back to the beach again.

Of Frigates and Pirates

Birds of Feather

I love Haleiwa and more often than not I will spend any spare time I have on the North Shore of the island visiting the little town. I was looking at a couple of old photos and got to wondering about the name “Haleiwa.”

Some people have told me that it got its name from the fact that the Iwa bird made its home in that area. I wondered why a bird whose Hawaiian name, Iwa, which means pirate would have a town named after it. I’d like to correct this. Actually Iwa means thief. The Frigate bird was named after the Pirate Frigates because of their swift movements and they were also thieves. The Hawaiians called the Frigate Bird Iwa or thief.

The Iwa or Frigate Bird Weather Vane

Here is a great site that I checked out full of little tidbits about the bird. http://www.susanscott.net/OceanWatch2000/oct16-00.html Among the many things she talks about is the tying of the Iwa birds better known name to pirates.

The Iwa is also known as the Great Frigate Bird. This bird does not producing enough oil for his feathers. He also does not have web feet and his legs are very short so he can’t swim well at all. But he has a 7 foot wing span and weighs under 4 pounds which gives him the ability to stay in the air for many, many hours. While soaring he will dive into the water when ever he can see fish or squid floating on top.

But like as not he is also known to steal fish out of the mouths of other birds as they are flying. Hence a Pirate. The word frigate can be connected to the Pirate ships, according to Susan Scott, going back to the 18th century.

Anyway, the Hawaiians did not look on the name, Iwa, as  negative. If you look into this site it states that Kamehameha the Great who united the Hawaiian Islands, was also called the Frigate Bird that hooks the islands together. This is a nice site and you might enjoy it. http://kailahawaii.com/2010/01/06/hawaiian-word-of-the-day-%CA%BBiwa/

You don’t see many of these Iwa birds out in Haleiwa today, though I’ve read they did once nest out there.  You are more likely to see them on the windward side of the island http://www.hawaiianatolls.org/research/NOWRAMP2002/features/frigatebird.php

But for me, robber baron, thief of the Booby Bird catches, or just a weather vane on the top of Liliuokalani Church in Haleiwa, his name means a trip to the country for me. And in that instance we are birds of a feather

The Weather Vane sits atop of Liliuokalani Church in Haleiwa