I’m at the end of my first full day in Hawaii. I smiled as soon as I landed at the airport at Kona at the sound of all the birds I didn’t recognize and at the lush vegetation: palm trees, mango trees and a bunch of others with wonderfully rich scents. The air here is moist and full. Flowers are plentiful here as are the insects and lizards. Just as I was writing this, I caught a little lime green lizard running across the balcony. Not sure what he is doing but he’s really checking out that cactus a lot! The birds are wild fuchsia colours of yellow, pink, lime and blue. At the Farmer’s Market, I watched enthralled as a gorgeous rooster sidled across the parking lot. The energy here is feminine, open, and receptive. Beauty is important to the Hawaiian people and is revered. The word that comes to mind to describe Hawaii is: abundant. I certainly remember that feeling when I was here the last time at age six. I feel in my element in some ways here. Here is a photo of me and my sister when we were last here (I am eldest- on the right):
I explored Kailua Village today right by the ocean. I talked to locals to learn where to go to eat good food. To my surprise, it ended up being a history lesson! Breakfast here is served with none other than traditional Portuguese “sausage” or chourico, as we call it and it was GOOD! Apparently, even the MacDonalds here sell Portuguese sausage and rice! It was a staple brought by the Portuguese sugar cane and coffee plantation owners and it has stuck ever since. At the Farmer’s Market, I talked to a young woman who was selling traditional “Tapa” paintings made by her uncle and her family. It is made by beating the long narrow strips from the inner bark of paper of the Mulberry tree with a wooden mallet to make the tapa canvas on which a traditional image or sigil is drawn. “Ohana” or family is really important to Hawaiians and that is reflected in the symbols: women and children, dads and daughters, dads and sons, and lovers. The warrior and the goddess are also archetypes that are celebrated here. It feels like Hawaiian people know the balance between the masculine and feminine and celebrate it.
The funniest thing I came across today was “Church in a Tent.” Yes- that is what it is called. It is a Catholic Church that is held outdoors behind the Farmer’s Market in Kona. I didn’t go to the service today but it looked like it easily could seat about 500 folks!