Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tiki Cave

ALOHA, Sunday Friend!



click on photos if you like, eh?
Sand Island Access Road is an industrial area of our Honolulu
known for shipping, industry, and marinas.

<>

"Creation, we are taught is not an act that happened once upon a time,
once and for ever. The act of bringing the world into existence is a continuous process.”
Abraham Joshua Heschel

It's also home to La Mariana, a private marina.






LM is known for it's piano bar and restaurant.
It is like making a trip back to the tiki bars of the 50's.






Wonderful specimens are everywhere in abundance...








This fellow is eating a delicious pig.



While we ate, my friend told me about a time
when he was wandering about on the Big Island, Hawaii.





He came upon a cave full of very old Tikis.





What were they doing there,
these family heirlooms passed down
over generations?






The missionaries
told the people to
burn
these "infernal, pagan images."






Imagine
the extra-terrestrials landing among us.





Their technology is clearly far ahead of ours.
They tell us that our beliefs are primitive;





Then they tell us to burn
our churches, synagogues, mosques & temples.







Unable to part with the spiritual treasures
that our parents and grandparents valued,
we might bury the Torahs, Bibles, statues, & symbols.







And that's what happened
to the Hawaiian people.

Sleep well, gods!







ALOHA Friend,
cloudia

Saturday, November 28, 2009

ALOHA Saturday

It's ALOHA Saturday
in Waikiki
and YOU are most welcome!




click on photos for all the usual reasons

"Self is the only prison that can ever bind the soul."

Henry van Dyke




"If we are to achieve results never before accomplished,
we must expect to employ methods never before attempted."
Sir Francis Bacon





"The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy."

Emily Dickinson


<>< <>< ><>


Kindness

Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and
purchase bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
it is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you every where
like a shadow or a friend.




Naomi Shihab Nye



ALOHA, cloudia


Friday, November 27, 2009

The Shopping Season

ALOHA, Friend
&
Welcome Back to WAIKIKI

click on photos, eh?
Royal Hawaiian Vista




"A leaf fluttered in through the window this morning,
as if supported by the rays of the sun,
a bird settled on the fire escape, joy in the task of coffee,
joy accompanied me as I walked."
Anais Nin




Walking Man's Hula Lesson

"For me, the vast marvel is to be alive.
For man, or for flowers or beast or bird,
the supreme triumph is to be most vividly and perfectly alive."
Al Purdy










“Education is a kind of continuing dialogue,
and a dialogue assumes different points of view.”

Robert M. Hutchins



<><


Ah, "Black Friday!"
Consumerism run riot.
Some commence a season of
hurry;
others of us
simply enjoy this annual
respite from the ordinary.

Whatever your day holds,
take a moment
to pause
and look at where you've come.

Congratulations!


ALOHA,
cloudia

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

ALOHA
&
Happy Thanksgiving to
Y O U
from
WAIKIKI



click on photos for a deeper look
A time for family. . .


"There would be no society
if living together depended upon understanding each other."
Eric Hoffer





"Most men know what they hate,
few know what they love."
Charles Caleb Colton


Getting ready for the holidays at the Sheraton Waikiki



"In the sick room, ten cents' worth of human understanding
equals ten dollars' worth of medical science."
Martin H. Fischer


Wishing you a contented holiday!



A L O H A, cloudia


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Stroll

ALOHA, Friend

Welcome to Wednesday in Honolulu

click on photos gently
Welcome to Wednesday in Honolulu

Let's take a stroll through local history. . .
just off busy King St.




"It is such a secret place, the land of tears.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupery






"I am like a falling star who has finally found her place next to another in a lovely constellation, where we will sparkle in the heavens forever.”


Amy Tan






“To leave a place is to die a little”

French Proverb







“Write injuries in sand, kindnesses in marble”

French Proverb



"With Jesus in Heaven"






"Killed by Automobile"


"Ask yourself: Have you been kind today?
Make kindness your daily modus operandi
and change your world."
Annie Lennox


<><
It can be very peaceful visiting with the people
who built our Hawaii of today.


They still have lasting lessons to teach us.



Hawaiians, Portuguese, Diplomats, Americans, Tahitians,
Royalty and Religious. . .



All together here as in life.




Thank you for all you did!
There is no place like Honolulu, my home.



ALOHA, cloudia

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Flying Fish

ALOHA Friend

Welcome to Tuesday in Waikiki




click on photos for Hawaiian Flair
"The Internet is just a world passing around notes in a classroom."
Jon Stewart




view from da bar


"A stout heart breaks bad luck."

Cervantes




you can see my reflection!





"The ocean refuses no river."
Sheila Chandra




<>< <>< ><>



Hope you enjoyed your weekend!

Last evening at dusk
I was in my kayak
contemplating
the enormity
of the moment
when
suddenly
a school of silver fish
took to the air
and flew before me in an arc!

Wish you could have been there,
but I thought of
you.



ALOHA, cloudia

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Visit

ALOHA
to
Y O U

Welcome to Sunday In Waikiki



click on photos if you wish to enter


"In the end what people notice most
is whether we are paying attention to them and whether we make a commitment."
Nick Corcodilos





Gem


"Rewards and punishments are the lowest form of education"
Chuang-tzu



Paging Count Basie!




"Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you."
Maori Proverb


<>< <>< <>< ><>


Thanks for visiting today.
May your Sunday be a gift.



ALOHA, cloudia

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Lions & Mummers

A L O H A

To <:> YOU

It's Saturday in Honolulu




Another Glorious Day




Can you smell the holidays?
Thanksgiving approaches
then the Season really gets rolling.

But
Christmas, Hanukkah,
New Years, yes, even Kwanzaa

are just the lead-up
to my favorite season of all:
Lunar or Chinese New Year!

There's nothing like the sound of
gongs & drums from blocks away,
drawing me irresistibly:

LIONS!

Gung Hee Fat Choy,
y'all!







But what could make someone from back east
such a fan of big noise, and ecstatic festival?

Then it hit me:





The Philadelphia Mummers parade has been held (almost) every
New Year's Day since 1901.


There are four divisions:
Comic, Fancy, Fancy Brigade and String Band.

Comic division clubs lampoon modern day local and national political and social themes. . .


String Band division clubs wear elaborate costumes like the Fancy and Fancy Brigade divisions, and also drill and perform playing
saxophones, banjos, accordions, violins, bass violins, and percussion.


The clubs are made up of working guys who practice after work,
many are second, third, or longer generation in the Mummers.
Each clubs is a neighborhood institution indeed.
They are known for their unique sound,
and also for their
elaborate costumes of glitter, sequins and feathers ."




Of course,
the MOST important part of the tradition
is the
Mummer's Strut.
Every Philadelphian has it in their soul.
Here it is
with the iconic song:
Oh Dem Golden Slippers.




Yo! Aloha!
cloudia


more about the Mummers' History: http://www.suncoastmummers.com/mummers_history.htm

Friday, November 20, 2009

What-Ifs Don't Count

A L O H A

YOU!


Welcome to Friday in Waikiki



click on photos for increased sensuality

"Living well is the best revenge."

George Herbert


Moorish Idol and Drab Pal

"Whenever people say 'we mustn't be sentimental,'

you can take it they are about to do something cruel.

And if they add, 'we must be realistic,'

they mean they are going to make money out of it."

Brigid Antonia Brophy


They Spin, Swirl and Tack like fighting kites. These beauties hang out near my boat.

"I like life. It's something to do."

Ronnie Shakes


<>< <>< ><>


"What-if"
is a waste of time and energy.
Sure,
do a household fire drill;
do your homework,
visit the dentist.

I'm talking about:
"What if!"
Free floating angst
masquerades as prudence
but it really is
a jackal.


When the time comes
should it come
you will find in those moments
a way, a hint, a grace
that what-ifs
do not call up.

So do not worry,
it's just a pernicious habit.
Trust yourself
trust life
trust your faith.


Spin and tack
in the currents of life.
You are one beautiful
fish.



A L O H A! cloudia

Thursday, November 19, 2009

World's Best Weather

A L O H A, My Friend!


Welcome to Thursday
Here in Waikiki



click on photos to smell it!
Ocean Safety: City & County of Honolulu Lifeguards





"The great thing about getting older is that
you don't lose all the other ages you've been."
Madeleine L'Engle







How you get your surfboard to da beach!






"The most exhausting thing in life is being insincere.

That is why so much social life is exhausting."

Anne Morrow Lindbergh


Back Alley of Waikiki

"That it is shallow to judge by appearences is a well-known saying.

That it is shallow to dismiss appearances is a lesser-known truth."

Yahia Lababidi





Our weather here in Waikiki has been beautiful and breezy.

Cool & pleasant to us, but don't worry:

it will definitely feel like the nicest day

of Summer when you get here.

The Triple Crown of Surfing is happening now on Oahu's

world famous North Shore.

I'm so glad that you stopped by today to visit me

here at da beach!

Hope you enjoy today's pictures and quotes.

If you would like to see videos of the world's top surf athletes, just click the link

below.



http://www.triplecrownofsurfing.com/reefblog/video.php


ALOHA, cloudia

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Happy New Year!

A L O H A Friends


Happy Hawaiian New Year!


click on photos to unleash the dazzle
Waikiki Flats
All of today's photos courtesy of Ted Trimmer

"Your vision will become clear
only when you can look into your own heart.
Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakens."
Carl Jung



Plumeria



"You're writing the story of your life one moment at a time."
Doc Childre and Howard Martin


Hawaii State Flower: Yellow Hibiscus



"Life begets life. Energy creates energy.
It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich."
Sarah Bernhardt



In the old times, Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiians) studied nature and her changes closely, especially the movements of the heavens. The first sliver of November's new moon (today!)marks the beginning of Hawaii's winter months, the Makahiki Season that some call Hawaiian New Year.

It was by navigating across the vast Pacific, guided by the star Hokule`a (the star of gladness) that the first people had voyaged to Hawaii Nei. Their children trusted the wisdom embodied in the stars to indicate proper times to plant, harvest, observe festivals, or even when to make war.
The stars have guided the Hawaiians from the kahiko
(ancient) days.

Makahiki begins with the appearance in the eastern sky of a star constellation called in Hawaiian: Na Huihui o Makali`i, in which name my poor Hawaiian sees the (na) club (hui, saying it twice a sort of emphasis) eyes (maka) Ali`i (royal chiefs); perhaps "The League of Watching Chiefs" would not be an entirely incorrect translation. Yes, "The Pleaides," or Seven Sisters, as they are called in English, are very significant to foundational Hawaiian thought. In fact, according to the ancient tradition, the first Hawaiian people came to Earth from the Makali`i!
The star-based Hawaiian calendar has always placed a special significance on these interstellar ties to the Makali`i.

For four months, the Ho`o-ilo (winter season) will be taken up by the Makahiki, the year's most important holiday and traditional celebration of the harvest. It is a time of personal rest, and spiritual & cultural renewal, a 'jubilee' so to speak.
It was a time when all wars and battles were ceased, tributes and taxes were paid by each district to the ruling chief, sporting competitions and contests between villages were organized, and festive events were commenced. Even some of the rigid kapu (taboos) were suspended for this period of rest and renewal. As in the Bible, the land lay fallow in preparation of the next growing season. The Makahiki is considered a species of "first fruits" festivals common throughout the world's first nations. It is cousin of our own American and Canadian Thanksgiving, of Oktoberfest, and numerous other harvest celebrations of our present day as well.


Though a somewhat similar holiday period was observed throughout Polynesia it was here in pre-contact Hawaii that the festival reached its fullest flower. Lono, the god of peace, agriculture and fertility, was especially propitiated during this period. Lono was said to be embodied in a certain clustering of dark clouds, in thunder, in the partial rainbow, whirlwinds, and even waterspouts - all Hawaii winter phenomena.

The Hawaiian Makahiki festival proceeded in a clockwise circle around the island. The image of Lono (Akua Loa - a long pole with a strip of white tapa cloth) was carried thither by the kahuna. It is said that Captain Cook's sails resembled these lono standards. Arriving as he did during Makahiki assured a peaceful visit. It was not till he returned unexpectedly later that tension developed. You see, at the very end of the Makahiki festival, the chief would go off shore in a canoe. When he stepped back on the beach, a group of his warriors threw spears at him which he had to deflect or parry. Success proved his worthiness to continue his rule. Perhaps Cook merely failed to "duck," proving unworthy?

Today, late November is still the beginning of the Ho`o-ilo (winter or rainy season) in our modern Hawaii. The Makali`i cluster once again rises at sunset and sets at dawn, visible through the night. The Heavenly Chiefs are still watching. Lono, god of peace and harvest, will remain close until Kau (summer) begins with the Makali'i rising in the dawn's east, no longer visible in the dark, sacred night.
Till then, Lono is said to be in the rain that falls from the Kona (southern) direction. So you see, even now the ancient energies renew the vitality of our `aina (land), nourishing our gardens with liquid blessing.

Todays Makahiki events and activities are practiced in abbreviated form. Still, there are said to be Hawaiian souls who return from the past to embrace their descendants and Hawaii people of today. Island residents still hear ancient drums sounding on certain nights, especially near ancient Heiau (temples) and other sites of timeless significance. Some have even witnessed spectral apparitions, processions of chiefly spirits in ancient regalia, along the ancient, half forgotten ala (paths).



So brew another cup. Pull the covers tighter around you, and listen to the whisperings of your own local gods in the branches and among the buildings. It is a time of rest and renewal; a time of looking forward and back.

Happy MAKAHIKI season to you. Let the games & feasting begin!
A L O H A ! Cloudia















Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What Else is Down There?

ALOHA Friends!
Welcome to the Sea Floor off of Oahu



They Exist!

“The fishermen know that the sea is dangerous and the storm terrible, but they have never found these dangers sufficient reason for remaining ashore”
Vincent van Gogh



Emerging from History


“There are fish in the sea better than have ever been caught”
Irish Sayings





Short "Teaser" for Tonight's Program

Submarine Archeology Score




The 1-401 submarine carried three folded-wing fighter/bomber aircraft in an


on-board hangar. The sub could surface and launch her planes in a matter of minutes.


One of the missions they were designed for was to bomb the Panama Canal.

"These subs were bigger than nuclear subs, the largest diesel subs ever built. They could launch aircraft, stay submerged and run 37,500 miles -- 1 1/2 times around the globe -- without refueling."
John Wiltshire, acting director of HURL (Hawaii Undersea Research Laboratory)

It was HURL submersibles Pisces IV and Pisces V that found several of these 60-year-old Japanese submarines in February. The Geographic Channel partly funded and documented their mission for a special, "Hunt for the Samurai Subs," premiering TONIGHT as a crown jewel of the network's second annual Expedition Week.

This legendary class of submarines was developed by the WWII- era Japanese Empire using revolutionary technology. They were the largest submarines ever built -- 400 feet long -- until nuclear-powered submarines were built in the 1950s and 1960s. Had they become operational sooner, they might have had a big impact on the outcome of the war in the Pacific. Plans included the bombing of New York and Washington DC.

The U.S. Navy came into posession of the submarines at the end of WWII, sailing five of them from Japan to here to Pearl Harbor for inspection. A veteran involved in the transfer has reported that other than being unable to read the printing on the instruments, the American submariners had little trouble operating the vessels. The boats were ultimately sunk off of Oahu's coast (1946) in order to avoid sharing their technology with our Cold War adversaries, the Russians, per treaty as our WWII allies.

Tonight, "The Hunt for the Samurai Subs" on the National Geographic Channel tells their story.


One key interviewee is Atsushi Asamura, a kamikaze pilot assigned to the I-401 aircraft-carrying submarine.




Go to http://www.pacerfarm.org/i-400/ for a detailed memoir onboard the I-401 by the late Tom Paine that begins:

"This saga recounts my adventures during the last voyage of His Imperial Japanese Majesty's Sensuikan Toku (Special Submarines). In 1945 I returned from World War II as Executive Officer and Navigator of the U.S. Navy prize crew in one of these aircraft-carrying giants: H.I.J.M.S. I-400. Sailing her from Sasebo, Occupied Japan, to Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, seemed a fitting finale to my career in the Submarine Service. . ."




I just love tales of technology, and of the deep.


How about


YOU?







ALOHA! Cloudia













Monday, November 16, 2009

Morning Moon Whispers Secrets

A L O H A
Welcome to Monday in Waikiki,
Friend!
click on photos to reveal what is hidden to the quick glance
Morning Moon



"Celebrity is just obscurity
biding it's time."
Carrie Fisher






Purring Ripples, Barking Sparkles






"Life happens too fast for you to ever to think about it. If you could just persuade people of this, but they insist on amassing information."

Kurt Vonnegut






Jolly Jelly Fish





"Many people try to run away from their inner loneliness.
They do not know how to be alone. They do anything to escape being alone. They are always on the go; they are always doing something. To live meaningfully, we must master one of the fine arts of life -
learning how to be alone without being lonely."
Paul Osumi





<>< + ><>
We are magnets
We attract what we love
or hate
or obsess about.
Complaints always worsen
a situation.




What we focus on
always grows.
Imagination
is stronger than will
and always wins.
Will power is just for
short bursts.
Imago is our creative force.





Without feeling
nothing occurs.
Emotion is the energy
that causes the thought
to happen.





These rules are the difference
between being a dreamer
and a visionary.
Nonresistance
frees the
magic.
ALOHA, cloudia

Sunday, November 15, 2009

"The River Is Deep"

A L O H A
Welcome to a Lazy Sunday in Honolulu
F R I E N D !



click on photos, Frodo
He says that the river is deep,
never writes his poetry down.






But he carried moldy canvas
stuffed with type-written pages
across decades - and continents.







And so it has been,
deep that is.



And should it flow
another continent or two,



or just a handful of tomorrows,
the river has been deep,
sweet & daily,
with sparkles of eternity.





Our river is deep
indeed.

Thanks for visiting!




ALOHA, cloudia

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Saturday Friends

ALOHA
Saturday Friend!



click on photos for magic
Friends Like to Gather at Day's End. . .



"As I make my slow pilgrimage through the world,

a certain sense of beautiful mystery seems to gather and grow."


A. C. Benson







Friendly Competitors?

"Whenever a friend suceeds, a little something in me dies."
Gore Vidal





Birds of a Feather or
"I don't care if someone is blue, orange, yellow or purple..."

"The bird a nest, the spider a web, man friendship."
William Blake





Finn is a true friend.
Sure he is highly trained,
but everyone is just more relaxed when he's around.



He plays when his human companions are playful,
And he is quiet, and a good listener, when they're pensive.



Finn is the first service dog assigned to help recuperating Marines.
Everyone agrees that he boosts their morale
at the Wounded Warrior Barracks.





True Friends Require No Words:


Thank YOU
for being a Friend,
ALOHA, cloudia


Friday, November 13, 2009

Aloha Friday

It's ALOHA Friday!


Welcome Friend


click on photos to inspect deeply
Every Sparrow. . .




“I once had a sparrow alight upon my shoulder for a moment, while I was hoeing in a village garden, and I felt that I was more distinguished by that circumstance that I should have been by any epaulet I could have worn.”
Henry David Thoreau





Torch Eternal


“Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it onto future generations.”
George Bernard Shaw





Kolea in the Sun



"Never part without loving words to think of during your absence.

It may be that you will not meet again in life."

Jean Paul Richter

Moon & Mist




"Writing well mean never having to say, 'I guess you had to be there.' "
Jef Mallett





Years ago,
I used to read the Honolulu obituaries in my taxi.
Back then, every other deceased was foreign born:
China, Japan, Korea, Azores, Philippines.
Their brief stories spoke volumes about Hawaii,
what we're all about,
and how we got this way.








Later,
many obituaries mentioned birth
in places that no longer exist:
"Camp Number 7, Ewa Plantation"
That was the plantation-born generation.
What a tale those lives could tell!








Recently, I noticed an obit
for an old local woman born in China.
There was to be a Taoist Funeral,
so I went to pay my respects.
Not just to the lady and her family,
but to an entire generation.









And I longed to see, hear, and smell
a Taoist Funeral.











For some reason
I have always gravitated to things
Chinoise.
When I was a child,
there was actually a pretty standard Halloween costume:
"Chinese Person"
and I clamored to wear it
for many years.









Imagine!
An ethnicity as a Halloween costume!
But I was just a kid

and I wanted to be
Chinese.










When I got to Diamond Head Memorial Park
the viewing was taking place,
as was an outdoor gathering
of seemingly casual folks eating Dim Sum,
my favourite brunch.










I sat with some older women
who welcomed me simply.
I explained that I wanted to attend a Taoist Funeral,
and to honor the deceased, family, and generation.









They insisted that I eat.
Everything about the Chinese seems eminently sensible to me.
The ladies warmed up and talk-storied with me,
as local people will do.
I wasn't an outsider you see - being local.









One new friend said that she was glad that her ancestors
had settled in Hawaii, not San Francisco
(my other favorite town).
"There it was too ghettoized for us. Here we mix and move away from Chinatown. San Francisco too closed!"








We all agreed:
"Lucky we live Hawaii."









Then they started telling me about Hawaii Chinese funeral customs that they remembered growing up.
They spoke of keeping the deceased in the home overnight,
illegal now,
of burlap clothes,
and hired wailing mourners
making a racket in the house,
and parading down the (Honolulu) street.












These customs are growing attenuated today,
but for this honored decedent
there would be ancient ceremony,
the burning of spirit money,
and attendance by cardboard servants.










"Lots of people became Christian over here,"
my new friend explained.
Her own Goong Goong (grandmother)
had had the gift of physiognomy,
she read the truth in people's faces,
but gave it up
after Christian prayers had cured a serious illness.
Such was the tendency and pressure of those days.









The Benevolent Societies remain,
though less vital generation to generation.
And Chinatown is busy with new immigrants
from Southeast Asia, Oceania
and elsewhere.










But this family was holding a traditional funeral
to honor a woman born in the old country.
I didn't feel right taking pictures,
so my words will have to do.












The family stood attentively in two rows
facing the coffin, regalia,
and the priest with his chanting
and implements.












Chanting was punctuated by the preparation of tea.
The acolyte told the family
when to drink,
when to bow.
The tea was offered to the woman's spirit
and poured into an urn
of sand.









The acolyte also took articles right outside the chapel
to burn.
Cardboard servants-
a male and female-
were held like puppets,
raised up, and
bowed in unison to the deceased.
All very matter of fact,
all as the lady would have wanted it.











At last, Chinese music,
strings and cymbals,
was played
to my delight.











All the while,
most attendees
sat outside
eating Dim Sum
and talking.










I still have the ladies obit
and take it out
to pay her my respects.










Thank you for having me to your
last Honolulu party.











The food was delicious,
the conversation good,
your incense and music beguiled me.










Go with our respectful
gratitude.









A L O H A! cloudia