Thursday, December 06, 2007

Hawaii, my Ku'uipo

Last night I found the Israel Kamakawiwo'ole CD, "Alone in IZ World," and played it as I fell asleep. Ever since I've been homesick for Hawaii, my sweetheart, my Ku'uipo. So in honor of Pink and Blues Girls Flashback Thursday I'm going to indulge myself a bit and write this lovepost in honor of the place I once called home and am missing dearly today.

Have you ever had that odd sensation of coming home? I don't mean returning home from college for Christmas break, although the feelings are similar. I mean landing in a place you've never been before and feeling like it was the place meant to be the setting for your life? And like a tuning fork your heart resonates whenever there? Hawaii was that for me. It's the only place I still have reoccurring dreams about, and when I wake up I feel melancholy and apart.

But enough of that. On to the good stuff. As I closed my eyes last night and listened to the very local Hawaiian music I remembered so many things:

  • I could hear the ocean through the open louvers, either in my dorm room or my bedroom off-campus, and didn't realize just how loud it was until I returned to the mainland.

  • The airport smells like a flower fest with the scent of carnation, plumeria, and orchid so strong you carry it back across the ocean with you.

  • Polynesians raise their eyebrows intermittently throughout a conversation to let you know they're listening.

  • POG (passion, orange, and guava juice) is thicker and sweeter than your average juice.

  • No matter how long I lived there, poi still tasted like kindergarten glue paste.

  • However, the taste of breadfruit grew on me and for the longest time I couldn't imagine eating chicken without it.

  • When you're a starving college student there's nothing like being invited to a traditional wedding reception complete with a luau (which includes a double breasted buffet line with real Kalua pig).

  • McDonalds has a special Hawaiian menu that includes the teriyaki burger (yum!) and rice as a side dice.

  • Oh, and since I'm talking about food, my favorite thing to eat at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) was the Spam roll (like a California roll only with Spam).

  • My favorite job EVER was as a Japanese tour guide at the PCC.

  • Every evening as I walked from the cafeteria to the library I was serenaded by the loud music blaring from the PCC night show.

  • Pulling my hair up in a bun with chopsticks was considered uber-cool.

  • Every slack-key guitar or ukelelei song sounds like love to me.

  • The hula. Ah. What more can I say?

Like a love-sick girl I could go on and on forever, but I'll spare you. Still, I hope you've caught the Aloha spirit from this one little post and will have a better day because of it. And here are my pictures. 1)BYU-Hawaii, 2)The LDS Temple as seen from Hukilau Beach, and 3)Hukilau Beach


Tola said...

amen and amen! i miss byuh too.

Erin said...

I have to agree with you on the poi. I was only in 2nd grade but the taste stays with you-gray runny paste.

suburbancorrespondent said...

BYU has a campus in Hawaii?

shauna said...

It sure does. Althought it's super small--maybe 3000 students at the most? It's fun though--and you know everyone, at least by face.

linds said...

Hawaii is my favorite and so is Israel. Although we haven't listened to his version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" in a long time. It reminds us of a family member who passed away.

I bet you miss Hawaii so much! Thanks for passing on some Aloha spirit. I have only been there once, and I even miss it.

Rosie said...

Your post made me homesick! It has been 20 years since I attended BYU-HC and I still feel homesick for it. It was the most healing, comforting, loving place I have ever been in my life. I had some tragic events in my life during my semesters there. I found safety, healing and love. I may have to copy your post.

LikeAstaR said...

beautiful.. I always thought I would like to try a semester there.