Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Thanksgiving has come and gone here in the islands, and as the holiday season progresses, I am riding a tropical tide of emotions….all within a day I run the gamut from hot to cold…high to low, and everything in between. I will leave my hale, close my door, and look upon its bare bamboo (mom always had the best wreathes…boasting broad, balsam boughs pungent with the scent of pine). Sensing the familiar swell of sadness, I forge ahead, one foot in front of the other down my porch steps, and break into the bright Hawaiian sunshine—its warmth creating a gracious and welcome “wonderland” entirely suited to this sun-lovin' gypsy rose. I sigh in remembrance and thanks as I peer down at my bare toes peeping through my sandals—in late November.
Continuing on, I pass my landlady’s porch, freshly decorated with their holiday arbor. As I breathe in the balmy scent of the Christmas pine, and survey the scene---a turvy of tinkling lights, mobile, dancing reindeer and god-awful florescently lit, life-size Santa baubles….I am transported back, an ocean away, to my childhood in North Carolina. I can almost hear the lilting voices of the carolers spreading cheer—can almost see those same small smoke signal shafts of air sent swirling through the frosty evening air as they belted out their holiday harmonies in one accord.
I scurry faster to the car, I cannot afford to linger longer. I rev the engine and back out, pulling myself together and reminding my heart of the fact that I am presently on my way to a wondrous, Waimea swim---in late November. I then take a breath, and count to three. One…Two…Thrrrrr…..and then it begins…the radio crackles to life and (of course) the first thing I hear…”It’s Beginning to Look A lot Like Christmas!”…..(and I have to correct the faceless voices, ummm NOOO it’s not :/ Utterly annoyed (only because I realize how very much I wanted them to be telling me no lies!) I reach down to switch the station….and...okay, this is more like it… wafting through the radio waves is:
‘“Mele Kalikimaka" is the thing to say,
On a bright Hawaiian Christmas Day,
That's the island greeting that we send to you
From the land where palm trees sway,
Here we know that Christmas will be green and bright,
The sun to shine by day and all the stars at night,
Mele Kalikimaka is Hawaii's way
To say "Merry Christmas to you."’
Oh…the roller coaster of emotions at Christmas! I want off this train!
So…today I have decided to get creative….go crazy….be crafty…and bring the best of both of my lives and loves and homes this holiday. Here in Hawaii we say “Mele Kalikimaka”….but this southern girl from "North Kakalacky" has still got some roots running deep.
*To all those who I am missing this holiday, just know I am representin’ from the islands, and am ever grateful in my heart for you, especially this season.
This is my winter song to you…
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
and she's beautiful~
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Apple orchards. Pumpkin and Peppermint. Firewood burning. Smoke rising over the Blue Ridge. Fall colors fading. Meredith. My other half. Sophie. Justine. Susan. Momasita. Bubba Roo. Asheville. Mountain Java. Sweater weather. Big bed. Jacuzzi tub. Hugs. Kisses. Blue Ridge Mountain folks. Brueggers mornings. Tea time with the girls. SISTA time. Britainy. Jo-jo. A real HOMEY home. Sleeping in a bed. Nana bean. Julie, Britainy, and new babies…pretty preggy ladies. Snowy walks. Hot tea. COFFEE. Greenlife. Mountain men—with bushy beards.….Stinky patchouli hippies (I swear those rock crystals do NOT work)…go for the DEO! Artists and musicians…libertarians…fruitarians. Readers and dancers and mosaic makers. Contra Dancing. Warren Wilson. Drum circles. Art festivals. Farmers Markets. Downtown on Friday nights. Open Mics. Vegan voo doo. Karma crazies. ASHEVILLE. Brothers-in-law…brothers in all. Laughter. Warmth. Family. Holidays. Peppermint Tea. Freedom to be me. Love. Affection. Kiddos. Elven children. Rainbow mountains. Movies. Libraries. Ma mere. Tight –wrinkle-ruffle shirts from Amherst county fairs…and the women who sell them. Maloprops. Fresh Market. LIGHT. Christmas. Thanks/giving.
You are beautiful to me….more and more each day I am away~
Sunday, November 13, 2011
So I’ve been missing home a lot these days. “Home,” as in….those blue ridge mountains of the Carolinas—and the small group of beautiful, quirky cooks I call kin. It seems everywhere I turn lately I am reminded of something I miss about that majestic mountain valley. Pumpkin coffee emerging at the island 711…is not exactly Mountain Java’s cup o’ joe. Holiday lights strung along the palm tree lanes of Waikiki—smell nothing like pine to me, and frequenting the ONE pumpkin patch on the west side of da ‘aina just doesn’t feel quite right in my spaghetti strap sundress at a toasty 85 degrees.
Yes, I love, love, love my island ohana and community, but how very much do I ache for my family….extending all the way up to ma mere in Virginia, and that peaceful farmhouse that was my haven for so long. On days when I get more wistful, I have chosen to fight, to pick the present—and to peer through eyes of gratitude at this paradise---my place. I still miss the tea kettle whistling, the call of the contra with my feet tapping and skirt swirling, tinkling, elfin giggles of two pretty princess nieces as they scribble the sidewalks with chalk—and mostly their loving earth goddess mama, my picture of who I pray I can mirror more each day.
This mindset was mine as I walked the streets of Waikiki this last week…*the STREETS, not the CORNER, mind you….and I saw something catch my eye…yes, she WAS on the corner, in fact though...
A crappy, old, stringless, guitar was laying on the edging outskirts of an impromptu “garage sale.” She wasn’t pretty, and she certainly wasn’t useful at present…tossed aside in the hopes that some schmuck would come and actually put down some dough for the delight of taking this hunk of junk home. *Allow me to introduce myself….
And allow me to introduce her: my kika~
Over the course of the next two months, I am going to be loving her, getting to know her, cleaning her up, taking care of her, and making her sing, one day at a time. Yesterday, I took her to the "spa"….she has been exfoliated and buffed…and I can already tell she felt more beautiful--with each passing stroke of the sandpaper…she knows she has been seen—the potential—is present, and we go~
In two months it is Christmas. My gift to her is renewed life, and a new voice. My gift to me is a renewed voice—IN my new life. A thankful trill coming from the depths of a heart reminded--I am a woman most blessed...alone or surrounded with sisters...still or swaying amid a party of people...most blessed, indeed.
Mahalo, Kika Belle, I see you.
Saturday, November 5, 2011
You were missed.
E Komo Mai~