A party with my cousins

18 08 2019

Waking up the morning after and recalling so many moments of yesterday, challenged to name the best of them, I settled on the cliché “A good time was had by all.” The occasion was a reunion of about 45 Chong cousins, including partners, from my mother’s side of the family. My mother was the youngest of 13 who lived to adulthood. We descend from Chong How Fo and Pan Siu Chin who met in an orphanage in China.

Aunty Rosa, widow of Kim Kiu was the sole representative of the 2nd generation (who came to Hawai‘i from China) and the only one still living because Kim Kiu married her when she was comparatively younger. And it was fun to see the youth of the 5th generation.

The photos I’m sharing here were made by Jerome Osurman. Thank you, Jerome! Thanks to everyone who participated!

Cousins gather for a lunch at the Kalihi Union Church Welcome Center in Honolulu.

On-screen interviews with small groups will be edited into a new video to come.

Hula maidens Meilin and Kiri. Hula dancer Verdine is on the screen. A video of past family reunions played throughout the day.

Unique table centerpieces composed of a ti-leaf-and-pink-ginger table wreath around a goodie bag of peanut sesame candy and colorful shrimp chips. Note individual favors.

Ashley, Kiri, and Larry peruse the table of door prizes.

Kiri draws the family tree of her grandparents’ clan.

Titus and Rebekah tell viewers it’s time for the younger generation to embrace the “torch.”

5G members Jayson and Aaron

Cousin Laurie, our chief planner extraordinaire

Rebekah (that’s me) offers grace.

A good time was had by all!





My Hawaiian volcano collages

14 08 2019

LouisPohl A new exhibit of my art opens on August 27 and extends to September 27, 2019, at LouisPohl Gallery on Bethel street in downtown Honolulu. I’d love to see you at the reception on First Friday evening of September 6. Home-baked chocolate cookies!

News photographs of the 2018 eruption of Kilauea Volcano inspired me to create images in collage. I decided to go big and abstract like the feeling I have when I think of Hawaii the big island. My original collection included pieces depicting the captivating orange fire of Pele, and happily those pieces are now in private residences. The remainder of the tissue paper paintings is in comparatively quieter colors. For unity I have created a new piece entitled “Crater View” in muted tones especially for this exhibit.

Love, Rebekah





Kū Kia‘i Mauna

18 07 2019

Stand, protectors of Mauna Kea.  Eo!

In my head and in my heart all day long is the ho‘ōho (call) of “Kū Ha‘aheo E Ku‘u Hawai‘i,” a contemporary Hawaiian anthem composed by Kumu Hinaleimoana Wong. Here is the link:

https://youtu.be/mkjSeDhpcRs

Kū ha‘aheo e ku‘u Hawai‘i

Mamaka kaua o ku‘u ‘āina

‘O ke ehu kakahiaka o nā ‘oiwi o Hawai‘i nei

No ku‘u lahui e hā‘awi pu a i ola mau

 

Stand tall my Hawai‘i

Band of warriors of my land

The new dawn for our people of

Hawai‘i is upon us

For my nation I give my all so

that our legacy lives on

 

 





Crater view

9 07 2019

    Today’s palette of colored tissue paper

Just one more image. There’s a happy dent in my collection of “Fiery Volcano Collages” since three of the panels found their way to art patrons. But, a reputable gallery in downtown Honolulu has scheduled an exhibit of the collages for mid-August through September. Lucky me!

On looking at the complement, I feel the group of collages is not cohesive as is. To tie them all together I am making a picture of the “new” collapsed Kilauea crater in subdued mauve-to-neutral tones.

It looks simple, but it is not. I still will need to be mindful of turning the form, meaning, where will I put the lights, middle tones, darks? It depends on where the sun is shining from, in relation to the angle of the ground. Lava, in general, is one color.

 

Billowy textures of paper

My workshop cohort at Hoʻomaluhia Botanical Garden





Stuck in nowhere land

11 06 2019

Airports aren’t really anywhere, and neither are airplanes. I am on a journey from Honolulu to New York City, and at the moment I am on the second floor at an airport magazine kiosk and just picked out the dried mango and almonds from a package of trail mix for breakfast, downing the morsels with a cranberry drink.

I’ve just realized I will be in nowhere land at the San Jose, California, airport for about 12 hours. I arrived at this town last night and was told the temperature reached 108 degrees. This morning I had the bright idea of leaving the Motel 6 (by the way, a clean and adequate overnight accommodation for a single traveler) while it was cooler, for the airport. I envisioned hanging out at an air conditioned frequent flyer lounge, sit-down restaurants, and expensive gift shops.

San Jose Airport, it turns out, at least in the terminal I’m in, has only one lounge, and it is at gate such-and-such, but no matter. I cannot get to any gate without going through TSA security, and to do that one needs a boarding pass that I won’t have until 7 p.m. when I meet up with my group—a high school choir for which I have signed on as a chaperone. Had I been thinking, I would have cancelled the airport taxi and gone to the Denny’s across the motel parking lot for a better meal.

But, a silver lining! I see a grand piano yonder, between the elevator and the escalator. I think I’ll saunter over to play some tunes. Yes, yes, someone left a music collection of Chopin waltzes. I am never lonely when I play piano.

Tomorrow morning our group will land in The Big Apple, and the real adventure will begin.

~ Rebekah

 





Mothers Day 2019–I kept my commitment

12 05 2019

 

When the pool is filled and the fountain spurts high, Thomas Square is even more of an oasis in mid-Honolulu.

Mothers Day 2019. I kept my commitment to serve the homeless and needy in Honolulu today. The venue was Thomas Square (photos below).

My friend’s hobby is to cook and serve a delicious buffet meal to the homeless on a fairly regular basis for free. Today she added a free store. The recipe ingredients and pre-owned store inventory are largely donated. She has a handful of helpers who pack, drive, unload, unpack, set up tents and tables, serve, and break down from about 9 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. It’s rough work. The venue might change from time to time, but her regulars find her by word-of mouth. 

In the morning Thomas Square is neat and tidy; public restrooms are clean, thanks to a dedicated City & County crew. However, the park that is one square city block and planted with mature banyan trees around a circular fountain gets a little trashed during the day, I noticed, and it looks like it’s a growing hangout for folks looking for a place to sleep at night. Before, it was refreshing to see the pool with water in it and the fountain operating. Today it was dry.

“Customers” waited patiently for the food and store to be set up and then were grateful, mostly, to fill their bowls and plates. Some looked disheveled. Some were very tired. Hot soup, several kinds of salads, a meat-and-rice dish, Greek dolmas, macaroni and cheese (Gouda with bacon!), yogurt, corn dogs, chips, cold tea and water—are you hungry yet?

For me, it was a rough day in terms of interacting with this particular public. It is not in my repertoire. I returned home to read that the homeless people in Chinatown made the front page of the daily newspaper again.

It’s too bad. I think I can do this only about once a year. God’s blessings to my friend and her regular team.

Thomas Square’s refreshing-looking lawn

Mature banyan trees

Shady spot

Old sign

Fascinating aerial roots

Thomas Square, with dry pool and fountain in the foreground





Eggs

18 04 2019


Our neighborhood is having a nighttime egg hunt on Good Friday, so Maundy Thursday’s secular activity was dyeing eggs—real hard-cooked chicken eggs.

I recall the children being so excited to find “a real egg” last year. It’s been the fashion to hide plastic candy-filled eggs. Sheesh.

Ayla got right into the decorating while we noticed how competitive her Papa was in his designs.


We dye Easter eggs every year,  delighted to pass the tradition on to the next generations.

After the eggs dried, I buffed them with a little salad oil and a soft cloth for shine.

The kids are advised to bring flashlights, but they won’t need them at our place. Motion sensor lights will make the night bright as day.

Happy Easter!

~ Rebekah








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