Sunday, August 19, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Sunday, August 19, 2018. Ua noho au a kupa i kou alo…

The air is still and a bit humid. Cardinals and doves call, and I wonder where the ʻapapane are. Maybe they went up the mountain seeking coolness or are flitting about elsewhere lehua-seeking.

You know how sometimes youʻre mostly minding your own business and something random (or not) pops into your head? Earlier I was poking around online, reading news snippets, and watching parts of news videos [those by Big Island Video News are especially apropos] about our current events. Media are being toured around the Park so they can see and report on the changes wrought by Pelehonuamea. It appears that from the ground, the scale and scope of Her remodeling is difficult to comprehend. Especially…especially if one is new to the scene. If one lacks context or history, how is change assessed or ascertained?

So there I was, washing the morning dishes, and out of nowhere, there was “Ua noho au a kupa i kou alo, a kamaʻāina i kou leo…” A song. In the incomparable voice of Robert Cazimero. Just like that. “I have stayed and become accustomed to your face, and familiar with your voice”. Easy to find versions on youtube. This one, by Kealii Reichel is particularly lovely…

Reichel: Ua noho au a kupa

The timeless poetry was written, some say, by Edward Nainoa in the 1890ʻs. Others suggest it was written by Emma Bush.

Yup. Bob tends toward the sentimental…Sigh…

When we meet someone, or a place, for the first time, thatʻs our baseline. The beginning. Time passes, and if weʻre lucky, familiarity grows and appreciation deepens. At some point we may pause and look back, and think or say: My! Things have changed! And we either get with the program, acknowledge change, and continue to appreciate, or, if too much the change, some get grumpy and say Nevermind!

It happened to me with Maniniʻōwali. First encounter in 1972 with Tōb. I was smitten. And returned and returned and returned, countless times. And then they bulldozed in a road. And then they built houses ma uka. And then they opened a park. And over time, infatuation changed. Though Maniniʻōwali and Kua Bay are among my ʻāina aloha, and I met and made cherished lifelong kuʻuhoa there, I rarely rarely visit these days. Back then I was often the only one on the beach or in the Maniniʻōwaliblue waters. The only one, or one of few. Now…Now get 150 cars, 300 people on the sands or in the water, bodies from almost point to point, the sand is dirty…but the people meeting Maniniʻōwali these days for the first time, I believe, are delighted, and yes, maybe as delighted as I was 36 years ago.

And so it is here at Kīlauea.

We became accustomed to the face of Kaluapele, after decades of visits, explorations, wanderings. We knew her many moods; the mists, rains, rainbows, clouds; innumerable colors, shades of light, textures; plants and birds and bugs; sounds, and scents. We knew them well. And now, though her face has changed, and will take a little getting used to, the essentials remain. If anything, the incomprehensible events of the past few months remind us that the basics still surround us. Wind and rain, pele, the sun and moon; all abide.

Even if, as above, the view to the south-ish from near Uēkāhuna looks muddied and nearly monochromatic, we at least understand why. Well…maybe not so much “Why” as “How”…

And here are things to contrast. Festive, colorful, and maybe even something to Print and Frame! Our ʻōlaʻi, in colors! These are for the past year.

And note, below, our exploquakes – those big orangyred dots on the right side of the top row – the shallowest…


Gotta run. Be back Tuesday.

As always, with aloha,

[email protected] (now you know why…)

Big Island Learning