Progress

Progress

Aloha!

There have been lots of changes in the 12 years since I began going to Oahu’s North Shore. So much of what passes for progress is really just a tearing down of the old and established.

In the old days people build a simple beach shack on the waterfront. Now those shacks are being torn down and fancy mansions are going in. This is all outside money, locals can’t afford to buy beachfront anymore. Just as anywhere, someone will always have deeper pockets. But the simple, laid-back beach lifestyle seems to be disappearing. Any given weekend on the North Shore shows cars lined up, jockeying for positions to park. People who own land get aggravated, trying to keep tourists from parking on their lawns, and in their driveways. Mike finally had to sink posts and string chain across his mom’s lawn to keep Tourist’s off it. There is a 30-year-old avocado tree in her yard there with the best avocados I’ve ever had. The pit is small, and the flesh is like butter. People come along and pick the avocados without asking, and one girl was picking so many she was reselling them at a fruit-stand. Not cool.

Here is a before photo of a beach shack on the North Shore, right at waterfront:

North Shore Beach Shack

They tore down the house next to it, and here is the brand new one being built:

New Beachfront House, North Shore

It may become a vacation rental, which will mean a clash of the old and the new, with lots of people, cars and loud parties.

Mike has three brothers and someday they will be faced with the decision to keep the beach house or sell for a tidy sum. I don’t know which way it will go, but I do know the North Shore is not the laid-back place it was. And people from thirty or fifty years ago would really have some stories to tell.

As Carly Simon sang, These are the Good Old Days.

A hui hou (til next time) . If you’d like to subscribe to this blog, please click the Follow Button on the Homepage.

Aloha, Jamaica

 

What is Pono?

Maui Weather Today: High 85, Low 70

What is Pono?

Aloha!

While visiting the North Shore, we ate at Ola’s Restaurant. It’s at the Turtle Bay Resort, http://www.turtlebayresort.com, the only hotel on Oahu’s North Shore. It’s also the only restaurant on the sand on Oahu. We like it because the food is good, and we go order from the bar menu which keeps the price down. As far as I’m concerned, you can’t beat it for the killer view.

Turns out a guy we know is now managing the restaurant. We were happily surprised to see him there, and then he told us how he got the job. They asked him three questions:
What is Ohana?
What is Pono?
And what is Aloha?

Can you answer these questions? Being able to answer these questions will give you a huge leg-up in Hawaii. I feel like an outsider here, always. And after thirteen years, I really don’t think that’s ever going to change. However, understanding what is important to the Hawaiian people makes a difference. You will see the bumper stickers: Respect the Culture. They had a monarchy and it was overthrown and they have never forgotten. Activists in the 1970’s revived the issues and there is a contingent pushing for seceeding from the U.S. Did you know that? When you live here, you are well aware of it.

Living Upcountry, we see far fewer tourists. Friends who are visiting go to the Foodland Center in Pukalani and come home and say, “Why are the locals so unfriendly? Why doesn’t anybody smile?” This is because they don’t have their  “luau” faces on. This is their daily lives, they don’t have to be “on.”

What is Pono? Do what is right.

And what is right? Respect.

A hui hou ( till next time). If you’d like to subscribe to this blog, please click the Follow button on the Homepage.

Aloha, Jamaica