Honolulu angel

4 10 2017

Blessed is she who feeds the homeless and the hungry. “She” is an island woman named Kiana.

Every Wednesday around half past noon, more or less, a group of adults gather outside of the Library of Hawaii main branch near the gate to Iolani Palace for what might be their only square meal of the week. They wait quietly and politely for Kiana to faithfully arrive in her car with a delicious buffet lunch.

Here, on Likelike street, is the quiet and peaceful stage of Feed the Street. People come, they eat, they go.

She opens the trunk and unloads a tablecloth first, then an attractive spread of a home cooked lunch, including soup. The meal is free to anyone in need.

Kiana arrives. Next to the bicycle racks she sets down tablecloths to receive a car trunk load of prepared casseroles and other dishes.

Amidst the unfortunate circumstances in our country today, this kind and humble compassionate gesture begins earlier in the week with donations of raw produce from farmers and others who have a surplus or who just are more fortunate and want to give.

I have known Kiana to travel by city bus to far places on the island to pick up ingredients. She prepares the food by herself because her small studio kitchen has no room for a sous chef. I think it gives her great joy to express her creativity in this way.

Each week she publicly extends her gratitude for her “Feed the Street” project on a Facebook group called “Too Much Balances Not Enough,” listing the donors and their contributions. That is where I first learned about this activity.

Today I wanted to see a part of Kiana’s world. I put together some small zip top bags of feminine hygiene products, that I learned are very appreciated in addition to food, and went down to Likelike street. Like clockwork, people slowly began to congregate–about 12 when I first arrived and building to 24 or 30 when I left.

Hungry folks wait politely for lunch. They have much respect for Kiana who provides the food for free. Iolani Palace and downtown Honolulu are in the background.

Later Kiana said, in all 70 showed up today. She reported the women liked my small contribution that also contained items like toothbrushes, travel soaps and hand lotion, and that the men were disappointed that there weren’t any condoms.

I know there are those who are wary of homeless people, and that to befriend them would be out of their comfort zone. They don’t feel safe. Indeed, reaching out can be a problem, and Feed the Street has experienced harassment. (Having a sheriff or a cop in the vicinity might be a good idea!)

It’s not so hard to reach out with kindness to make a stranger’s hard circumstances a little better, I found out. You can bet the homeless don’t always feel safe themselves, but you could tell they trust Kiana.

Kiana is a cheerful, woman warrior. Thank you, Kiana. I love you, angel.

Today’s spread is all vegan except for one dish that contains pork. Kiana told me she likes to prepare 14 different menu items.

Everything is nutritious and tastes as good as it looks.

Advertisements




The art goes on on the Windward side

3 10 2017

The Windward Artists Guild’s current exhibition at Hoomaluhia Botanical Garden’s Visitor Center main gallery features the visual art of 49 of its members through October 28. It is open from 9 am to 4 pm daily.

A reception will be held from 4 to 6 pm on Saturday, October 21, when visitors may meet the artists.

The entrance to the garden is at the end of Luluku Road between Pali and Likelike highways in Kaneohe, Oahu.

It’s beautiful show.

My “Royal Archival Banyan” (top center) is making the gallery rounds, but this is the first time with the Windward Artists Guild.

Paper collage is among the variety of art media.

“Birdsong” in stoneware by Dagmar Kau

Intriguing 3-dimensional works

“Stormy” raku ceramic by Barbara Guidage

Many of the art works are for sale. Contact Cynthia Schubert at c_schubertrichmond@hotmail.com

I love this whimsical triptych “Les Trois Parapluies” by Cindy Mochel-Livermore. Too bad it’s NFS.

 





Harvesting for Makahiki

28 09 2017

The urge to harvest food from the home garden tells me the Hawaiian Makahiki season soon will be upon us. When Makahiki starts, in early November this year, all feuding and all work in the fields end. The harvest is over, we remain friends, and it’s time to call on others and play—for four months!

Today I pulled out 7-1/2 pounds of ‘uala, or sweet potatoes, of various shapes and sizes from the semi-circular patch out front. At the same time I plucked and saved the edible tender sweet potato leaf shoots. I rinsed and dried the greens and reserved them for sandwiches and salads.

‘Uala (Sweet potato)

Adjacent to the ti leaf and panax hedge, the semi-circular bed of sweet potatoes is 85% harvested.

I pluck and use only the growing tip of the vine. Any other part of the vine is too tough and not as tasty, in my opinion.

I rinsed greens carefully under running water for some tasty crunch in a cheese sandwich.

I also gathered kou tree blossoms that fell from above to make a saffron- or ochre-colored dye bath.

Tubular flowers from a kou tree

What now? I prepared candied sweet potatoes and an uala leaf and tofu salad for dinner, and I reserved the kou flowers for later when I can organize a day of fabric dyeing and decorating with my artsy friends.

I roasted sweet potato chunks in the oven and baked them a second time with butter, a little salt, brown sugar, and rum to make them taste like Thanksgiving candied yams!

For this tofu salad, blanching the leaves and a vinaigrette dressing has darken the leaf color.

How about a Makahiki party soon to enjoy the bounty? There are lots more sweet potatoes!

“Lono i ka Makahiki!”





It’s a small thing

21 09 2017

It’s a small thing in comparison.

We have been without kitchen lights since a car down the highway hit a fire hydrant that spewed water into the air like a geyser that most likely affected power lines above. All that was corrected except the house solar system went down, and is still down. The solar people are coming today to take a look, and hopefully Pete can observe what they do so he can fix it himself next time. It’s a small inconvenience compared to the distress people are experiencing from natural disasters in other parts of the world. We count our blessings, offer prayers, and are reminded to prepare for emergencies.

And now, to put a smile on your face and brighten your day, here is last evening’s gift from our garden — a night blooming cereus blossom.

Night blooming cereus





Relaxation at Bellow Beach Park

5 09 2017

Bellows Beach Park at Waimanalo, Oahu, remains a favorite picnic venue for local folks. Here is my photo record of a most relaxing day with friends this Labor Day. Lucky we live Hawaii.

Joe and Girly’s gang at Bellows every Labor Day and Memorial Day. It’s a standing invitation. Sun, surf, shade, barbecue, libations, music all day long.

 

The Moku Lua punctuate tints of veridian, cobalt, and ultramarine of the sea and sky.

 

Restful tideline

Bodysurfing anyone?

 

Bellows is popular with families.

 

🙂

 

The view toward Makapu‘u with skies so clear we could see Moloka‘i, Lana‘i, and Maui islands in the distance beneath the clouds.

 

Catch a wave!

 

Salmon belly on the grill

 

Roasting veggies

 

“‘Okole Maluna” means “Bottoms Up.”

 

Yummy

Mahalo e Ke Akua.





August treat: night blooming cereus

22 08 2017

Spectacular night blooming cereus blossoms. Photos copyright 2017 Rebekah Luke

For the second night in a row I remembered to go into the front garden to view the night blooming cereus. Each bud opens up for one night only and will start closing at dawn.

I acquired cuttings of this plant from the historically famous hedge on the lava rock walls of Punahou School in Honolulu when I saw the gardener trimming the sprawling cactus one day. I pulled my car over and loaded the trunk with the pokey “arms.”

Tonight’s bloom is the largest of mine to date. I figured out that trimming encourages blooms and controls willy-nilly spreading. A layer of pohaku (rock) in a free form shape on the ground tells me where to trim so that the cereus is confined to a definite area.

Gosh, after tonight I’ll have to wait until next August to see the next bloom of these beautiful flowers.

Copyright 2017 Rebekah Luke





The Bathhouse (Kaʻaʻawa)

15 08 2017
“The Bathhouse (Kaʻaʻawa)” oil on canvas by Rebekah Luke. Private collection.

This photo arrived in the email today. What a surprise and a thrill! “How much is this painting? My mom wants to know. She got it in 1991,” the inquirer wrote.

There was a photo of the back of the painting on which I wrote “1991,” but on looking at my record book, I saw that the painting (no. 29) was purchased in 1993 by a nice couple of Kaʻaʻawa who collected memorabilia of our town.

Some years afterward I looked for the buyers to ask if I could make a digital photo of their painting and was told they had moved. But now, I have a photo!

I told Tj*, who emailed me, the amount I sold the painting for, and to whom, and the average price of my paintings today. (Watching “Antiques Roadshow” on TV, I really should raise my prices! 😉)

The painting was part of a series of images of all the manmade public structures in Kaʻaʻawa, including the two bridges. They were unveiled at Swanzy Beach Park where park director Patty Greene had the kids hand paint and put out a sandwich board sign that read simply “Everybody Come.” I still have that sign. Minnie Akiona from the Kaʻaʻawa Country Kitchen across the highway brought over a tray of Chinese noodles and other refreshments.

Then the pictures were shown at an exhibit entitled “Painting the Town” in conjunction with the play “Chicago” at Diamond Head Theatre. Some of the paintings were bought by neighbors, and at least two pieces of the collection (the 8 a.m. flag raising in the school yard and the bookmobile) are hanging in the Kaʻaʻawa school office because the principal bought them.

So much for no. 29. My most recent oil painting “Glass Full of Daisies” was no. 202. I sent it to Texas in June as our wedding gift to Aunt Ross. It’s good to keep records, and I am happy to provide the provenance of an art piece.

* Epilogue: Tj emailed back to say her mom is the daughter of the original purchasers of “The Bathhouse…” and that the painting is still hanging in the house.

~ Rebekah Luke








%d bloggers like this: