The iron gate painted orange stayed open. It was nearly time to leave, to say farewell, and Aloha.
I walked out to walk back in, just to let the old Mango tree know I was about to leave for good. Just then, I was back, walking back, and around it to touch it. Too many thoughts cluttered my mind joined by a fierce fear of the unknown, and as I stood behind the tree holding it hold me. I thanked it for always dropping a good sized mango at my feet. I looked down and saw the heart shaped vine… Where on earth did it come from ? Oh , these signs just keep me going still… So, I said good bye… I hung the heart shaped vine at the entrance from my heart.
That’s the way it was. That’s the way it is.
Are we ever surprised by subtle heartfelt designs ? I have been every time and they still appear… Back then both Frank and Paul maintained some balance in the ever growing, spreading joyous plants, shrubs, trees, and flowers… It could have been left to become thick, and luscious as in the rainforest… In retrospect, that would have been awesome !
These two gentlemen may be sitting together over a plate of sticky rice with Teriaky beef to recall the time on our property. We celebrated their friendships, and remember their family, their stories. The largest Haas avocados on the planet grow from trees in the gulch with a stream on Frank’s family acreage. Dear Paul may see Frank at St. Joseph’s on Sundays where he volunteers with all that is needed including stacking the shelves with goods for the needy. Dear Frank is the grave digger and he proudly has had the job since a teenager. Oh, I miss them. They were part of our holy encounters.
In our yard, the guavas abundantly spoiled us and what was left to fall on the ground grew shoots of more trees… much like a weed… The lemons, the oranges, the limes, the bananas all at one time, gave us a sense of the heavens.
Upcountry Kula is said to be the best climate in the entire world. Makawao, Haiku, and Huelo are more wet, and abound in Lilikois… The passion fruit just grows as a vine and blooms first as a flower… Hana is the ultimate center of growth though still remote enough to have stayed mostly untouched, reserved, yet enticing. There the black sand beaches attract the tourists. The locals serve and keep a bench by the road with goodies and a tin can for a calabash donation. It is a place where jewelry makers display enchanting necklaces, earnings, and the ever lovely leis… No matter the distance once on the island one feels at home. Maybe the ukulele, maybe the breeze, or the all encompassing ocean, mountain, and life abounding “AINA”, the land, cradles the soul. That was my experience.