By Virginia Beck
The North Star swings away and the days grow longer. We have circled our home star one more time, and the spring solstice has passed, giving us longer days. Soon, we will see the last of the koholā, the humpback whales, herding their new calves north to Alaskan waters. It is always bittersweet to see them disappearing with a tail slap on their return journey home.
Their departure reminds us of the changing seasons, and how one joy moves on to make room for the next one.
If you have children, make sure to take them where they can see whales offshore. Otherwise, you can get a chance to see them down at Port Allen, catching one of the boat tours that will take you out along the Na Pali Coast. Or hike along the coast and take binoculars so you can see them at play. While hikes along the Māhā‘ulepū cliffs may be too rigorous for some, you can often spot whales offshore along Poʻipū Beach Park. The hours before sunset are a particularly good time. Hurry before they are gone.
We are so blessed to live in protected ocean waters. This is helping the repopulation of many endangered animals. In our lifetime, we have seen whale populations increase, but that may not last forever. The opportunity to witness these large sea mammals surfacing is one of the miracles of this planet. April brings Earth Day, so it is good to teach children what they need to cherish and protect.
Spring is always a time of preparation, of gathering energies, of planting and growing anything and everything, flowers and projects. For Hawai‘i, the Merrie Monarch Festival on the Big Island will call some of our most beautiful, talented and dedicated hula dancers into last minute actions; gathering flowers and liko, or small leaves of the ʻohiʻa, and maile to make lei for their dances. Hula performances will be everywhere, and we will all be glued to the television to see this traditional competition of beauty and grace.
Hula festivals and song contests are huge community activities. We follow them and watch them with the same fervor and attention that Mainland folks give their favorite sports teams. What adds a unique spirit to these activities is the amount of Hawaiian cultural lore and history that passes from a generation to another, as the dances, preparations and history of the chants and songs are shared.
Spring gets us ready, warming us up for Lei Day and graduations. You haven’t lived until you see how kids on Kaua‘i get ready for their prom events! Not just the glamor and the bling; but the beauty, the grace and the flowers! Honestly, our blended families have created the most beautiful young people in the world. And I bet we have more of them per square foot than anywhere on the planet.
Particularly wonderful are the Project Grad events — all night affairs to help kids celebrate graduation without danger of serious mishaps or fatal accidents. Hats off to dedicated parents, school counselors and community volunteers who help our teens find entertainment and fun in safety. Mahalo to you all for celebrating lives!
- Virginia Beck, NP and Certified Trager® Practitioner, offers Wellness Consultation, Trager Psychophysical Integration and teaches Malama Birth Training classes. She can be reached at 635-5618.