I like to call the children of Hawai’i…Children of the Rainbow…because of the diversity of the races and the children that resulted from the inter-racial unions. They are beautiful in features and possess skin tones of varying degrees. I and my siblings are counted among these children. We were like free spirits; running barefoot and half-dressed, going home only when hungry or hurt. I remember my days as a child of the rainbow. No real responsibilities and life was filled with sunlight, beaches, and play. And through that time…Mama and Tutu Rose were always close by. I'm sure each of you can recall those days of the 40's and 50's when life seemed simpler. But those days passed quickly into another phase. As it says in the Bible in Ecclesiastes 3:1 “There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven.”
It was time to grow up. Go to school to learn the Western ways and learn to do the hula as most young Hawaiian ladies were expected to do during that time. Most people are not aware of it, but Hawaiian parents were forbidden to teach or speak the language to their children, not even in the privacy of their own homes. So, unfortunately, we – my siblings and I – did not learn the language to any extent. We knew words and phrases, but could not string it together enough to carry on a conversation. This was a fact that continued into the 50’s when there was some relenting. Also, the history of Hawai’i, geographically or politically, was not taught in the schools…nothing at all regarding the Hawaiian peoples was made available to its young people.
Hmmm…this is taking off in a direction I’m not intending to for this post. I just want to show you a couple of great pictures that I received from my niece and want to share with you.
Children of the Rainbow
That’s me, front row, second from left, my brother James Kaiwa is to my left. All of the young people of our church (and some not) danced to raise money for the church. We had a lot of fun being together.
My sister Charlene (second from left) and sis Leinaala (far right). The other two girls are my cousins. They’re dressed in costume for a dance called “Sophisticated Hula.”
Aloha for now.