Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Hair Obsession

This past Saturday, I asked my cousin to trim my hair. Okay her idea of "trim" was to take my curly locks that used to reach my waist and reduce it to shoulder length. I am still in shock!

Husband walked in on the cut as soon as she was done and you could see the disappointment all over his face. I was irritated by the drastic change in length but had to laugh at the scowl on husbands face. He was perturbed (is that a word?) at the shortness of my locks. If I take a flat iron to my head, it might reach my bra line. Other than that, these curls are grazing my shoulder.

What is it about hair that makes a man desire it on a woman?

Culturally, I was raised to grow my hair. You could ONLY cut it on special occasions and usually the hair was given to make a headpiece, similar to the one in the picture. My mothers mother maintained long hair until the day she died. Her mother, my great grandmother maintained her locks well into her 80's. I suppose my husband was expecting the same of me. Most times, I agree because I like the idea that I am perpetuating my culture. I want to pass that heritage onto my children, especially my daughters.

However, I'm still curious -- what is it about my hair that makes my husband want me to maintain its length?

**Photo, courtesy of Polynesia.com

Monday, July 21, 2008

Naptime Dreams

It was a pleasant afternoon. I was spiritually fed from a great service at church, I had just eaten a nice brunch of french toast and a mushroom omelette. I was content to spend the rest of the afternoon finishing off the novel, The Known World by Edward P. Jones. I cozied into a nice position on my bed, opened my book and drifted off to sleep. I didn't even get a paragraph in before the lull of the dream world beckoned me.

I find that my dreams give me great insight into the state of my mind. It is my spirit revealing to my conscious mind some of the stumbling blocks that may come if I don't fix whats not working in my conscious world.

When I was going through a separation from my first husband. The same recurring dream would haunt me for many months. I would dream that I was in my home. My home would be on fire and everyone around me would be running to escape the flames. They scream at the top of their lungs for me to get out of the fire yet I steadily walk through my home and the flames don't affect me. And I am clueless as to why they're acting so frantically. I remember vividly everyone's concern for me in the dream. The dream rocked me to my core and I would wake from it with my heart racing, wet sheets from sweat, and reduced to heart breaking tears.

There are no coincidences! Afer experiencing the dream for so many weeks, I was desperate for answers. As I drove to work one morning, on the radio was the "Dream Guy". He interpreted dreams. I called in and was patched right through to him. Everyone knows how hard it is to get through to a radio station. This, however, was a breeze. I recounted the dream to him and my dumbfounded stupor over its significance and meaning. He revealed to me, in detail, the state of my emotional well-being without knowing a thing about me or my separation from my husband.

The house is symbolic of self. My emotions, my soul, ME. The fire was indicative of doom, of failure, of danger. Thus, the burning house was me headed for a melt down. The people running from the building was my family who were very frightened by the fire, as most people are who find themselves in a burning building. Their screaming and yelling from outside the burning building was their concern for me. My apathy to the fiery home was my naivete, my total disregard for my own emotional well-being at the expense of me.

The "dream guy" said, "You are so used to being emotionally hurt that you are totally oblivious to what's really happening to you."

I was totally rocked by that comment. As he continued to reveal to me the pitfalls of my current emotional state, I was reduced to tears as I had begun to see myself as very weak and vulnerable. I had dedicated so much of who I was to the failing relationship that was my first marriage at the expense of me. I put him and only him above my own needs. I knew it needed to stop and yet I allowed another two years to pass between my ex and I before I emotionally let go of the relationship. I let him back into my world only for him to trample all over my heart again.

My dreams are a great compass for me to direct my conscious self. Sometimes I feel an emotion in my dream and I recognize it in the conscious world and I act accordingly, as I had done in the dream. It works! I am often beckoned into the world of dreams as I was today. And usually, therein is a message.


Sunday, July 20, 2008

Narrative of Saturday, July 19th

My first narrated photo blog. I rarely use this many photo's in one blog post. I never thought to as I think that my writing is vivid enough. Anyway, I hope you enjoy my narrative of my day, Saturday, July 19th.

What an interesting day! I had breakfast at my folks house because my father mixed up a batch of pancakes. Yumm!! The better part of the afternoon I spent cleaning fish. I think we cleaned about 10 small mahi mahi in preparation for our family reunion. A small mahi mahi is about 3 feet long and weighs about 12-15 pounds. I wish I got pictures of the full size fish but I didn't think of it until my hands were all bloody. Pictured here is the "aftermath" of having filet'd the rest of the fish. The entrails of the fish, in the old days would have been mashed up with garlic, onion and hawaiian salt for consumption later. (We threw them out.) FYI: There were three very pregnant fishes. We harvested the eggs and fried it up immediately. DELICIOUS! There were two fishes that had sardines in its digestion tract. That was pretty amazing to see.

The heads were ziplocked and sent to the freezer to make fish soup at a later date. My mother LOVES fish soup. She would have been upset if we had tossed the heads. She loves the eyeballs of the fish. I, personally, have never tasted it but those who eat it swear by its deliciousness. I was thrilled to be able to get my hands dirty in something so natural. I was doing something that "ocean people" around the world are raised to do -- clean and eat fish. Contemporary society has been spoiled by never having to produce, with their own hands, food. We go to the super market to get a cut of meat, not having any real connection to how the food arrived in the grocery store. So today was great to actually use a skill -- cleaning fish -- that is probably not something people do everyday.

After my adventure with the fishes, I went home and got washed up. My hands and clothes reeked of fish and I was desperate for a shower. Even after all that scrubbing in the shower, my hands still had a mild stench. I had to get under the nails and clean out whatever was left under that. I got ready to go to a party. Husband and I had been invited to a graduation party. The guy that we attribute to having "introduced" us way back in 2003, his step-daughter had graduated from high school and they threw a party for her. See "the guy" in the pic with husband and I... he's the one in red. He's always been good to us, separately, even before husband and I knew each other. He's the mutual friend that husband and I tell people about when we tell the story of how we met. Cool people!!

The food was outstanding. I don't know if you can tell what's on this plate but it is an indication of just how diverse the food culture is in Hawai'i. Top left - collard greens - representing southern American cuisine. It was sooooo good too! Top center - crab wonton... cream cheese and crab wrapped and deep fried. Top right - beef broccoli... both dishes I attribute to Chinese American cuisine. Bottom left - macaroni salad... What is that? Italian or American? Next to that is the Chinese chow mein. Then the gandule rice representing Puerto Rico. Finally an itty-bitty piece of chicken. There was so much more food that I didn't pick up and most of the food I piled on my plate was void of any real meat. Good on me!

That was our evening. When we left the party, the band was just arriving. We said our goodbyes, got a couple more pics in and was off to home sweet home. Congratulations Alexis... pictured here with me and Paytron... "the guy" that introduced husband and I. **giggles** It was such a great evening and so different from the norm! I thoroughly enjoyed myself and wish I had more opportunities to run in my "old circles". I don't know if that's necessarily the right thing to do considering I've changed my lifestyle. I've cut out the smoking and drinking and eliminated the lasciviousness expectations of modern society. And I'm so peaceful with it. It brings me happiness and such clarity. There isn't any confusion for me as I have set the standard for myself and expect only the best. Having done that, I maintain a very healthy and successful relationship with my husband. We lead a very balanced life and the trust and communication is ALWAYS there. My life is so blessed!

Friday, July 18, 2008

The Witch Doctor In Me

I grew up the granddaughter of a "witch doctor".

My grandmother has passed but the legend of her "magic" lives on. I still run into folks that have been impacted by her ability to heal. People sought after her for physical ailments or physical manifestations of spiritual problems. She'd address each of them in nearly the same manner. Often, she knew their condition before they even approached her. (There's nothing eerie or spooky about that. Not to me, at least.) That was part of the process of her being able to help them.

Days before a person would come for help, my grandmother would start feeling pains. These pains indicated what the person was coming for. For my grandmother, it was a glimpse into their world. She knew where the pain was and how intense and whether it was a muscle, bones or a certain organ, etc. This allowed her to craft the EXACT healing process.

The healing regiment could be a combination of several different activities. It could be to avoid certain food. She was VERy specific, in terms of what types of food to avoid and it was dependant on your condition. Sometimes she would do a full body massage. She had several herbal concoctions. She would dispense the appropriate one. The herbal concoctions were not the tastiest. Actually, it did have a taste and that taste was HORRIBLE.

But the benefits.... they continue today as both my parents learned to make the "medicine" when my grandmother was alive and now pass that information to me. With such a daunting task of perpetuating this holistic approach I wonder if the Witch Doctor In Me is ready. The responsibility of KNOWING and not DOING will be my heaviest burden. But I look forward with a hopeful heart that I might be an appropriate tool in the service of people in need.

We all struggle with the desire to make an impact on humanity. This path that I choose, to nurture the Witch Doctor In Me, is just one facet of an ever-evolving ME. My gift to self and my gift to the world is to store the knowledge and share it with others.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Welcome, Welcome

Apparently my husband wants to start blogging and wants access to my favorite blogs. This would, in turn, direct him to my blog since I usually comment on all my favorite blogs.

I've never shared my blog with him because I just didn't think he was interested. At first, I was frightened at the idea that he would be reading my thoughts since a good portion of my posts are about him or about US.

I remember when he and I first started seeing each other, I wrote a "man-hating" post on my Black Planet page. He happened upon it and we got into one of the biggest altercations in the history of our relationship. Perhaps this is the reason I have probably NEVER shared my blog with him. If I'm being really honest with myself, I'm afraid of his reaction to some of my more racier commentary about past relationships. Is it appropriate for a married woman to "go on" in that manner?

At any rate, my husband knows me well enough to know that I would NEVER betray him for any reason. He should know that I'm his best friend and the woman that "got his back" through any storm and any trial that may come. He is an irreplaceable gift that the creator bestowed upon me. A gift that I will never misuse or disrespect.

So I welcome my baby to my blog world.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Family Reunion

We leave for a family reunion in a week. It is a reunion of my mothers siblings. She has 9 of them that are still alive. I planned the whole sha-bang from here in Hawai'i. Isn't that funny? I don't know how I did it but I did... thanks to the help of one of my dearest cousins. She and I work really well together. The funny thing is that I picked on her like crazy when we were little. Now... she's one of the very few women that KNOW me, inside out. LOL..

I'm pretty excited. Here's the rundown of events:

Friday, July 25th
630pm DINNER -- I have a few activities lined up.... more like Ice Breakers. That should get us to 730 when we have our talent show. I can't wait to see what's going to be done! I have prizes for the following categories:
Funniest Skit
Best Costumes
Most Participants from a family
Most UNIQUE Talent
Straight from the BUSH -- talent judged on authenticity to village life
By 830, we should be ready to dance the night away.

Saturday, July 26th
We have a Barbecue/Sports Day. We've organized some games for anyone who is brave enough to play. I'll also have dominoes and cards and a few other board games for the old heads.

Sunday, July 27th
CHURCH!! Immediately after -- family picture.
I'm trying to squeeze in brunch sometime that day but I'm not sure if the funds will stretch that far. We'll see.

Monday, July 28th
Devotional @ my Grandmother's grave followed by a final day of fun at the local rec center.

Sounds like fun to me and I'm really excited. We have t-shirts also. Wish me luck that everything will run accordingly!!! Woooohoooo!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Aging Parents

My parents are aging.

I went over to my folks home this evening to drop off dinner. My mother was feeling under the weather and my father, God bless him, works so dang hard throughout the week that I knew he wasn't up to cooking dinner. Homemade chicken soup was on the menu, topped off with dumplings. Chicken soup is always good for the soul, for health and strength. Its one of those comfort foods that everyone in my family loves.

Husband was also feeling under the weather and he was the original intended recepient for that chicken soup. Even with the thermostat reaching the high 80's, husband still wanted my famed chicken soup. So I kindly obliged.

As I ladled bowls of soup for my parents, several thoughts ran through my mind. Just a few, short years ago, my parents cared for me in the same manner I found myself doing for them this evening. As a woman that was raised with my mothers strong Samoan cultural values, where the elders of the family are revered as living treasures, I realize now that my role has switched and it is now my turn to care for my parents.

I watched my mother care for her mother and her grandmother. This is what I know. This is what I do! This is one of the roles I was born to fill and I'm okay with it. I look forward to serving my parents and returning to them all the love they've graced me with throughout my life. It is my duty. It is my privilege!

What I am most grateful for is that my husband is along for the ride. He supports the direction I want to go in, the direction WE'RE going in. Our discussions and our compromises allow us to fulfill the priorities on our individual lists. We are a match made in heaven!

**Logo appears courtesy of Bridging Generations

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Island Fever

I've been suffering from ISLAND FEVER. If you've never lived on an island, in the middle of the great Pacific ocean, then you probably wouldn't know what I'm talking about and it would do you good to continue reading.

I live on the island of O'ahu. If you notice on this illustration (courtesy of acmecompany), I am in the center of that EXTREMELY large expanse of water. If I feel like taking a drive, I can only go in circles and chances are there are 100,000 others with the same idea... so driving=stuck in traffic. The closest land mass is 2500 miles, that being the western coast of the continental United States. **sigh**

There is a constant battle in my belly. On the one hand, Hawaii is my home and where I would love to raise children. On the other, I have seen enough of the world to know that I want to see more!

Hawaii is home to me. I am part-Hawaiian... part of my ancestry leads to the indigenous people of these islands. I love the "locals" and the food and the weather and the beautiful beaches, etc, etc. There's so much to love! I feel very comfortable here, safe, and secure. All my immediate family are still here on this island. Why would I want to leave?

There's a great big world out there to explore. I have desires to do an Aboriginal Walkabout and get in touch with my Dreaming. I would love to ride an elephant in Thailand. Visit India and sit in the courtyards of the Taj Mahal. I see myself running with lions on the African continent. I can find my own green stone in New Zealand. Visit the land of my Samoan ancestors.

I am an explorer, yearning to explore. Living to quench my thirst for adventure. I'm suffering today from ISLAND FEVER, a severe case of wanting to FLY!

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Down To Earth

Yesterday I had a taste for vegetarian food. So husband and I planned lunch at a health food store called Down To Earth. My husband is a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy so I was surprised that he was so supportive of my desire to have a vegetarian meal.

We headed south along the beautiful Kamehameha Highway. It was such a gorgeous day. Blue skies, hot, humid and a wonderful day to travel in my air conditioned car. The deli we were headed to takes about an hour to get to.

Down to Earth is replete with scrumptious entree's, side's, soup, salad, fresh fruit and all things considered healthy. I opted for the vegan potatoes au gratin, curry rice, roasted vegetables and korean tofu. I have to say that it was absolutely YUMMY and it was meatless.

So if you ever get a chance, and you're in the vicinity, head to Down To Earth for health conscious fare.

I Need a Girlfriend!

Now that I have your attention...

I do need a girlfriend. No! Not like a les.bian girlfriend. I am a very proud heterosexual woman. LOL... why does that sound weird? When homosexuals are gay and proud there's a different ring. Anyway...

I need a girlfriend.

I need a best girlfriend that I get to run off with to go shopping ALL DAY LONG. Walk through Macy's, Ross, Pier 1 or WHATEVER store and not feel intimidated to hurry as I do with husband.

I need a best girlfriend that listens to me vent and complain about my husband, bashes him with me, then sends me back to him because we both know he's a REALLY great guy.

I need a best girlfriend that knows my past and doesn't judge me for it, accepts that I've changed my lifestyle and still wants to hang out.

I need a best girlfriend that has seen my heart break, held me up through my darkest days, and still stood close by as I went through it.

I need a best girlfriend to sit and watch sappy chick flicks like Beaches with. We'll cry through the entire movie then pig out on a lilikoi chiffon cake and a pint of haagen daaz.

I need a best girlfriend to play dress up with. We'll fix our hair in different ways until it's just right, try on several different outfits, put on make-up that we'd normally NOT do, take pictures then post them on BlackPlanet. LOL... then wait for the notes to roll in.

I need a best girlfriend to have Ladies Night with. To get dressed up, feel magnificently sexy, and hit the club.

I need a best girlfriend who can understand my relationship with my mother and helps me through the turmoil that often comes.

I need a best girlfriend to cry with when life gets hard. She doesn't cringe at my tears but sits with me and hands me kleenex. I don't have to feel so tough all the time -- I can be me, weak and flawed!

Yeah -- I have family all around me and feel utterly alone without my best girlfriend. We don't talk much anymore. We're in entirely different time zones. We rarely have time to talk or even drop an email. I know her life has moved on and I'm but a distant part of her past. Hands down, she still knows me best and I miss her entirely!

**Photo of me and my best girlfriend... NEENA & BOOBOO... friends FOREVER!

Friday, July 04, 2008

Movie Review: Han.cock

Watched Hancock with husband and my brother and his wife. I found the movie HIGHLY unpredictable. It was really nice to be in a movie where I was still up in the air about "what-comes-next". Prior to this movie, I watched the latest Indiana Jones movie and that flopped horribly, even though I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the rest of the Indiana Jones series.

So anyway -- what I noticed first was the excessive bad language that is soooo not Wil Smith. I was quite surprised at the number of a-holes and b's were in the movie. Serious! It didn't look pretty on the Fresh Prince. I wish he skipped on the bad language. What is the reason for the language? What does a director or writer gain from adding the 'grown-up' words? First recommendation -- skip on taking the kids to this PG-13 movie until you can screen it and see if it's appropriate for your child.

Wil Smith is a superhero that suffers from amnesia. His performance was quite interesting. It was not one of my favorites but I'm still a big fan of the Fresh Prince. I wasn't feeling the scraggly look but I understand, as an actor, you have to change it up and try different roles or fall into typecast hell like Sanaa Lathan or Michael Beach.

I enjoyed Jason Bateman's performance. Remember him from the 80's sitcom classic, Silver Spoons? He plays a quirky, good-guy publicist in Hancock waiting for his big break! He helps Hancock clean up his act.

Charlize Theron -- her skin looked HORRIBLE in this movie. Uggghhhh!! I was not impressed. Her performance -- average.

If I had to review this movie in a sentence...
Fallen gods find each other in a giant world.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Vivid Yet Distant

I am a woman with raging hormones, as the creator intended.

My body longs to be touched, molested, ravaged and pursued by a man whose only desire is to satisfy the passion in his loins.

My sexual adventurousness began with my ex-husband and he is probably the measure by which all others have been compared. He and I had escapades that only he and I will ever know about. We liked the adventure of public places and the idea that we wanted it "so bad" that it had to be now or never. **sigh** I miss that excitement; that rush of adrenalin and pure ecstacy. Someone else enjoys that now as he has remarried and so have I. It's been five years and a couple months since I had a sexual experience with that man, however, I think about him on occasion. Mostly when my hormones have got the best of me.

I feel no guilt for thinking about him and his EXTREME skill in taking me to the heights of heaven. He took my body to places it probably will never experience again. Bittersweet for me. Bitter because the way our relationship ended... Sweet because of the memories it has imprinted upon my memory and consequently, my body.

I am constrained from giving in to my every whim. Most times, I am content to fantasize and reminisce on what "was" and am satisfied knowing that I had experienced him at all. We had such a special connection, one that I will probably always hang on to. More than likely, on my death bed, I will recall his face, his scent and his brilliant mind. He will probably greet me at death's door to assist me in my birth into the next world.

I've said goodbye to his memory a million times and vowed total commitment to the man that shares my world now. But I find myself here, at this apex, with such vivid yet distant memories of my first love.