By chance, were you at Ala Moana Center on Christmas Eve 2009? If so, I wonder: Did you see my mother? She would have been bent over a walker, scraping along in her white Velcro-top sneakers a few feet at a time.
When Maria Victoria "Nena" Li Won was told that she had been selected as one of six outstanding Sacred Hearts Academy alumni to be honored at the school's annual scholarship gala, she was truly mystified.
Is there a subtle way to say that you studied classical piano at age 3 and spent your teen years giving solo performances at Westminster Cathedral or St. George's Chapel Windsor Castle (for Queen Elizabeth!) — y'know, without inviting a hellacious two-fisted melvin?
The saying goes that all lost things are in the angels’ keeping. Still, Sandra Laney didn’t hold out much hope of ever seeing her ID and credit cards again after her wallet was stolen June 1 at Koko Marina.
Some things a person just knows. Like when Jo desMarets was in the third grade in Columbus, Ohio, working on a Hawaii statehood project and she just knew that sooner or later she was going to live in Hawaii.
Busy as he is these days, Curtis McClean always makes time to walk the streets around his Iwilei office, ambling along the sidewalks outside the Institute for Human Services next door, where folks gather early to secure a spot in the dinner line, and across Aala Park, where homeless people sleep beneath park benches and addicts and dealers circle nervously about the bathrooms.
He made it. For all of the prayers offered on his behalf, for all of the white-knuckle negotiations with higher powers, for all of the stubborn faith friends and family had invested in him, was there anyone at last week’s Kamehameha Schools graduation ceremony who witnessed senior Keaton Wong take the stage to receive his diploma and didn’t feel a warm swell of amazement?
Oh, to be 18 again. Wait, scratch that. Oh, to be 18 the way soon-to-be St. Andrew's Priory alumna Sarah Tamashiro embodies the age — intelligent, energetic, idealistic, in possession of an abundance of gifts both inherited and developed.
After carefully elaborating on his point that our modern dependence on fossil fuels is essentially a drain on a limited bank of ancient sunlight, and having already deftly woven an improbably logical cloth from theories posited by both mythologist Joseph Campbell and Jedi master Yoda, AND having earlier confessed to making homemade chain-mail jackets in high school, 36-year-old Manoa resident Jon Abbott suddenly feels compelled to let us in on the worst-kept secret of the young evening.
There's the Waialua that we think we know, the one where a rollicking Friday night starts with a round of headlight hide-and-seek and ends with beers on the hood watching the townies spin cluelessly around the Haleiwa-Waialua rotary, the Waialua where ATMs number about as many as traffic lights and both can be counted on one hand.
It was a simple enough errand. All Noelani Sadowski wanted to do was return a video to the neighborhood grocery store. But on the way back, somewhere along that oh-so-familiar quarter-mile stretch leading to her Kaneohe home, everything went black.
Word to the wise: Mom always knows best, even when she's 6,500 miles away. Nui Hicken's mother, Pang Khongpang, certainly knew what she was talking about when she advised her daughter that opening a Thai food restaurant would be a great way to carve a niche in her adopted home of Hawaii.
In his 20-plus years at the Safeway supermarket in Manoa, graveyard shift clerk Jerry Lakins has seen all species of nocturnal shopper, from tittering college freshmen proffering shoddy fake IDs to bleary-eyed cabbies with hanging shirt tails seeking after-work smokes, to slow-stepping loners who roam his well-waxed aisles looking for nothing in particular.
Lehua Kealoha sits back in her beach chair in the far corner of the bathroom, the bun of her hair nestling against the white-tile corner, her arms restless beneath the blue hoodie she's spread over herself like a blanket.
Weddings are crazy. So crazy, in fact, that it's not uncommon for otherwise doggedly observant brides and grooms to later recall not a thing about such trivial concerns as what flowers were in the bridal bouquet, or what the invitations looked like, or what kind of frosting was on that wedding cake.
There were many in those early days of the restoration who arrived on Kahoolawe, surveyed the spent munitions blown across barren fields and felt the injury to the island as an injury to their own spirit.
Each night, Aaron Okubo would watch the news from his hospital bed, his mind churning with crosscurrents of hope and dread. Just 52 at the time, he was weeks, perhaps days, away from bidding final farewell to his wife and two sons. His liver and kidneys had started to fail.
When Maydell Morgan began working as a flight attendant for Hawaiian Airlines, the country was reeling from the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy; Richard Nixon and Eugene McCarthy were embroiled in a pitched battle for the presidency; and Hawaii was in the midst of a dramatic surge in population, commercial development and tourism.
We have it on higher authority that should the University of Hawaii football team play to its potential, take its share of 50-50 games and avoid injury, it has a great shot to play in a bowl game this year.
He was trying to give the kid a break. Three times in a row he'd burned the younger, faster, bouncier defender with a simple drop-step move he'd perfected before the kid was even a kick in the womb. Notice, he said, I always go right with that one. Bum shoulder and all. So, here's what you do.
With every pedal of her two-wheeled war horse, every swallow of decadently smooth, locally grown avocado, every faded T-shirt hung in the warm, Waiohinu breeze, 61-year-old Eva Uran enacts the same simple but urgent message.
Waiakea High School graduate Nolan Kamitaki doesn't like to brag (perfect 2,400 on his SATs), and while his parents are certainly proud of what he's accomplished, they too are more apt to mind their manners than shout from the rooftops.
On a too warm Sunday afternoon at the Kapaa Transfer Station, better known as the Kailua Dump, a father and teenage daughter take turns pitching weathered lumber and moisture-warped drywall from the back of an oversize pickup truck.