Sunday, March 25, 2018

Hale Pili

The construction of the Hale Pili began last week.

In Hawaiian, "hale" means house and "pili" is a type of grass. The hale pili is a traditional grass house that was the standard building typology in the Hawaiian Islands. The hale pili has been a project in the process of planning or permitting for more than three years. But my experience is that the project has gone very fast.

In one week, we had a traditional blessing ceremony, started excavation, visited another hale under construction, secured traditional wood, completed archaeology, completed the framing, and poured concrete.

The hale will be built over the summer as a community-oriented project trying to engage people in the process of traditional construction techniques.

The major component will language instruction. At the IVDM we called this "situational fluency" and it was a way of teaching traditional language through traditional arts. The hale will also become a new space for programming, hopefully, traditional craft programming and language instruction.

This is a small project that should result in a big summer!

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Baby you're a firework

Last night, I was invited to a dinner party on the 32nd floor of the Pinnacle. That is probably unimportant. Though, unbeknownst to me, it was also the night of the 24th annual Honolulu Festival that ended with a very large display of fireworks. It was very cool.

Tonight, I updated my new Instagram account and reviewed the posts from this last year. I also did our taxes yesterday.

When I look at Instagram, I am amazed at both how fast 2017 went and what the year entailed. Deneen and I were traveling nearly once a month throughout the entire year. Martin and Kelsy hiked the Pacific Crest Trail. Lucas and I built two large inhabitable art projects. Davis spent three months in Yellowstone National Park.

When I review it, the year looks nuts.

On December 11, 2016, I returned from Dutch Harbor, Alaska. We were in Columbus in March. Martin and Kelsy came to the Imperial Valley for Coachellain April, then the next week we put them on the Pacific Crest Trail. Deneen and I flew to Chicago in May for Lucas's graduation. I was in St. Louis the following week for AASLH. And that week we put Davis on a train to Yellowstone. At the end of June Lucas and I went to Budapest. Then at the end of July we were in Columbus, again, where both Deneen and I celebrated our birthdays. The last weekend of August I interviewed at the historic site of Woodstock - Jared drove 11 hours to meet me and we saw Sting (a highlight of the year). In September we accepted th eLagacy Award at Judson, in Chicago, and then I went to Austin for the AAM conference. In October, back to Columbus again. In November, Deneen and I interviewed in Hawaii - the weekend after Thanksgiving. Lucas left for Japan. Martina  and Kelsey came for Christmas. And then I moved to Hawaii!

The year has been nuts!

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Starting from Scratch. Part 4

On September 9, 2007, this blog began with a post called "Starting from Scratch." That post was repeated on October 1, 2011, when we moved to El Centro, and again on September 20, 2016, my 30th day in Alaska.

This is the fourth move in last ten+ years to a remote location where I came with nothing but a suitcase. This is actually my favorite part. The idea of rebuilding your life from scratch is intoxicating to me. It allows you to separate your needs from your wants - but more than that - it allows you to really appreciate your "wants" when you get them.

The last 30 days have not have been comfortable. I did not really like where I lived. But it allowed me to look for an apartment. When I moved to Alaska it was really different - there was one apartment available. It was too expensive and unfurnished. And no fun.

Yesterday, I signed the lease on a the place we are renting in Hawaii. It is too expensive and unfurnished. But unbelievably FUN! It is so close to the beach that State Farm would not give me renters insurance; across the street from a brand new grocery store that has a wine bar in the center; a block from the "Ward" district; has a heated pool, hot tub, weight room, and a wood shop; and the lanai looks down the crescent shaped sandy beaches of Waikiki.

Also, it has two bedrooms. Not at all what we were expecting to get. More than we need. But exactly what I wanted.

Friday, March 2, 2018

First 30 Days

Today brought an end to my first 30 days in Hawaii.

As the last four transitions to remote places go, Hawaii has been pretty easy. I have been living in a pretty gritty, small AirBnB about a mile from the museum. Without a car, I have been walking, so nearly everything in this 30 days has occurred in a 1.5 mile radius of the museum. The walk to the AirBnB is not unpleasant, but it is in a residential area with absolutely nothing to do except sit in my small room.

30 day highlights: I have seen four bands; got my Club membership; submitted my first grant (historic paint analysis); and successfully got through the first of the planned bicentennial programs the museum will be doing over the next three-years.

30 day disappointments: at the beginning of week three - my first day after onboarding - four staff people were out sick. That Friday night I started having a sore throat and spent the next 48 hours in bed with a fever and chest cold. For the next week I was on meds operating at about 60%. Blah!

I was not sick a single day of the seven years I spent it in the desert!