Saturday, October 11, 2008

It's all about Aloha

Come along with us as we embark on a new adventure of life in Hawaii. As the stock market falls and the war in Iraq continues, we have made our own place in the world, far from the turmoil and craziness of corporate life on the mainland. It is the culmination of dreams and research, hopes and desires for a life with less stress and an abundance of aloha.

Let me first share with you about the culture of Aloha. I am just beginning to truly understand the many meanings of the word Aloha and at the same time learning to live and walk in the Aloha Spirit.

In the ancient Hawaiian language, Aloha means love, compassion, hospitality, peace and mercy. Since the 19th century and since Americans came to live on the islands it has also become a greeting of hello and good bye.

The word aloha derives from the Proto-Polynesian root *alofa. It has descendents in other Polynesian languages, such as the Māori word aroha, also meaning "love."

A folk etymology claims that it derives from a compound of the Hawaiian words alo meaning "presence", "front", "face", or "share"; and ha, meaning "breath of life" or "essence of life." Although alo does indeed mean "presence" etc., the word for breath is spelled with a macron or kāhako over the (hā) whereas the word aloha does not have a long a.

Before contact with the West, the words used for greeting were welina and anoai. Today, "aloha kakahiaka" is the phrase for "good morning." "Aloha ʻauinalā" means "good afternoon" and "aloha ahiahi" means "good evening." "Aloha kākou" is a common form of "welcome to all."
In modern Hawai’i, numerous businesses have aloha in their names, with more than 3 pages of listings in the Oʻahu phone book alone.

And so we embark in a life filled with aloha. Our new home is just North of Hilo on the big island and is on an acre of oceanfront land. This blog will document our new life and both the challenges and blessings of living on an island and directly on the ocean. We hope in many ways to give back to the island and her people and this blog will also be about that adventure in a very personal way.

We will be learning more about Hawaiian culture, history, agriculture and geography. I plan on taking classes in lei making and local culture. Since photography is a huge part of what I do, I also will be posting many pictures.

We are heading to the big island for the closing on our new house and a few weeks of prep work, then we return to the bay area to pack up and by January we will officially be Hawaiians. We are both counting down to the day when we and our pets start our new life in Hawaii.

Aloha au i Hawai`i,
Devany Vickery-Davidson
East Bay Potters


MikeR said...

Hi Dev! It is always good to hear about what you are up to. Sometimes I live through your adventures! Your new house looks great. We just got back from Kaui and we spent Christmas on Oahu.
My dream is to sail to Hawaii on a trimaran and hop from Island to Island. Too bad that is not Sue's dream.

Devany said...

Thanks for visiting Mike! Come on over!

Ginger said...

Wow Dev you sure have come a long way from your Days in Pomona. I always knew you had more talent in your little finger than I have in my entire body. Your art work is beautiful!!! Hopefully my dream of going to Hawaii will come true. You just never know