ophe's promise

something akin to a sketch pad

moon phases
Location: Hawaii, United States

one of my favorite quotes: Be Humble for you are made of earth; Be Noble for you are made of stars.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Speaking to Strangers

Yesterday's afternoon walk took us down a gravel single-lane road towards Kealakekua Bay (the infamous location of Captain Cook's demise). While Hawaii has been carved up into private parcels, public access to the shoreline is protected by law. Many of the public access paths are marked and many are discreetly "hidden". The road taken yesterday is one of those "discreet" ones. The entrance is a padlocked gate (access is by a small opening next to the gate) and there are no signs posted. This particular path is known to locals; the rule being that one behaves as a guest when passing through. As long as one respects the boundaries of private property, you are free to swim, surf, fish, sunbathe, scavange for sea shells and coral, whatever, once at the shore. (Overnight camping is frowned upon, though.) The walk is an easy one, probably less than a mile over even terrain. Once at the shore, there are some wonderful views of the bay (yesterday we sighted a whale). You can continue walking along the rocky beach, up to and around the southern point of the bay, where many tidal pools brimming with life are to be found. On occasion, there may be a few surfers in the bay. It's always fun to admire their grace and skill with the surf. The sunset can be a beautiful spectacle, too. An added plus, as the gravel road is not widely known, visitors to this particular area of the shoreline are few. It's rare to encounter anyone along the path; occasionally one of the residents of the few homes nearby may drive by.

Yesterday, a pickup truck slowly approached and stopped when it reached us. The driver, unknown to us, a middle-aged local man with a longish white beard, leaned out the truck window, smiled and asked, "Where are you guys from?" "Oh, we live in Kona." "Oh, then, you're here getting your exercise?" "Yes, this is one of our favorite places to walk and visit. Is that okay?" "Oh yes", he replied, "I love you". (yes, that's just what he said)

He was about to drive off and I thought to ask him, "Where do you come from? Do you live here?" His quiet response, "I come from my mother...."
I gave him a little playful pat on the arm and a smile. "What a coincidence, I come from my mother, too. What is your name?", I asked.

"I am Gentle", his reply, "......Ben, that is". I introduced us by our names and he then continued on his way....... Just one of those sweet encounters that seem to happen often here..... a good example of the nature of these people I love. Needless to say, that brief encounter with that "stranger" lifted my spirits for the rest of the day.

Oh, and by the way, Gentle, I think I forgot to say, "I love you, too!"

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