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Ackerman, Howard (with Harriet Ackerman) - Part 3

Kepā Maly
August 2002

HA: And then they made all the hotels, and they moved out on the trails. But you no can put something on a flat thing ‘cause water going wash ‘em out. But, that’s how always get pilikia, they get pilikia even with the golf course they say people at night. People don’t want to work because they maka‘u work.

KM: Yes, sure.

HA: And because you going have that. You going have that problem right through because you see there’s no more respect. Then when you think about Kam School, the Hawaiians where’s the respect? They teaching ‘em how to speak Hawaiian but you know you got to teach them to have the Hawaiian heart. Teaching them Hawaiian and to speak Hawaiian that doesn’t make them Hawaiian at heart you know. That only teaches them how to talk Hawaiian, and that’s it you know but it’s not from here [pointing to heart], no.

KM: ‘Ae.

HA: That’s how it goes you kow. And I hope the ones now, eventually as they get older their thinking going start changing you know but I hope it’s not too late. Because our ‘āina is just going... [discusses restoration of Kahikolu and Lanakila Churches]

KM: ...Pule mau that’s what you have to do, pule mau.

HA: Yes, that’s what you have to do.

KM: Mahalo so nice to get a chance to meet you.

HA: You, I tell you, I admire you. You’ve been all around, you met so many people what a terrific thing.

HA: Uh-hmm. Do you have another appointment to go to?

KM: I’m going to go and see somebody else later this afternoon. It’s so important you’ve got to make best use of the time. It’s so nice I keep hearing your name...anyway I really appreciate. What I’ll do is basic transcript of the information, I’m going to bring the recording home to you so the recording is just for you folks. And then you know maybe mo‘opuna, someone’s going to be interested too you know. I’ll transcribe out most of it. The whole idea is just so people understand about the land and how we should be working it, living it with one another.

HA: It’s hard you know because you just hope that they’re going to change their way of thinking. You know like the old people said you know “it’s not how much you make it’s how much you give.”

KM: That’s right.

HA: You know like people say, “hoo this old house.” We happy with this old house.

HA: Nobody wants to pay, so just live like this. We happy.

KM: Good old memories.

HA: I said we had good times. I tell them you know, “It’s what makes you happy.”

KM: Yes.

HA: That’s the thing you know. We’ve always been happy here.

KM: Wonderful!

HA: Howard likes to be down here, but he doesn’t go very much ma uka. I think the beach is better for him.

KM: Yes.

HA: Even my mama, when she lived here you know she used to say...when you think back, “it’s rough, it’s mālia, you never get tired looking at the ocean.” And that’s true but when you’re young, you don’t think too much of that until you get older, and then you say “this is golden, this is golden.”

KM: Look at this place, this, the pali.

HA: Yes.

KM: And it’s storied, Ka Pali Kapu o Keōua, Manuahi, Ka‘awaloa...

HA: Yes.

KM: Your ‘āina here, the history that you know.

HA: Like I used to sleep by the ‘ōpae pond [on the side of Hikiau Heiau], and I come home, she say “boy, where did you sleep night time?” “Outside by Masuhara house.” “Oh, that’s all burial ground over there.” But she said, “You lucky you from over here.”

KM: Yes.

HA: You know nothing bothers me you know.

KM: No. They know the heart.

HA: Yes they know. Only like Ka‘awaloa, my aunty, uncle Joe’s wife, “You boys no sleep over there.” Well, one night I sleep the wrong place so they moved me. I came home, we never say nothing. But she put on the light, “I told you damn kids don’t sleep down there.” But you know it’s minor we just slept the wrong place. I always telling people one time we went to the Red Hill.

KM: Pu‘u Ohau?

HA: Yes. And beautiful, we went in on the boat night time, Pō Kāne. We was going down south, for dive way down Kapu‘a. But then once we went in by Opala House. So we went into Opala Hosue, oh the beautiful show. Most times no show, but the whole place just light up, all around.

KM: Wow! Pu‘u Ohau?

HA: Right inside the bay, what’s the name of that bay over there?

KM: [Thinking] Nāwāwā?

HA: Yes, yes, yes right. Eh you boy, you’re sharp!

KM: [chuckles]

HA: Anyway right there and beautiful you know. Right outside on the ocean around the boat. Then I took one guy and the little boy up, catch ‘a‘ama. We had a 100 pound rice bag, jump in the water that night. Oh the lobster and stuff just so much. Nice show that was really nice show you know.

KM: Light all over there?

HA: Lights, just like somebody went all along the cliff. Then later go outside the ocean, outside. Nice show. And I said wow, right on!

KM: Get plenty stuff all out there too you know.

HA: But you know things that’s in the ground even like Kāināliu Beach.

KM: Uh-hmm.

HA: The animals, the one get scared. I went on a horse before when I was young, oh the horse went race. The only time he stopped was by the gate.

KM: For real? One place over there?

HA: Yes, the old house. And when I was telling this boy one time, “You know animal no go through this yard? They go down and come on the other side.” He said, “Oh yeah?” But I said, “That’s before when I used to come long time.” You know but this boy kind of looked about twenty years younger. Then he tell me, “The thing no pau.” I said, “Why? Go look where your dog?” I said, “I don’t know.” He said when he came to that gate he went all the way down the beach, and then when we came out the other side, he went meet us on the other side.

KM: For real!

HA: So he tell me “look like still here.” Then you know he told me one day, he tell me, “This man must have been a mean man” and I went look at him and I told him, “You know, I think you’re right and the animal sense this, they see.” I think they see the animals getting beat up inside this property. And finally they come you see that gate they go down the beach walk down the beach over there they come out the other side...

KM: Yes.

HA: So everything is there, and like the old railroad track you know the one go right through over there.

KM: Yes... Well, good. Mahalo, thank you folks so much, sorry I didn’t mean to take so much of your time.

HaA: No, no, no.

HA: Don’t worry about that... [End of interview]