Ka hua i ka umauma
E o’u hoa kaunu o nei mea he olelo, e hoi hou mai no kaua e pili me ka nakeke ole.
Ok, I will admit it. I am neither clever nor romantic enough to come up with such fabulous turns of phrase. Give me another ten years or so ma ke a’o olelo and maybe I will get there. These are adapted from olelo I found on, yes you guessed it, my favorite place for noii olelo, nupepa.org. Of course I would love it if we also had a spoken corpus for language research, but I digress. I found these, in their original form, while searching for the term “hoa kaunu.” It happened to be my word for today since it’s, drum roll…Valentine’s Day. Dun dun. I know, it’s annoying to be forced into acts of love on a specified day of the year, but it’s ok because really we are all living aloha every day, right? He he
I’m sure I’m not the only one who forgot that V-day is today (right???). I woke up with nothing for my ipo ahi but the same old arms I wrap around him every night and morning. Somewhere between washing the diapers, processing oral histories, and coming up with olelo for our next line of shirts, Valentine’s day fell by the wayside. I was all hilahila, too, when my kane presented me with earrings he had made for me from shells we collected together. Aue no hoi e. So, I thought I would make him a special card with some words of love and a “coupon” redeemable for an evening meal on our favorite nearby puu, including wine in real glasses to be hoofed up the hill by yours truly (can you tell I am trying really hard to make up for being so lame and forgetting?). When I started picking my brain for sexy things ma ka olelo Hawaii, I came up short, as usual. Sure, I have my normal go-to phrases like “ke kii onohi,” “ka lawakua o insert place we are living” (usually either Pukalani or Takapuna), “ka hoa anoi,” etc. But my repertoire is quickly exhausted and I find myself atop Pu’uuluhua once again. Uluhua i ke aha? Uluhua i ka hiki ole ke hoike aku i ke ano maoli o kuu naau me ko’u manao ma ka olelo Hawaii!
I ain’t gonna front, I get frustrated on a regular basis because I want to really express the depth of my thoughts, feelings, desires, etc. ma ka olelo Hawaii and it’s really hard. I have a limited vocabulary and a limited understanding of how our kupuna whispered to each other when they were lying together under the light of the moon on a bed of lauae ferns in the wee hours of the night. Even though my work forces me to develop a better understanding of olelo every day, sometimes I feel like I am walking backwards. Having thousands of pages of digitized newspapers to search at the push of a button is one avenue for dealing with my frustration, but sometimes I just wish I could noho i ke alo o ka poe kahiko (I know, keep dreaming). But I give thanks for ka mea e loaa ana and the fact that my brain even remembered a phrase like “hoa kaunu” when I needed something to write on a card for my hubby.
No laila e ke hoa e kaunu pu nei i keia moolelo pokole, he ui a he mau ninau ka’u ia oe: what are your challenges when it comes to olelo and expressing aloha to your loved one? How do you overcome them? And, most importantly, what is your favorite phrase for your kane or wahine? E hoike mai i ka hua i ka umauma. E kukakuka, e kike olelo kakou!
Oh yeah, and happy Valentine’s Day!!!