Story by Kathy Collins | Illustration by Matt Foster
Listen to this column read aloud in pidgin:
April showahs bring May flowahs.” Da guy who wen’ write dat nevah come from Maui. Ovah here. da ua (rain) bring da pua (flowahs), no mattah what da caldendah say.
Dass one a my fav’rite t’ings about Maui . . . da rain. Well, da flowahs too, but gotta get da rain fo’ get da flowahs. Speshly at my house, ’cause I too lazy—I mean, too busy—fo’ watah da yard
I nevah did unnastand dat old nursery rhyme “Rain, rain, go away.” If you wen’ grow up here, you know dat rain is blessings. An’ one a da mos’ blessed places on Maui is Ha‘iku. Ovah there, even when da sun stay shining, da air smell like rain, all clean an’ fresh.
Small-kid time, me and my parents wen’ go live wit’ my tutu in Ha‘iku fo’ liddo while. Every day, from morning to dinnahtime, I would go play outside. An’ every day, would rain. Mos’ times was jus’ passing showahs, small kine drizzoh, an’ da sun would still yet be shining. I would be all hot an’ sticky from runnin’ around an’ climbin’ trees, so da cool rain felt good on top my skin. Odda times, when da drops was mo’ big an’ da sun go hide behind da fat gray clouds, I would go wait unda-neat’ da big macadamia nut tree in da backyard until da rain stop. When da rain pau, dass da bes’ time fo’ go pull eart’worms out from da flowahbeds. My tutu had one cow an’ one pig but we nevah have dogs or cats, so da eart’worms was da bes’ I had fo’ pets.
Been long time since I wen’ play in da Ha‘iku rain. Almos’ one year, in fack. I was one a da performahs at last year’s Ha‘iku Ho‘olaule‘a an’ Flowah Festavoh, an’ aftah my talk-story set, one a dose passing showahs wen come bless us. I felt like one small kid again, dancing in da rain. Excep’ dis time, da music no was in my head, had one live band an’ plenny oddah guys dancin’ wit’ me.
Da Ha‘iku Ho‘olaule‘a an’ Flowah Festavoh is one good-fun, good-cause event dat raise money fo’ stuffs at Ha‘iku Elementary School, like educational programs, playground equipment, classroom supplies, all kine good stuffs. Da Ha‘iku Boys an’ Girls Club an’ da Ha‘iku Community Association benafit too. Da mission of da Ho‘olaule‘a is fo’ celebrate da past an’ present of da Ha‘iku community while building fo’ da future.
Besides uku million flowahs an’ plants fo’ sale, da Ho‘olaule‘a get plenny Maui-made crafts an’ clothes an’ stuffs, plus onolicious food an’ live music all day. Get one keiki play zone fo’ da kids an’ one humongous silent auction fo’ da grownups, plus da famous Ha‘iku School Bake Sale & Sweet Shoppe — but you gotta go early ‘cause da bugga always sell out. My fav’rite part is da historical display with da olden days pictures an’ talkin’ story with da local kupuna. An’ da Ha‘iku rain. Every year get rain. But no worry, only small kine.
Dis year is da twennyith anna-vers’ry of da Ho‘olaule‘a, so dis one goin’ be extra special, wit’ one lu‘au fo’ da old-timahs on Sunday, April 21. Da main event is all day Saturday, April 20, at da Ha‘iku Community Centah. I hope I see you ovah there. Bring one umbrella or be like me, wear rubbah slippahs an’ lightweight clothes dat dry out fas’. Den we can go dance in da ua while we celebrate da pua an’ all da odda blessings of Ha‘iku.
Tita is the pidgin-speaking alter ego of local actress and Mana‘o Radio cofounder/DJ Kathy Collins. Both Tita and Ms. Collins grew up on Maui.