Although this event happened last year, it is as sharp in my memory as yesterday. This summer for some reason I feel the call of hula kahiko, chanting and the mana of the culture strongly. I was remembering this great event yesterday, and so have decided to repost what I wrote very shortly after having experienced it. THis was my personal experience, as one of the participating chanters, cultural practitioners, kumu hula and hula haumana participating in a vigil at Wailua, on the hill just above Hikina A Ka La Heiau. We participated in a very old and acient revival of an all night vigil, and oli, kahiko, olapa, and pule ritial in which every hour on the hour we repeated an entire ritual exactly the same over and over.
This was a momentous event, where the Wailua river suddenly broke its banks in one of the most dramatic flash floods in Kauais history.
AS we were literally feet from the river, during the night another miracle had occured. An absolutely dry night with thunder and lightening the entire night, right above us and over the kai, in perfect timing to the o9li and the pahu and heke If I hadn't been through it myself I never would have beleived it. Deep into the night we all knew something very special had happened.
But the biggest miracle, was the kind of ua nui we may never see again. Rain so thick we coulnt see each other a hand away, and our mouths filling with water as we kept on chanting. IT was absolutely amazing to the onlookers as several cracks of lightening crackled literally feet from us, and then the river opened up. It made many newspaper headlines as well.
WHy were we doing this? To protect the iwi kupuna from being paved over and disturbed by the bike path. I was just there, last week, still protesting this possibility with the heroine Kaiulani Huff, Nani Rodgers, Liko Martin Jimbo Alalem and others. I am reprintg this so none of us forget what we were doing in those two days.
The Wailua Vigil-My Thoughts (From a Participant)
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