Hawaiian Islands

The Hawaiian Islands are so beautiful. As soon as I stepped off the boat my hosts put flower lei around my neck as a symbol of friendship and welcome. A conch shell, called a Pū (pronounced poo) was blown to greet the visitors. Traditionally, Pū were used to announce the beginning of a ceremony or to communicate across water to people in canoes or from a canoe to land. Today they are popular at weddings, lu’au and the opening of the Hawaii State Legislature term. When the Pū is blown, how many times and in which directions all have significance to the ceremony. I learned a few Hawaiian words also. Aloha means many things, and can be used for both hello and goodbye. Mahalo is thank-you (always useful) and Ohana is the word for family. Wahine are women and Kāne are men, while Haole describes a non-native or foreign person. Purrs, Gulliver

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