Update

Aloha all,

Well compared to last week, this week was relatively relaxed and slow paced.

Earth Day was on April 22, 2010.  There were many community events going on around the island but I recalled a familiar saying that somehow hit home that day.  “Think Globally and Act Locally.”  And I figured how much more close to home could I act if I began with my very own keiki.

So in honor of Earth Day, Hailee and I planted some Manoa Lettuce and green beans.  We also fed our home composter which by the way, is available free of charge from the County.  From what I understand, they are currently out but are taking names for the next batch.  Just call 241-4837 to get your name on the list.  Once the bins come in you will be required to take a short one-hour class to learn how to use it and you are ready to go.  Just a little advice, you need patience.  You are not going to be getting that sweet smelling black compost overnight.  We dug for earthworms and placed it in our bin hoping that it would speed up the composting process.  We spent an afternoon in the dirt growing our own food and having a blast.  I forgot how fun it is to get dirty and be a kid again.  My main message to Hailee was that everyday should be Earth Day.

Growing up, I can remember riding our bikes to Kipu Falls and spending endless summer days at Kalapaki.  Clean water, fresh air, and beautiful sunshine, it is something we often overlook because growing up on Kauai we are surrounded by it.  But we must always remember that our responsibility is to preserve what we have for the next generation.

I was awoken Saturday morning by my daughter.  She had managed to jump in bed with us sometime late Friday night or in the wee hours of Saturday morning.  It was a great way to wake up.  However, I knew that the day ahead would be filled with mixed emotions.  I was slated to present a certificate to the ohana of the late great Larry McIntosh or “Mr. Mac” as we knew him.  It was the hardest speech to deliver by far.  So many of us have fond memories of Mr. Mac.  For many of us, his classroom is where we learned the value of hard work.  He taught us that the difference between the next best person and yourself was measured by who worked harder.  Who shows up early and leaves late.  The following is the speech that I wrote and delivered including the certificate from the Kaua`i County Council that I sponsored:

It is a privilege and an honor to stand before you today and say that not only am I a student of Mr. Mac but I am a proud member of one of the most exclusive clubs in the world, the Mighty Red Raiders of Kauai High School.  Do we have any Red Raiders out there?  Let him hear you.  Let him know we are here!

And I say that I am proud to be a student in the present tense.  Not a former student but as a student, because I am still learning from this man.  I still hear his voice pushing us.  I still hear him driving that competitive wedge between the next best person and myself and boy did he have a talent in that sense.  He had a way of creating intensity, of creating rivalries, of creating a fierce competitiveness between the first and second chairs of a section and if any of you were ever in his band class you know exactly what I am talking about.

And I remember Mr. Mac always had a soft spot for the kolohe ones.  You see, I was lucky enough to accompany Mr. Mac and some of his students across Europe one summer in 2001 before 911.  And on this trip I got to know the man, not the teacher, but I got introduced to the essence of Mr. Mac.  He was a man who, well lets put it this way.  He could relate to the kolohe ones and I know because I was one of them.  He could relate to them because….well…he was a little bit kolohe himself.

But beyond all of that, beyond the booming raspiness of his voice lies a man.  A man who created a legacy.  A man who made band class…cool!  Just as cool as being on the football team. He made band class so much more than just another class.  It was much more than just another 45 minutes.  For many of us myself included.  It was a sanctuary, it was a safe haven, it was a refuge.  It was a place where you were judged on work ethic and effort rather than what you were wearing or who you were hanging out with.  And in the confusing world of High School.  For 45 minutes.  It all made sense.  I have a certificate of condolences that I would like to present to the family of the late, great Mr. Mac.

CONDOLENCE CERTIFICATE

The Council

of the

County of Kaua‘i

hereby offers its condolences to

THE FAMILY OF THE LATE

LARRY L. McINTOSH

The Kaua‘i County Council offers its deepest condolences to the family of Larry L. McIntosh.  “Mr. Mac” as he was called by all of his students was   an educator and band director for over 40 years.  For everyone who had the honor and privilege of knowing Mr. Mac, knew that music was his total life and that he was a very dedicated band director.  Students recall that he was not only a music teacher, he was a confidant, mentor and a huge influence in the lives of his students as he brought out the best in their abilities as musicians.   Mr. Mac, was the recipient of many accomplishments and awards, including being named Kaua‘i Museum Living Treasure in 2007 for artistry in music.

Many will remember Mr. Mac as an inspiration, a tireless practitioner of musical and theatrical arts, an avid water skier and for “making magic” with his music.  Mr. Mac served as a true role model for everyone as he was always available to help and share his knowledge with all, especially the youth of our island.  Band class was so much more than a classroom with walls.  For many, it was a sanctuary, a safe haven, a refuge.

Mr. Mac will be sadly missed by all and we extend our heartfelt sympathy to his beloved wife Lauretta; daughters Traci, Leana, and Sydney; son Larry Wayne, his three grandchildren and his many family and friends.

Councilmember: Derek S. K. Kawakami

Date: April  24, 2010

10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

at the War Memorial Convention Hall

Mr. Mac until we meet again on the other side, keep a chair open for me in the woodwinds section.  We love you, we miss you, and we will carry you in our hearts forever.  A hui hou.  Thank you and god bless

Saturday afternoon had my ohana making the trek back West for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Hanapepe.  It was great to see the many survivors and their brave families that have had to battle this disease.  Hats off to Val Saiki who chaired a very successful event.  I got to spend some time with the Key Club and Kiwanis Club of Kauai who made sure that they had enough of Mr. Lane Tokita’s famous chili to feed an army.  Just for the record, Tokita’s chili is some of the best that I have ever tasted!  HGEA also had a tent and they were selling Two Ladies Kitchen famous strawberry mochi all the way from Hilo.  It was nice to see the community come out to support our brave survivors and to remember all of those who have fallen ill to cancer.  Made me think back of my grandfather “Kash” Kashima and my wife’s grandmother who both passed away from cancer.

Heading back east we noticed that Kalaheo Coffee Co. and Café was still open.  Deciding that we needed some coffee for the long ride home we decided to stop in.  We stopped for coffee and ended up having a delicious dinner.  If you are ever in Kalaheo stop by and try the turkey meatloaf or the Eggplant parmesan.  It is out of this world!  Oh, by the way, did I mention that they have great coffee too?

Sunday was a day of relaxation for us.  No doubt there was probably some great event going on but the sun was out and the weather was warm which could only mean one thing.  Beach day!  Spent the afternoon at Fuji Beach.  Something about being in the ocean.  It cleanses, it rejuvenates, it strengthens.  After the beach Monica and I out our jogging shoes on and hit our favorite place, Ke Ala Hele Makalae, the path.  It was nice to jog past familiar faces and to gaze out into the sea as the sun slowly dipped beyond the horizon.  It was nice to say hello to friends along the path as our weekend came to an end.  And yes…..I said hi to the dogs too.  Until next time, A hui hou!

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