Friday, January 15, 2016

Polynesian Cultural Center

This morning we tried to really make it a vacation morning, by 1) sleeping in just a little bit, 2) getting in a morning workout - first at the gym together and then I went for a little jog along the shore. Then 3) taking a bath! You know you're a living it up Mom when you can exercise and bathe without an interruption. Then the luxuries continued as I 4) painted my toenails and fingernails. And finally, the perfect morning concluded with 5) Read the scriptures (Book of Mormon) while I sat at he patio and enjoyed the ocean sounds-
This is going to by how every morning goes when we're empty nesters, right? Yes! So, the Polynesian Culture Center opened at noon. We left around 11:15... later than we wanted, but oh well. Traffic got a little slow around the Wiamea Valley, took an hour and a half to get to the PCC. It was kinda drizzly, so we bought ponchos, then off to wander and explore the cultures of the Pacific!

I personally, loved the differences between the the genders that seemed to prevail, seems like without them you don't have a culture at all. Girls all had long hair and dresses, took care of children and making the hut a home. The tapa demonstration in the Tonga village was awesome. Who told them that you could smash bark and it would do that? Like, seems there would have to be some angelic visitation to guide them in figuring all that out. Smash the bark and it won't break but will be a long strong sheet of cloth. Incredible.
They just have so much culture, made me feel like my US or Utah culture is either totally non existant or a complete fraud. No dances that tell stories of our ancestors, no generational poems we pass on to our children, no ceremonial clothing we wear to the village gatherings. I've decided I would like to identify culturally as Polynesian. I think I'll start by beginning to compose poetry about how Corey and I met and our travels. Loved all the dances, especially the Samoans with their run in place fast at the beginning, looked like a good fun workout (although it's probably rich in meaning and symbolism, not just for exercise, right?) Sigh, what a boring American society I belong to with my treadmill.
This guy was from Samoa  too, He was really funny. You crack open a coconut with a sharp rock. Roca in Spanish, Little Rock if your from Arkansas. He said silly things like that. And I was also kicking myself for not making baskets from the leaves of our coconut tree in Brazil! I was sitting there wishing I could weave and braid grass!
We went to one more place in the Tonga village before the Luau dinner. We were laughing so hard we cried. He called out three reluctant volunteers from the audience. He'd show them how to dance, then they'd have to repeat it. He'd show them how to yell, then they'd repeat it. Lastly, he showed them how to drum and chant at the same time - and they repeated it.
The first two Americans did pretty good, then he got this poor Japanese guy up there who was such a good sport, but he didn't know what the drummer man was saying, but he did try to repeat everything...
And when he did a good job, he wanted to give him a high five, but Mr Japan as he was called just tried to copy what he was doing in giving a high five to the air, it was so funny, eventually they did high five each other (with some help from his friends in the audience translating)
Also, that knock that people do on doors with a "ba-ba-ba-ba-ba..... Bum Bum" (how do I write that out?!) He did that on the drums and they had to repeat it, but Mr. Japan would do three "Bum Bum Bum"s instead of two, they did it over and over and over again and he kept doing three, until his friends who were dying of laughter helped translate and he did the two. It was great, we were laughing so hard we were crying, so funny.  Then over to the Luau ~ I saw some pretty flowers on the way~
Great food, fire dancers, (update with more pics later) then looking in the souvenier shops and we ended the evening with the "Ha- breath of life" show. Great stuff. A nice drive back home and we went to bed around 11, living it up on vacation!
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