Written By Team Aloha, led by Wynn and Omer!
A group of twelve (along with Reggie the rooster) have been roaming Maui for a week. Shockingly, we all know how to swim. From orientation activities to planting taro, we’ve had a stellar time. We’ve swam a bit and saw whales from afar, visited two farms, went to the real Uncle George’s live slack guitar show with his buddies, and celebrated Lana’s birthday! On Uncle George’s farm, we helped him with a variety of tasks, including picking fruits from trees, gathering food for the animals, and weeding invasive plants. We then helped prepare a delicious spread of warm taro, cooked rice, incredible sweet potatoes, and fish, most of which came directly from the farm. In an emotional and moving presentation about the dark history of Hawaii, we learned about the lineage of Kamehameha, which was the dynasty that united the Hawaiian islands in the 1700’s, and its fall by the hands of the U.S. government in the late 1800’s. Kipuka Olowalu was our next adventure. It is an organization dedicated to promoting and practicing regenerative and sustainable farming using techniques dating back to original indigenous practices. Over the last three days at Kipuka Olowalu, we collected the seeds of a gorgeous silver endangered plant, helped clear out logs and branches from a river, and planted taro in rows of mud. We learned and participated in several traditional chants which we have loved, and started learning a great hula dance. Overall we have had an absolute blast connecting as a group and becoming fast friends!