The moon — full tonight in Capricorn, just before 10 p.m. — was busy illuminating the darkness until the clouds rolled in and she was blotted out by the rain, which has continued to fall throughout this gray morning, cutting Koko’s and my walk very short, indeed.
I do not mind getting wet, but Koko is not fond of water, except to drink. She shuns rain, heavy dew, stream crossings and the surf, which she approaches only if I’m in it, and then never higher than her armpits. Baths are something to be endured, trembling all the while.
When you adopt an older dog, you never know what phobias have already been imprinted on their brains and must be gently navigated. Which is similar, actually, to dealing with the walking wounded in the world. Or in other words, pretty much everybody out there.
I’m always fascinated by the approach people take to trying situations. A friend told me she was greatly annoyed yesterday by a horrible noise, and went out to see what it was. No, it wasn’t the neighbor’s gardener doing his usual mow and blow, but two guys running a giant borer that breaks up the roots around each water meter so a digital mechanism can be installed to meter reading more efficient.
Her initial annoyance turned to worry for the guys, who weren’t wearing any ear protection, so she went inside and made them each a mango smoothie. They were so appreciative that she decided to make one for the gardener, too.
“I felt much better about the noise after that,” she said. “And then the noise was finally over, thank God!"
Another friend, born and raised North Shore, headed over to Hanalei Bay to surf that little swell that rolled in a week or so ago. Observing the line-up was all-white, he paddled out, yelling, “That’s right, I’m a local. Take a good look.” Then he proceeded to surf as if he was the only one at the break, and very soon he was, as all the other guys moved down.
“That sounds pretty intense,” I said. “Did you have a good time?”
“I had a fantastic time,” he said. “I had the place all to myself, the way I used to.”
Another surfer friend tells me the new “Suckaferry” (to use his term) TV commercial, which features interviews of drive on passengers and footage of two vehicles with stacks of surfboards and paddle boards, isn’t endearing the big boat with the guys at the line up — the group that kept it out of Kauai.
I suspect the passenger counts will crash when the ferry has to raise its current heavily subsidized rates of $49 per passenger and $65 per vehicle, one-way. That’s a better deal than the airlines can offer right now, but even the deep pockets of J.F. Lehman Co. can’t keep up with rising fuel costs for that guzzler. And the winter swells that sidelined it so often last year are just around the corner.
I noticed our own Jimmy Trujillo had a letter to the editor in The Garden Island the other day about the Superferry, in response to one of those wild rants, full of misinformation, blaming surfers/protestors for forcing us to miss out on all the goodies the Superferry could bring, including mainlanders traveling in motor homes.
Jimmy wrote, in part:
As one who chose to protest in the water I must remind him of another reason for being in the water: to protest the failure of government.
When Gov. Linda Lingle chose not to acknowledge over 6,000 signatures of Kaua‘i residents requesting a thorough EIS, the ultimate disrespect in my opinion, and the decision by Rep. Joe Suoki to not hear SB1276 on the floor of the House of Representatives, the failure of government helped to create the conditions for a “perfect storm” of dissent and disgust for officials and elected leaders to allow a company to put “profits before people.” This failure by our government and the attempt by HSF to bribe locals with $5 rides ahead of the Hawai‘i Supreme Court decision to overturn Judge Cardoza’s ruling helped to draw several thousand nonviolent protesters to assemble at Nawiliwili. By preventing the Alakai from operating before an EIS was conducted, these citizens, surfers and non-surfers, helped bring to light some of the failures of our government to provide clarity and guidance to businesses wanting to operate legally and ethically in Hawai‘i.
And that, in a nutshell, is what the Superferry outcry was really all about: a spontaneous, largely peaceful assertion of the public’s right to be consulted on issues that matter.