2008 YMA Hawaii Trip

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Reflections of Hawaii

Roaches in the Van! by Hishi Oto
For weeks leading up the the Hawaii trip everyone said to me “oh its your first time in Hawaii, you`ll love it there”. People only said that it would be hot and the beaches were nice. the beaches were indeed nice, but everyone forgot to mention the giant cockroaches! the cockroaches were such a common occurrence that no one seemed to think twice about them crawling across the wall, on the bed, in the Buddha Bus. For someone who had to live in a place that once had cockroaches, I was not happy about this. In addition to the unwelcome visitors in the bus, there always seemed to be a gecko lizard in the shower, ready to scare me in the early morning.

Chanting in Hawaii by Hishi Oto
The temples in Hawaii were also very different. we stayed at a 108 year old temple, caked in red dust, membership dwindling, yet the nicest o-najin i think i have ever seen, and a newly restored honwanji temple, with paintings and all new gold leaf. most temples had large windows and large front doors. I quickly learned that these would all be opened during service as the temperature would rise very quickly( especially in robes). The reverend would open with vandana te sarana, here in the States we don’t open service with vandana te sarana but in hawaii it is tradition. Kujo sensi does it every weekend so I was familiar with it. I can see now why we we had chanted it in service, as kujo sensi was a minister some of the temples I stayed at in Hawaii.

Shrimp Truck by Hishi Oto
Located on the north shore, the locals have these shrimp trucks, kinda like the taco truck or “roach coach” in nor-cal. Our advisor, Jim, every time we drove by one, with the long line he would say “lets stop and get some”, but he was usually out voted by the girls wanting to go to the beach or shave ice. finally after Jim had dropped off the group at the beach, rev kobata, jim, lauren and i(hishi) we went on a quest to find Giovanna shrimp truck. out of all the things people said i had to do, nobody told me about the shrimp truck. delicious warm shrimp served with rice. we also got to sign our name ON the truck. an unexpected treat on the secluded north shore.

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