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Richard 's Story > Chapters > Honolulu -Kona (Hawaii) Residence

Memories of Hawaii-Kailua-Kona 

Date Range: 01/30/1962 To 12/30/2008   Comments: 1 Views: 9025
Attachments: Yes [1 Images]    

Hawaii the Home Reprieve Away from Home

During many summers as christmas of my life I had an opportunity to spend time in Honolulu-Waikiki as well as the rest of the islands where my father and I joint business and owned two spacious condominiums, one in the heart of Waikiki and another at the foot of Diamond Head 30 feet from the ocean.

Those were the days of walking up Kalakaua avenue and the 80's era of fun, sports and wild times in Waikiki.

 The years are as followed and make an account of many wonderful times in Hawaii.

1961 First Visit- My father played with Andre Kostelanetz at the Waikiki Shell, Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto #2, continued to the Hollywood Bowl the next year.

1964 Repeat Visit to Waikiki, my father plays with Kostelanetz.

1967 Concert Tour through the islands- One month stay


Repeat tours for concerts of My Father: Ozan Marsh

1974 (Christmas-New Years)

1975-Mid 1980’s

Several Trips: Real Estate Adventures-Bought a wonderful Condo overlooking the ocean at “Chateau Waikiki”-Investments/wild rides--Two storey condo overlooking Ala Wai Canal--

Exhibits in Honolulu- Kauai- Maui- Personal research in the arts-

1983- Study with painter/artist Willson Stamper- and exhibits in Waikiki, and Kona

1986-91: Repeat trips and purchases-investments in the islands-Exhibits of art-Research

1993- Return to Kona where to this day I have a two parcel piece of land (claimed and titled) to call my own on the Big Island- A solo camping trip, long stay for two months in the islands--Records of talks with natives, research as well as some exhibits in Kona-

1996 Return for long trip, remain in islands for a time-visiting old haunts-doing research in the islands--Meet the principal of the Kamehameha society (Order of King Kamehameha) honorary membership (since expired for the reconstruction of important Hawaii Heiu--discuss  property investments about cultural projects from previous trip- After the business, a special- solo hike from the ocean of the deep lava fields to the heights and crossing of Mauna Loa (by myself-video)

1999/2000-Return for a visit to the islands and millennium 2000-

2000/2001-Return to Maui and the Hawaii--Married Feb 8th 2001

2007-08 Return--Pulling together memories- a reprieve from society to memories-

On this particular trip I spent time In Kona Kailua and also Honolulu after being hired for a stint in Korea teaching. I was here a month mostly on R&R from a dynamic trip across America that had seen no reasonable end since I arrived back from Italy, and those wonderful successful events in Turin winning the Oscar della Arte, Accademico Michelangelo Buonarroti.

It was a long time ago during the late 70's and early 80's I am accounting for my life.

It was a good time growing up and having this opportunity.

I first visited Hawaii in mid year of 1961 for a brief week. The recollections were basically re-inspired by long home movies in classic 8mm that my father kept. He had been performing numerous times in solo concerts and workshops here as well as on occasions with Andre Kostelanetz (Then the conductor of the Honolulu Symphony)

It was an interesting time during the late 70's and 80' in Honolulu. There were numerous galleries up and down Kalakaua ave, or the strip as it was known. I have many memories of many places (just to mention) the old 'House Without a Key' and the old Halekulani Hotel, than a mere set of small wooden buildings interspersed by Koi ponds and at the edge of the ocean. (Of course that has been torn down many years ago and is now a gigantic concrete hotel)

I had watched Waikiki grow. As a young man I was a young investor in some of those properties.

In the early 80's I stayed several months (perhaps my longest stay) I studied art at the Honolulu Academy-some open classes when I was there and introduced to a Willson Stamper, an artist and teacher who gave private lessons (He was a really good artist and teacher) I took lessons with him at his studio in Kailua Hawaii. He was an insistent teacher. Twice a week I would take the bus with my materials over to Kailua and work afternoons at his studio (which was a small building on pylons that reminded me of a Gauguin retreat not far from the beach) He was an insistent man and very good at his techniques. (I can elaborate on his painting-he was also a restorer too)

This same summer I would go on sketching/painting tours around the islands and spend some time down in Waikiki.

A Special Occasion Meeting Barack Obama (1983)

      One memory- A group of people that I met several times a week down in the center of Waikiki for coffee. ( I believe it was on Lewers Street and several other happenstance meetings)

The place was called the Islander Coffee House. I frequented the cafe since I was young with my parents, knowing some of the people who worked there, a lady named “Flo” a waitress who gave a special meaning to Aloha.  I usually went out for morning painting-journal sessions for a few hours each day, coffee and good intelligent conversation would sometimes be a part of the fare. I met this certain group of people, a group of intellectuals who would talk politics and reason during my morning sessions.

On one occasion-

A young man extremely well dressed and with a natural polished demeanor came to the table and we began to be involved in discussions of the morning, which were sometimes  in either the arts or politics.

We stormed about politics in the mid-east and far east, as well as current events, telling our insights and differences the way intellectuals do in coffee-shop conversation, the ashtray filling up, and coffee cups primed for the next venture of polite argument.

I met Barak on several different times in Waikiki and another time, casually passing in front of the Royal Hawaiian.

He had a very intriguing way of conversation and convincing candor.

I had told him of some of my adventures in asia and we shared some insightful conversations during this time.

Sometimes I look back in my memory and remember this fellows dynamic temperament and sense of polish as a young man. One would say  this young man was so polished as to be a diplomat presenting himself to the United Nations when he sat down. The young man was educated. We became friends over the next few meetings over debate and coffee. A young (law student) he had been studying in California’s Rosemont College and was making a big move to New York for his graduate education at Columbia. (Very ideally suited for him, as one could sense that by the essence of this young fellow there was either going to be a brilliant lawyer, a statesmen or congressmen in his future) I had recently completed my degree from the University of Arizona, and was headed to New York to continue my Masters-We talked a lot about education as well as  his time as a youth in Asia, the culture and differences, in polite aspects-World Culture, as well as politics and I was impressed at the depth of our conversations, as well as the intensity the group, somewhat usual during the period, since

I used to find myself in the particular company of interesting people, talking politics as well as arts during this segment of my life where ever I would be.

His name was Barack Obama and I frequently forgot his name at that time because of its unusual character and focus. He promised to stay in touch as I was moving to New York, but time passed and he is now President.

I would say that still to this time he has that energy and emotion in his speeches, the Barak I remember being very likable and courteous as an individual, a high caliber individual...statesman material.

I remember when I saw him for the first time (on television long before the elections and his advancement into politics) I remembered him and still have his address etched in one of my sketchbooks from the period. One of the statements which he made (I had remembered from before as it was an old adage...but he reiterated as a matter of some topic of conversation: "The World would be at peace if it were lead by a Philosopher King"--A Noble Interest in humanity struck me from our talks as well as one evening going to a nice, upscale club in Waikiki, his candor with politeness being ‘impeccable’--

Unfortunately we didn't meet in New York, my residence from the period 1983 to 1986.

The idea stuck with me.

Of all the people that I would vote for President without a bit of reserve...

I returned to Hawaii for years after for short trips through the ci and 90's. Finally the main destination was Kona-Kailua although I had seen all the islands.

In the late 80's and during the 90's I had the opportunity to return to Kailua and venture off into the core of the land. My interest was not vacation during some visits but to provide as a deeper fulfillment in my inquiry of Native Hawaiian Art which seemed to fulfill a niche for study in approach to my art and the history which I personally involve. I went around to the little Hawaiian villages which were then not well known or developed.

Milolii and others that dotted the southwestern coast. I backpacked by myself (no tour here) the Volcano's National Monument as well as did a solo trip up to see Manna Loa and spent several days. I remember this trip was interesting, walking trails and wearing out the soles on my brand new hiking boots because of the severely sharp lava. I slept on the porch of Red Cabin...wandering around in early evening and looking up at the stars or trying to put up a tent in the winds that would gust-up and take the unit off into a thatched and spiny thicket. I did this as well as walk the south island trails down to South Point and the little olivine beach. Sometimes I would meet people, but mostly not. I just would bring several books of watercolor and materials with me to view the amazing contrasts of color that would present themselves on these islands. (More here...far more)

Later in 2001 I was married in Kailua-Kona at the Kamehameha temple in Kailua. (This I remember very well..and also the small studio I had that spring that looked over the entire expanse of Kona-Kailua) There were many memories here...and I still wait for the opportunity to return, just to hear those waves and see the blackness of lava against the steel blue water that really inspired some of the contrasts in my art.

Meeting Barack Obama in Waikiki, Talks, Inspirational quotes as a student at Rosemont College, a definite statesmen, even then, now President Barack Obama-

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Member Since
Aug 2007
Patrick Tardif said:
posted on Feb 21, 2009

I kind of agree with that line:
"The World would be at peace if it were lead by a Philosopher King". Nice story, thanks for sharing.