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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The "Exploring An Ancient Hawaiian Village" Story

The Opaeka'a Falls on Kauai.  Opaeka'a
means "rolling shrimp" which were once
abundant in the steam above the falls.
It was an ordinary day.  Had just stopped along the road at the overlook for the Opaeka'a Waterfall to take some photos when I saw the sign about a hundred yards away that advertised the Kamokila Hawaiian Village.  Walked across the street to take a look and found a lush, verdant valley below with a winding river carrying quite a few canoes and kayaks along the Wailua River.  Carol and I as well as traveling companions Jerry and Just Sue decided we would take a look at what is a historical site and headed down the steep road in our car toward the village.  The village is nestled in the Wailua River Valley, close to the falls I just photographed as well as the Fern Grotto an another secret waterfalls.  The land on which the village is located has been leased by the Fernandes Ohana (Native Hawaiian family) for over four generations.  
On the opposite of the road reveals
the river valley and directly below
me is the Kamokila Hawaiian Village.
Two hurricanes have struck the village over the years and it has been rebuilt three times. It is allegedly the village where Kaumualii, King of Kauai assembled his war canoes.  We finally reached the bottom of the incline and there stood a beautifully restored village with everything from a men's eating house to remnants of the oracle tower.  Parked and walked toward the entrance where we were greeted by the guard cat.  Paid our way in and found one of the most beautiful and inviting restored locations of our vacation.  We walked the grounds, reading the information posted by each restored building as well as looking at all the native flowers and fruits.  Probably be easier to show you some of the restored structures through photos, so my narration will stop and the visual journey will continue.  Hope you enjoy the ancient village known as Kamokila.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy. 

Kauai's royalty ruled from this area.  This is part of the Kamokila Hawaiian Village that we discovered along the Wailua River. 
We were greeted by this furry friend.
This is the Hale Ali'i Akoakoa Chief's Assemble House.  The high ranking chiefs and royalty would gather here to discuss plans for the village.  Anyone who tried to enter when a meeting was being held would be killed.  All business in this house was private.  The royal colors were red and yellow and cloaks, feathered helmets, capes and jewelry were worn by the rulers.  Chiefs had ranks and anyone who stepped in his shadow was in big trouble.  
The Hale Pohaku Hanau Birth House.  Women would enter this house when they were about to give birth.  They were supposed to lay on the rocks so the child could be born between the rocks.  Hey, it's what the sign said!
The Hale Pe'a Menstrual House.  The Hawaiian people had some strange customs and had a house for just about anything.  Women came here during menstruation.  They would weave crafts and make things to take back home during their stay.  This house was usually along the outskirts of a village since the time for the women was considered to be unclean.  I must admit it probably was a boring time and I didn't see any TV sets anywhere in the room.
The Hale Mua men's Eating House.  Men and women ate separately.  Men ate some foods such as pork, red colored fish and some types of banana and coconut that women were not allowed to eat.  These foods were believed to bring power to the person who ate it.  Since men did the hunting and fighting, they were the only ones allowed to eat these foods.  Poi, which comes from the kale or taro plant was eaten by everyone.  When boys reached the age of six they could eat with the men and all ate with their fingers and used small bowls and Ipu gourds for holding their food and water.
The Hale Moe Sleeping House was for the entire family.  The family would consist of  parents, children, and grandparents.  It was also used for visiting, playing games and telling stories.  The family slept on woven mats made from the Lauhala tree that would cover most of the ground.  Small candles made from Kukui nuts would light the room.  The weather was always warm, but I'm sure the insects were a problem in a house like this.
Some of the lush surrounding grounds.
Bananas grew everywhere. 
This is the Halau Hula House.  Originally men were only allowed to perform hula.  It was taught indoors because it was very sacred.  It was an art that was accompanied by song, chant and music.  Then the men got wise and decided they would rather watch the women dance the Hula and taught them.  Hula was done mainly for entertainment and would tell a story while the musical instruments made the hula more amusing and interesting.
One of my favorite flowers.
This is part of an Oracle Tower or Lananu'u Mamao.  Around it the priest or priestess would offer or ask for divine guidance. 
This is an Hawaiian Bowling alley known as a Ulu Maika.  At least that is what we were told.
As we left the village another feline wished us well.
An aerial view of the Kamokila Hawaiian Village we visited.  It was taken from a brochure advertising the village.
Carol and LDub as an Hawaiian warrior and Hula dancer.
Friend Jerry wearing his African Tulip earbuds. 

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