Aloha to all my IB friends!
The Scottish dancers in Hawai‘i were delighted and honoured to have the privilege of ending the worldwide Commonwealth Ceilidh. The Scots have been in Hawai‘i since 1778 and today there are many descendants of Scottish emigrants living here, who are very proud of their Scottish heritage. We are lucky to have an RSCDS Hawaii Branch which was founded in 1973. There is also a Caledonian Society, a Saint Andrew’s Society, and an umbrella group called The Hawaiian Scottish Association who organize a Highland Festival every year in Honolulu. Burns Night is a very big event here during which our branch always present an SCD demonstration. The Address to the Haggis is usually preceded by a rousing performance from The Celtic Pipes and Drums of Hawai‘i.
Being one of two members of the International Branch, living in Hawai‘i, who could attend on June 21st, I was glad to represent our IB Scottish Dance family, while dancing with my fellow Hawai’i Branch Members. The event was held out in the open, in the grounds of the University Windward Community College. This College sits on the beautiful windward side of the island of O’ahu at the foot of of the magnificent Koolau mountain range. As happens in Hawai‘i, the evening began in sunshine which very quickly became darkness.
We are not a large group, but almost all of the Branch members, and many friends, including two Hula dancers, attended. There was a sense of continuity with the Scottish country dancers who had throughout the day danced in various parts of the world since the event began in New Zealand some twenty two hours earlier. In the spirit of Aloha, our Hula dancers joined us in Scottish dancing, and they also performed three graceful and sensuous Hula dances. As was very fitting, and symbolic, the Hula dancers laid a Hawaiian fresh flower lei on the globe, at the close of what was a hugely enjoyable, and memorable evening.
Thanks to the Board of RSCDS Hawai‘i, for organizing the event, and thanks to Branch friend Peter Tanaka for sharing his photos.
As we say here: “Mahalo”. Mary O’Brien Ichikawa