Aloha is inseparably connected to Hawaii. You cannot think of aloha without thinking of Hawaii and vice versa. Take any bus tour, attend any luau and you will get your fill of aloooooooha’s. I wonder though, does this word deserve a bit more reverence? As many people know, aloha means more than just hello and goodbye. I cannot remember where I read it but my favorite definition of the word is “joyfully sharing life in the present.” Aloha is to give without an expectation to receive. However, for aloha to truly work, for aloha to be produced if you will, it IS a two way street. “Aloha is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence” (Ho’okipa, Module Four, 5). My responsibility is to do everything I can to help visitors to the island have a fun, safe and meaningful experience. I must truly care about them as people and constantly assess their needs and expectations throughout the tour. Their responsibility is to open their minds and hearts and respect the culture and heritage of the Hawaiian islands. If we all work together and show love and respect towards one another, aloha will be the end product.
The goal of Circle Island Tour is to produce aloha during each one of our tours. So from us to you, aloha. Not a great big alooooooha, just a quiet, reflective aloha (probably accompanied with “da shaka” which will be discussed in future posts).
Ho’okipa Me Ke Aloha, Module Four. Professional Training in Hawaiian Hospitality. Kapi’olani Community College, Interpret Hawai’i, 2004.