Contributed by Lani Kwon
Today, June 7th, 2018, is the first anniversary of Hiking Hawaii Cafe’s present location at Doubletree Hilton Alana, on 1956 Ala Moana Boulevard!
Crystal Evans is proud of the service she and her staff provide at Hiking Hawaii Cafe, which includes guided hiking and custom private sightseeing tours of O’ahu, as well as serving delicious, freshly-made salads, wraps, paninis, pizza, açaí bowls, smoothies, juices, coffee, tea and other healthy options at their cafe.
They started as a hiking business in 2010, and they expanded to include a cafe in 2012, which also caters. They have vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options, as well as omnivore fare, and their food is affordably priced $6.95-$12.95.
Guided tours include transportation and sightseeing stops to the North Shore or West Side of O’ahu, ranging $165-$175, while hiking excursions include transportation and guided hikes to gorgeous locations such as Manoa Falls, Kuli’ou’ou Ridge, Makapu’u, and a sunset hike at Kalawahine. These hikes range in price $45-$65. Custom, private tours range from $50/hour for 1-2 people up to $125/hour for 5-7 people, and it’s also possible to rent a dog to come along with you. Crystal says that Leila can come along on the hikes and has been popular because “people who are traveling miss their dogs, and they can request a hike with her.”
Hiking Hawaii Cafe also has a small shop with sustainable, eco-aware products, such as stainless steel water bottles and straws, reusable utensils, as well as a hiking and travel library that clients can browse. There are also a multitude of hot sauces and other condiments for customers to enhance their food and drink to their own tastes. Unique in every way, Hiking Hawaii Cafe has become my favorite place to gather friends, family and clients.
Hiking Hawaii Cafe is a not-to-miss experience for tourists and locals alike, and I love them, and wanted to share them with you.
1956 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu, HI 96815 (at Doubletree by Hilton Alana on the edge of Waikiki; free valet parking with validation)
Open daily 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and available for evening event rentals
Facebook: hikinghawaii, hikinghawaiicafe
Instagram: hikinghawaii808, crystalcavazosevans
Health & Wellness Coach
Yoga, Barre and soon Aerial Yoga Instructor
Our own Kendra Gillis has been expanding her new professional and personal horizons enormously… fortunately for all of us! Kendra graduated last autumn from the Maryland University of Integrative Health with her Masters of Arts degree in Health and Wellness Coaching. Wow – a Masters! She didn’t wait long to implement her skills. She is now providing our students with brief mindful movement consultations as well as offering private wellness coaching at Still & Moving Center.
Amazingly, she has taken three teacher trainings in the last year, including Barre Above, her 500 hour level Yoga Teacher Training, and her Nia White Belt intensive. Whew! If you haven’t tried her Yoga Barre class – sign up in advance. It’s gaining popularity rapidly.
If all THAT weren’t enough, Kendra heads off at the end of this month to up her game with an Aerial Yoga teacher training in California. We look forward to her extending her already impressive teaching skills into Aerial Yoga when she returns.
As great as all these accomplishments are, the real reason we’re so pleased to celebrate Kendra’s magnificence is more personal. Over the last year, we watched Kendra lovingly brave the loneliness and disruption of her husband’s long and irregular military deployments. Later we held her close as he suddenly announced from thousands of miles away that he wanted a divorce. Kendra faced this devastating news, dealt with the emotional tidal wave it brought with it, fought to preserve her marriage, then completed the divorce cleanly. In a relatively short time, she has begun rebuilding her life on a solid foundation of increased self-awareness and personal strength.
In the eye of a hurricane of her personal life, Kendra remained surprisingly calm and intentional in righting her ship. And she’s unafraid of sharing the story of her journey with others. Such life experiences, well-processed, lend incredible insight and compassion to a professional who is coaching others through their challenges. She has much to offer her clients. We are mightily proud of our girl Kendra.
Contributed by Sharlene Bliss
Nia and aerial teacher Shar shares dietary tips from her life experiences. Digestion isn’t easy for everyone. Being able to process our food well takes priority over many other eating considerations. Dr. Andrew Weil provides a new food pyramid for healthy eating.
- I’ve had enough to eat when I feel 80% full – this tip came from my Aikido sensei. It’s much easier to dance, do aerial or any activity when I’m not bogged down by eating too much. I digest better and I’m also more alert.
- Eat the vegetables first to aid in digestion and absorption – this tip came from my internist. Some people call it eating ‘light to heavy’ since vegetables are generally easier and faster to digest. Puristat says: “Think of your digestive system as a highway; if the slower vehicles are allowed to go first, the result will be a traffic jam. If the slower vehicles follow the faster vehicles you’re highway will run smoothly and efficiently.”
- Follow an anti-Inflammatory diet – I like the anti-inflammatory diet and pyramid from Dr. Andrew Weil.
Still & Moving Center is a vegetarian, alcohol-free facility.
Wendy Kia brings a personalized, professional care to every garment her dry cleaning business takes in. In the industry now for over 40 years, Wendy bought Marie Louise Cleaners in March of 2006 as a way to move back home to Oahu and be near her son Nate and his growing family. She’s currently the proud grandmother of 5, and Nate is an integral part of the family business.
People who care to maintain their nice wardrobes inspire Wendy’s service. Hotel uniforms or bed sheets go to less specialized cleaners. Whether it’s a wedding dress to be preserved, a King Kamehameha cape for Punahou School drama department, a costume for Hawaii 5-0 or Jurassic Park, an outfit for Neiman Marcus, or a business suit for one of the Park Lane condominium tower residents, these are the kinds of unique, specialty items Wendy caters to. Her staff handles each garment individually. They even provide free pickup and delivery.
Walking into Wendy’s business, I got none of that toxic chemical smell I dread at most drycleaners’. Marie Louise Cleaners uses “Green Earth” cleaning products. These environmentally friendly products break down into mostly water and sand. Their cleaning is not only safe for nature, it’s safe for employees, too. Wendy believes all dry cleaners will eventually be required to use such products, but in the meantime, her business is on the cutting edge of responsible cleaning.
Wendy credits her loyal staff members’ careful attention to detail for satisfying their many happy customers, from high end retailers, to luxury condo residents, to movie and TV shows. Marie Louise Cleaners truly provides world-class dry cleaning service.
Letter from the Director
Kwan Yin, the goddess of mercy and compassion, is often pictured accompanied by a carp. She’s the one whose statue graces our lobby at Still & Moving Center. Her selfless credo, a bodhisattvic pledge, has always inspired me:
Never shall I seek nor receive private, individual salvation; never shall I enter into final peace alone; but forever and everywhere shall I live and strive for the redemption of every creature from the bonds of conditioned existence.
A bodhisattva is a Christ-like being who has gained enlightenment, yet remains on the edge of final liberation to help and teach all others who have not yet progressed so far – even if it means living another thousand lives and dying another thousand deaths.
I’ve been musing on Kwan Yin more than usual. A leadership training I attended last month includes painting as a technique to gain insight. Our presenter, Amber Bonnici, asked us to consult with and paint our inner wise woman. A friend at the training looked at my picture and told me that I had painted Kwan Yin. I shrugged. Maybe. I didn’t know, and I brought my painting home unnamed.
Back home we have a koi pond with fish Cliff selected from Kodama Koi Farm a couple years ago. They are like swimming jewels, so beautiful. I had been immediately taken by the presence of the largest koi, a golden colored female. Kwan Yin is traditionally pictured with a great carp. Knowing that koi are a form of carp, I instantly named our golden fish Kwan Yin.
We enjoyed watching the koi grow accustomed to their new home. Cliff has especially loved Kwan Yin, the clear leader of the group, gaining enough of her trust for her to eat from his hand. The pond of koi has given him great joy.
Shortly after I return home with my painting, Cliff devotes a day to draining and cleaning the pond to get the filtration system again functioning optimally.
He carefully scoops out each fish with a big net, placing them in a large inflatable child’s pool filled with pond water. Keeping an eye on the koi as he does his cleaning, Cliff notices that they are not acting in a normal way. In fact some are bleeding out their gills, a sign of stress, according to Kodama’s koi book.
Alarmed, Cliff cuts short his cleaning operation and uses his fire hose to quickly fill the pond with City water. He returns the fish to their home, hoping the chlorine of the water wouldn’t be too hard on them, but, much to his distress, two of them die in the process. He’s really sad.
A couple days later, it’s time to clean up the muddy lanai and yard all around the pond. He uses a pressure washer to efficiently hose everything down. The din is really annoying in the house, and Marta and I are having trouble hearing each other as we work.
We never think about how it might be affecting the fish. Doesn’t cross our minds.
Nearing the end of his task, Cliff moves the pressure washer to the low concrete bridge over the pond evidently causing a tremendous reverberation through the water below. That does it. Kwan Yin swims out from under the bridge to a narrow gap between the bridge and the stone end of the pond. Cliff’s beloved fish leaps straight up, vertical, a full third of her body beyond the surface of the water, right in front of him, fixing her angry gaze upon Cliff, as if to say, “Stop! You’ve already killed two of my kind.” And he immediately turns off the washer, shaken.
The next morning Kwan Yin isn’t swimming well. Her tail is bruised, as if she has hit it on something coming back down into the water from her leap. Cliff is leaving the island on a trip and I need to drive to work. We aren’t able to reach Taro, president of the koi farm, for advice, so we herd Kwan Yin over to the waterfall end of the pond with the most oxygenated water and hope for the best.
When I arrive home late afternoon, I find Kwan Yin, head down, tail up out of the water. I manage to reach Taro and show him the fish over my phone screen. “That is NOT a good sign,” he tells me with a worried voice. “I’ll be over right away.” In preparation, Marta and I bucket 300 gallons of pond water into the inflatable pool.
When Taro arrives, a short, compact man with kind eyes, he goes immediately to Kwan Yin, whose tail is still bobbing weakly above the water. He kneels and tenderly lifts the large fish in his arms, carefully laying her into the inflatable pool. Her bruised tail is an inflamed red where it connects with her body, and he determines that it is infected.
For a long time, he squats over her, holding her down with both hands, keeping her tail submerged under water. He is deeply engaged, fish-whispering.
Under Taro’s direction, we add antibiotic and salt to the water. When a fish is stressed, it takes in more water than it can expel, and the salt makes it easier for the fish to release water taken in. We add a double bubbler that Taro has brought to oxygenate her water.
Next Taro asks for iodine. We apply the iodine with a cotton swab to her tail and each of her fins. I find a way to weight her tail with a soft tube, fish line and fish weights, to keep it under the water.
It’s been a couple hours now, and Taro has done all that he can. Kwan Yin’s right side keeps floating about the water’s surface, so Taro asks that we wet it once in a while through the night. He advises us to call on her strong spirit to pull her through the night, and telephone him the next morning.
Night has fallen long ago, so I set up a cot adjacent to the shallow pool where I can simply lie down and rest my outstretched hand on her side to keep it under the water. And so we pass the night.
Taro has taught me how to sense her breathing by placing my hand near her gills in the dark, so I know she’s still with us. A couple times I feel her energy ebbing and I call her to rally and come back to us.
At some point, her side-floating body begins to right itself, and now my hand that had been on her flank side begins to feel her dorsal fin. I’m startled to the core. That fin is the most amazing thing I’ve ever touched in my life. It is completely sentient. There the fish is taking in information and expressing its own being outwards. It’s giving me something like a galactic light show, but in a way that I can feel/sense, not see. For a brief moment I experience through her a window into the universe that I have never had before.
We’re now nearing the end of the night and she gives a couple shudders, giving me hope that she’s going to make it through the night.
I must have fallen asleep just before dawn. When my eyes open, it’s light and I look out on her golden body shimmering in the pool. She looks perfect and beautiful. ‘She’s healed!’ I rejoice. But then the bubbles covering the water over her clear away, and it was just a brief illusion: her bruise and infection have actually spread further up her body. I move my hand from her side to her gills, and they are no longer moving. We’ve lost her.
Marta and I bury her, in front of a buddha statue with a golden heliconia flower above the grave. I thank her for sacrificing her life to save the rest of her kin.
I still haven’t cried. I’m still so overwhelmed by the awe of the experience I had with her through the night. It filled me with such a sense of mystery, that a fish could show me so much about the universe we live in.
When I go upstairs for my morning meditation, there is the painting I brought back from the retreat. Her golden amber eyes are looking at me, and I realize that I have indeed painted a version of Kwan Yin. It dawns on me that in some incomprehensible way, the self-sacrificing nature of her being is teaching me – through a fish named in her honor – about our interconnectedness with all beings. And I begin to weep, in gratitude.
Dancing in joy and resting in stillness with you,
And you, dear reader?
Email me – I always love hearing from you.
Karen’s life has been spent collecting, enjoying and sharing what she loves: beautiful stories. Karen is currently one of our beloved Hula Awana dancers whom you’ll watch in many of our Still & Moving Center performances. A lot of her storytelling has come through theatre.
Karen’s most recent acting experience took place at Kumu Kahua Theatre with “A Cage of Fireflies”. The story of three Okinawan sisters in America and was so compelling, and Karen got to work with so many dear friends being in it, she broke all her rules for herself and rehearsed over the holiday season that she usually reserves as family time!
Back in 1979-1980 she took her savings and moved to New York to enjoy the museums and theatres. There she worked with the NYU Creative Arts Team to provide workshops to special ed students and their special teachers. While doing creative movement with a class of special ed students, she kept trying to include a tall guy standing alone on the side of the room. She finally managed to get him onto the floor, laughing and moving with all the others. She afterwards found out he was the school guard for the class – not a student at all!
In her work with stories and drama over the years, Karen has helped thousands of children and adults to learn to express themselves – whether through words or pantomime – and to gain self-confidence, especially the quiet, shy ones. She loves the chance to have a positive influence on kids’ lives.
Karen majored in cultural anthropology, minored in drama and has an elementary education degree. She spent decades with the Honolulu Theatre for Youth sharing the dramatic arts. Beginning as an actor paid with love and meals from MacDonald’s (!), she eventually became a member of the paid acting company and the Education Director. With HTY Karen conducted many teacher and student creative drama workshops. Working directly with teachers allowed Karen to further expand her work to their students.
The teachers often asked her to do plays with their classes, which often had more kids than could fit in regular play scripts. That’s when Karen started putting together performances of the student’s creative writing and writing plays of her own.
As Karen studied taiko drumming with local Taiko master Kenny Endo, she found a way to weave taiko into her stories. Taiko used to be the heartbeat for villages in Japan. Honolulu Theatre for Youth commissioned her to write a play incorporating taiko and Japanese folktales. Kenny Endo agreed to compose music for the play and perform in it.
While on sabbatical with her family in Japan, Karen began writing the play about a village of rice farmers. One day as she was walking through a large field of rice, the sound and movement of the wind undulating through the plants brought her the name of her play: Song of the Rice, Song of Life: A Tale of Japan.
Her play incorporates Japanese folktales that were happening to the rice farmers. They bring in taiko to help end the drought that was threatening their farms. Her personal experience includes writing about that scene of the play in the middle of the night, when she began to hear thunder in the background. Just when she was writing about the thunder and taiko drumming coinciding to end the drought, the rain actually started to fall onto the roof and yard of their own house, a lovely concurrence of storytelling and nature.
Karen’s play was accepted by the Kennedy Center for the “New Visions, New Voices” Festival for young audiences in Washington, DC in 1996. She successfully negotiated to bring Kenny Endo and his enormous taiko drum, at least 9 feet long, to Washington for the performance. As Kenny’s started drumming, the kids and the rest of the audience were enraptured. That drum became the heartbeat of the kids.
At a playwrights festival in Los Gatos, California, Karen stayed at the Villa Montalvo estate donated to the arts. There she further developed her Song of the Rice play for a staged reading in collaboration with other playwrights for the San Jose Repertory Theatre. Her play was then produced in Los Angeles. Eventually, Karen would like to see her play produced in Hawaii.
Besides the theatre, for two decades, Karen went around the State through the University of Hawaii Outreach program, into the community and classrooms as a storyteller, sometimes with drama and creative movement follow-ups. She started with folktales, with the collected wisdom of the ages, then went into personal stories of her family. She would end her sessions by urging the audience to share their stories with their own families. When people think about their legacy, they usually think of money and land. Karen teaches that one of our most important legacies is our stories. Unless we tell them, they will die with us. We need to tell stories of our own lives, our parents’ lives and tell our kids stories about their younger selves. The beginning of Karen’s own life tale starts with the positive story her wonderful, loving Mom and Dad always told her about adopting her as a baby… People came up afterwards and told Karen how important that message was to them.
All of these dramatic endeavors are explorations of our humanness, of what makes us tick, of finding our voices, of finding how creative we are, to gain trust in ourselves as creative beings.
There’s so much fear of death in our culture. Karen’s a collector of positive stories about death. Honolulu’s storytelling meistro Jeff Gere invited her to share stories about death for public consumption, young and old – funny and heartwarming. Karen was with her mom when she passed away, her face lit up from within. Karen sat with her mom during labored breathing, she gave her mom permission to “go be with Dad”. Karen’s son arrived later, looked at his grandmother’s face and agreed it was luminous. Being a caregiver teaches us so much wisdom about life and death.
As another community contribution, Karen’s been able to share with friends and friends of friends the cancer journey that she went on. Her story joins the nutritional knowledge of her naturopath with the allopathic treatment of her oncologist. People are so frightened by hearing they have cancer. Karen never uses “war” terms around cancer, instead using terms like “path” and “journey”. Telling her story of surviving endometrial cancer bolsters others, giving them hope for their own recovery.
Karen’s interest in the rich variety of human stories began in the 2nd grade with her teacher Mrs. Ohta. The teacher took the class on field trips to a Quaker meeting house and a Catholic church in Manoa Valley, then to Buddhist temple in Nu’uanu, followed by an authentic tea ceremony with one of the student’s Japanese grandmother. Mrs. Ota had each child create their own beautiful ceramic tile mosaic in their classroom. Her teacher’s legacy of living a creative life, believing in each human being and making a difference in others’ lives is part of the person Karen has become.
We are so delighted Karen has made Still & Moving Center a part of her life story for so many years!
Inspired by Kodama Koi Farm
Kodama offers beauty to the world by raising lovely, brilliantly-colored fish. This is what they love, have been doing for half a century, and do best! Meeting Taro, the president of Kodama Koi Farm, I got the deep sense of a person doing exactly what he loves and is called to do in this lifetime.
Nishikigoi translates to a Japanese koi of a special, brocade coloring, similar to rich silk fabric with beautiful patterns: traditional fabric of the kimono worn in Japan. Much like a snowflake, each of these special creatures possess unique and elegant markings. Nishikigoi represent living beauty… their graceful movement and unique look leave a deep and pleasing impression, bringing a peaceful joy to many.
Each of us has special skills and gifts to offer the world. Whether it’s the way we make others feel when we smile, or how we relate to little children and elders, whether it’s the music we make or the vegetables we grow, the meals that we prepare or how we take care of animals or our homes, or how we present ourselves as beautifully as a flower, we can all enjoy and offer beauty to the world. And doing so makes us feel good.
Sometimes we try to be someone we are not and fit a square peg into a round hole. Following Kodama Koi Farm philosophy let’s concentrate on what we know, what we are good at, and on sharing that with others. We we answer our life callings, world benefits and we realize a deep sense of satisfaction.
Kodama Koi Farm finds passion and purpose in the tradition of enjoying and offering beauty to the world through koi – living symbols of peace. They just celebrated 50 years of business.
Taro Kodama’s father, Mamoru Kodama originally founded their koi farm in Japan in 1967, where Taro first joined his side to work with the fish. Eventually moving to Mililani on Oahu to start Kodama Koi Farms, Taro has been now serving koi lovers around the world for decades.
Kodama Koi Farms is the largest importer and distributor of high quality Japanese Nishikigoi in the United States. For this family and their employees, koi raising is not just a business: it is an art, a science, and a lifestyle. Kodama Farm koi are raised with care, love, and the highest quality food.
Since I was a little boy in Japan, my father ingrained in me that it is a privilege to raise and and sell the most beautiful high quality koi. It has been an honor to apply the lessons he taught me every day over the past 50 years.
We are committed to educate our team with this same knowledge and tradition that my father passed on to me with the intention of sustaining the highest quality as we bring you the most beautiful koi.
Growing up in Japan, my father instilled in me the Kodama family commitment to only offering genuine Japanese Koi from their birthplace in Niigata. It honors the legacy and purity of these beautiful creatures.
I promised him that I’d remain true to our family tradition and never breed koi myself, but only import high quality Nishikigoi from top Japanese breeders.
Over the years, my father, and I have fostered many lasting relationships with top Japanese Koi breeders. My father and I meet these old friends to handpick every single koi that enters Kodama Koi Farm.
As one of nature’s living and growing beauties, it is critical to have the right facility for raising beautiful and healthy koi. They live in mineral rich water like their birthplace in Japan because volcanic rock is perfect for healthy growth. Our 12-acre koi farm in Hawaii makes us one of the world’s largest operations for Japanese koi.
As a Kodama, we proudly present our Japanese culture for these “Living Jewels” from the mecca of Japanese Koi.
Kodama Koi Farm holds over a half million koi in over 3 million gallons of pond space! Amongst the koi they have raised, more than 200 have won awards in koi shows, and 5 have recognized as Grand Champions at the All Japan Koi Show.
Hours of Operation
Monday – Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. HST
Saturday and Sunday: Closed
Kodama Koi Farm
P.O. Box 893086
Mililani, HI 96789
This is a story of the power of a timely Yes and the creative void initiated by a No.
Now that we are about to celebrate the 7 year ReBirthday of Still & Moving Center on March 18, 2018, I’m musing back to how I came to start this place… Here’s how it went:
My Black Belt Dilemma
When I took my Nia Black Belt training in 2009, the co-founder of Nia, Carlos Rosas, told us that he would give us our Black Belts if we simply made it through the week-long intensive to graduation day. He also reminded us that the Black Belt represents ‘mastery’. Indeed, I made it through that amazing, challenging, life-transforming, sweat-drenched, 75-hour-plus-homework week, and it was time for our graduation ceremony.
The Nia Black Belt incorporates and alchemizes all 13 principles of every Belt that has led up to it. That’s 39 principles in total. And although I had studied and moved through all the principles, I did not feel that I had achieved the level of mastery that the Black Belt represents. I was in a quandary. Carlos would give me my Black Belt, but did I deserve it?
I reflected on the time I had spent preparing for and participating in the Black Belt, and how I had really done my best, which is something we consent to do at the beginning of every Nia intensive training. I considered that this opportunity might not come again. Who knew how much longer Carlos and the other co-founder Debbie Rosas would continue their decades of Nia work? I wanted to say Yes… with a clear conscience.
So I made a deal with myself. I decided to accept the Black Belt by promising myself to re-take all previous Belt trainings as quickly as possible – hopefully within about the next year. I said YES! After gratefully accepting my Black Belt from Debbie and Carlos, I went home and signed up for the next White Belt training with them.
Over the succeeding 15 months, folks at Nia Headquarters in Portland, Oregon saw a lot of Renée Tillotson, flying in to take four intensive trainings. By the time I re-took my Brown Belt training, Carlos had decided to retire from Nia. Whew! I had just fulfilled my self-promise in time and now felt satisfied that I had truly earned my Black Belt. I was so glad to have found a way with integrity to say Yes when I had the chance!
A Black Envelope Arrives
A few months later, I went to our mailbox and found a mysterious black envelope from Nia headquarters, inscribed with silver ink, hand-addressed to me. I took it into the house, sat down, and carefully plied open the envelope, intensely curious. I recall the sensation of almost falling off my chair at what I read: Debbie Rosas was inviting me to become a Next Generation Nia Trainer.
At that time, there were only 14 Nia Trainers in the whole world, and thousands and thousands of Nia teachers. And Debbie was asking ME to become an international teacher Trainer!
The letter invited me to attend a weekend event several months later called Courting Your Destiny to determine for myself whether I was cut out to become one of the new Nia Trainers. It was an honor with responsibilities I had never sought, and though the invitation was flattering, I was inclined to write back with a flat ‘No thank you.’
However, my close friend Marta offered a different perspective: This is a really big opportunity and choice; I should really give it a lot of consideration before turning it down. And so I did.
I considered what it would be like to leave my dear, newfound home in Hawaii. I imagined traveling to all different corners of the world at least 4 times a year, training people to teach Nia, and all the effort it would take to drum up students in places I had never been to before. It would be a radical change from working in our construction office and teaching Nia 2 or 3 times a week at the Y, or rec center or health club.
Just breaking out of the mental construct of my life pattern and visualizing a sea change made me wonder: “Wow! First I became a school teacher because I didn’t know what else to do when I got out of college. Then I got into the construction business with Cliff because I could work from home while the kids were little. What do I REALLY want to want to be when I grow up?” Mind you, I was 54 at the time!
Courting My Destiny
I arrived at Courting Your Destiny event in Portland really open to what my inner promptings might tell me. Debbie gave us a precious 3-day weekend with times of moving and times of inspirational dialogue and poetry. On the morning of the last day, we all entered the Nia dance space in silence. Crimson cushions ringed the room – one for each of us who had been invited to become a next generation Trainer. In the center of the circle was a beautiful golden statue and vase of long stemmed roses, plus a lovely wooden box.
Debbie assured us that she would support us in whichever choice we made – there was no ‘right’ answer. Her assistants handed us a slip of paper on which we were to mark our choice: ‘Yes, my destiny is to become a Next Generation Nia Trainer,’ or ‘No, I my destiny is to remain a Nia teacher.’ We also received stationery for writing a letter to ourselves with the reason for our choice.
That was the time when my choice became clear to me: I said NO. I placed my written answer it in the box in the middle of the room. It was not my destiny to become an international Nia trainer roving the world. I did not stop with that No, however. The No had revealed a creative vortex of possibilities swirling around me. I wrote in my letter to myself that in fact, my path was create to a studio of my own in Hawaii with a beautiful dance floor where we could do Nia 7 days a week. It would be a studio for moving meditation of all sorts and would serve as a hub in the middle of the Pacific for teachers and students from around the world.
From that No, I went home in August of 2010 and told Cliff that I was not going to become a Nia trainer. Instead, I needed to create a studio. It was imperative. I wouldn’t be working much in our construction company any more. The studio was something I just had to do. And without really understanding why this was so important to me, Cliff supported my decision and helped me to find and build out a venue. Seven months later, on March 18th, 2011, we opened a studio at 1024 Queen Street in Honolulu.
I am forever grateful to Debbie Rosas for instigating my paradigm-shifting inquiry. And true to her word, she supported my choice, attending our first birthday and leading a number of Nia intensive trainings in our new studio.
With a Yes and a No and a lot of soul searching, Still & Moving Center came into being! Perhaps it’s not the final yes or no answer but the deep pondering of our life questions that makes the difference.
And you, dear reader?
Just hit reply – I always love hearing from you.
Welcoming Impact Hub Honolulu, our new, just-down-the-block neighbor! This shared office/event/community space makes itself available for everything from one-off events to full time office work, in shared or private areas. It’s a great place to meet clients or do some power computing. Fortunately for Still & Moving folks, Impact Hub provides easy grab-and-go food items, including vegetarian selections.
Impact Hub Honolulu offers a wide array of space set-ups for work share, with your first visit being free. The many types of membership start with 2 visits at $30/mo and go up to unlimited hours/mo at $200. Their motto is “CoWorking is the Better Way: Building community. Making impact.”
Before Impact Hub Honolulu began, Anne Weber was teacher at Maili Elementary School who thought there should be more teachers and students interconnecting with business. Now that Anne is managing the Impact Hub, she’s pioneering an Intern pipeline that Impact Hub will organize to interface willing students with welcoming businesses.
Two of Anne’s favorite moments so far at Impact Hub:
- Seeing the State Superintendent of Schools sitting in a beanbag chair during an all day workshop for teachers
- Shopping in the Keiki Marketplace with 27 businesses run by students ages 3 – 16 years old, who were even taking credit cards!
This last week Still & Moving Center’s yoga teacher Justin Bolle helped Impact Hub’s coworkers to stretch out between power business sessions.
Anne is looking forward to the Impact Hub hosting an event called Building Community with Women Entrepreneurs this coming Tuesday, March 13th, 12-1:30 pm, with lunch sponsored by American Savings Bank: Building Community with Women Entrepreneurs
1050 Queen St. #100 Honolulu, HI 96814