Letter for Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Respect is born from experience

I have had a recent opportunity, in the last two weeks, to be on the other side of tourism. My daughter and I have traveled from Oregon to Southern California via the Grand Pacific Coast Highway. We have lodged in seven different places surrounded by the incredible nature of redwood and pine, valleys, rivers, and a coastline just as beautiful but so different from Hawaii nei.

After having the honor to travel and visit such sacred ground, here’s what I learned about being a visitor in another part of this beautiful world:

I learned that I would be sad if denied access to such special and breathtaking places; however, I also realized that the biggest part of visiting these places was learning about its history. Respect is birthed from this kind of knowledge, and a place is seen through a much more reverent lens. It is a tender and beautiful way to enter space, for both host and guest.

I am thankful for the native homes of the Takelma of the emerald green Illinois River, the Yurok of Klamath river and valley, and the Esselen along the Big Sur coastal area. They were an honor to visit and became a big part of a personal apex of our trip.

I am thinking of our home, the opening of roads, and the transition that everyone is feeling.

Sending big love from California to Wainiha and Haena.

I am missing you tons…xo

Alison Chuang, Haena


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