ʻAla

1. vs. Fragrant, sweet-smelling, perfumed; fragrance, perfume (preceded by ke). Fig., esteemed chiefly. Mea ʻala, ointment, perfume. Ke ʻala kūpaoa, a strong heady fragrance. Ke ʻala punia, a fragrance so strong that it causes dizziness. Cf. ʻaʻala. hō.ʻala To perfume. (PNP kala.)

Fragrant, sweet-smelling. Mmmmm.  Sweet pīkake lei. ʻAwapuhi melemele or yellow ginger. Pakalana beauty. Whatever your favorite scented flower is…

Think of those sweet scents today as Hawaiʻi celebrates the life of Leinaʻala Kalama Heine. Tūtū, Mom, kumu hula, Hawaiian practitioner, supporter, beach going Waikīkī Surf Club enthusiast, and if you know ʻAla you know this list goes on. And on.

I remember ʻAla from as far back as when I was a student at Kamehameha. She started her hālau, Nā Pualei o Likolehua way back then and many of my friends danced for her. And her comical at times, elegant at times hula as she showcased with the Brothers Cazimero. She was the third brother! She was guest speaker at many workshops and lectures I attended. She continued to expand her own knowledge by attending Papakū Makawalu workshops. Always the teacher. Always the student.

She was there when my own kumu hula, Mililani Allen, was transitioning to her next life and helped to ensure that the hālau would continue by preparing an ʻuniki for my hula sister, Makalapua Bernard. She attended my ʻuniki to kumu hula with Hālau Mohala ʻIlima. I will always be grateful to my kumu and friend, Māpuana, for inviting ʻAla to be part of our ʻuniki celebration. She gifted each of us with a beautiful lei maile and her hug, I will never forget.

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pc: Kīhei de Silva

Mahalo, e ʻAla, no ka hoʻomālamalama ʻana mai i ko Hawaiʻi. Mahalo i ke kūpaʻa me ke kākoʻo no nā mea Hawaiʻi he kini ka nui, no ka hula, no ka mālama iā Maunakea, ka hoe waʻa a pēlā aku. Aloha nui ʻia ʻoe.

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