Thursday, April 22, 2010


I received a beautiful Tuberose, Ti leaf and Orchid Lei today.

Have you ever smelled tuberose before? It is absolutely intoxicating.......

Tuberose was the very first memory I had of Hawaii.
It was January 1983....the week Kilauea started erupting.
This was not my first trip to the islands. However, it was the first one that I vividly remember. This was the trip that made me want to move here. I was 6. I would only have to wait 16 more years to do so.

I remember flying "World" Airlines out of San Francisco with my mother and younger sister....I remember the 5 hour flight feeling like 24. I remember thinking how excited I was to be going to a place where shells littered the beaches.
I remember the bouncy approach into Honolulu International. I remember the azure waters just off Waikiki Beach and a hotel with a large rainbow on the facade. I remember seeing a large harbor and craggy cloud filled mountains all around us.....
I remember stepping out of the large jet plane and breathing in my first ever wave of humidity.  I remember gingerly walking down the stairs in the intense late afternoon sun and then heading towards the open aired terminal. And then I remember smelling the unmistakable tuberose......

My Auntie ( my mother's close friend ) then placed a lush solid white lei around my neck. She called me Maka Nui Lani ( Big Eyes from Heaven ). I had never seen a real lei before, only rainbow fabric ones at parties......and I had never smelled anything quite like the "real deal" either. It was absolutely mesmerizing.

 To me.....the tuberose was and always will be the fragrance of Hawai'i......



  1. I know EXACTLY what you mean. Tuberose is the smell of Hawai'i! I long for that whiff you get the moment you step outside the airport. I can't wait to be there again!

  2. The hotel with the rainbow painted on it was the Ilikai. I used to work there with Uncle Rudy and the rest of the Aliis. We recorded in the Canoe House in the lobby. What a great time that was for me. That's when I fell in love with Hawaii too.