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Tag: Mau Piailug

YOUR TURN TO TRY

YOUR TURN TO TRY

Here’s another way of Un-Seeing, one involving time and space.

Google what “Hawaiian time” means and you will probably get some variation of “late.” Sometimes the definition comes with a fifteen-minute grace-period added and, often, there’s a bit of humor-filled tolerance included.

As more than one entry so delicately puts it, we island people are afflicted by a “relaxed indifference to precise scheduling.”  Uh-huh.

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NAVIGATOR MINDSET

NAVIGATOR MINDSET

In his book ISLAND WORLD:  A History of Hawaii and the United States, Gary Y. Okihiro talked to master navigator Mau Piailug, the man who taught the Hawaiians how to navigate the Hokule’a, the Hawaiian sailing canoe in the manner of their ancestors.

Piailug talked about having a star compass in his head with Polaris pointing north and the Southern Cross south.  The navigator paid attention to the rising of certain stars (which indicated east) and others setting (which showed west).  Locating the canoe’s position on the open sea depended on his estimates of the canoe’s speed and direction.

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