The day dawned with the kind of weather that tourists fly to Hawaii for, paying thousands of dollars to enjoy the balmy breezes and the brilliant sunshine. In short, it was a perfect day for the Punahou School Alumni Luau.
The Luau was held on Middle Field this year; a first in my experience. The location was perfect. Without buildings or foliage to block their path, the tradewinds wafted pleasantly as classmates conversed ‘neath the massive monkeypod beside calm lily pond waters.
But our class picture on the steps of Pauahi came first. Patiently gathered for the “smile!” we had several false alarms as first Mark Yamane then Mike Mikasa and others rushed to beat the camera snap. Cries of “you buy the drinks!” were often heard as late comers slipped into the pose just in time to hear the photographer say, “Keep your eyes open now!”
The Luau challenge was next. For those of you who have not been to one it’s a four step process: #1: Buy your drink scrip and go pick up your beverage of choice at the bar tent. #2: Check out the Punahou Alumni Association and other tents for logo items etc. If you’re not coming back to Hawaii for a while, buy plenty! #3: Get in the loooooong line to pick up your plate of food. Fortunately, because everything is pre-portioned, the line goes fast. #4: Slip into the luau tent, find your class table, squeeze in, and eat!
In between, rack your brain when someone smiles and begins talking familiarly to you (we were in first grade together?), wonder why you don’t recognize someone at all (oops! it’s a spouse!), and try to remember what classes were held in that building over there (no wonder! they built it in ’96–now I feel better!). It’s a mental workout that’ll keep dementia at bay.
Ann Mesrobian and I walked to the Sterling Photography table to buy a class picture. No luck. They were sold out. I’d have to have a copy mailed to me. Who knew that this would be such a popular souvenier item!
There were offers of drinks at the Outrigger Club but the hour was late. The picnic loomed early the next morning and the frenetic reunion pace was beginning to wear on me. Declining the offer, I caught a ride with Babs Miyano-Young and headed back up the hill. Sleep would come easy that night.
Look for more comments regarding Luau events and pictures of many class members in attendance at the Punahou ’74 Flickr photostream.