Watching Honolulu Hale can make a cynic out of oneself. But, I remind myself, there are lots of good and decent individuals with aloha inside and outside of Honolulu Hale.
Let me share a recent simple story of aloha at Honolulu Hale since Civil Beat now lives there.
My left front tire suddenly blew up as I was driving along South King Street in front of Honolulu Hale. I had come from Kahuku to Honolulu. I’m grateful it happened there and not on the freeway. I don’t know why the tire would burst except that it may have collected big nails from a construction site I had visited earlier. It was so loud and so sudden. It scared the heck out of me. I was lucky I was driving on the far left lane of this busy street. I quickly cruised to a stop on a parking space in front of Honolulu Hale.
There were several men by a car parked outside the steps of Honolulu Hale by the mayor’s parking space. They must have heard the loud tire pop. They instinctively came running towards my car. With big smiles, they told me they would take care of it. They took my tire out and replaced it with the spare. They did everything for me. Cheerfully and without hesitation.
As I stood and watched, I could see the children crying in their car. The women there must have tried to explain patience while they contained the children inside their car.
These men from Waianae instinctively came running to help a stranger in need. When I offered them the only $100 bill I had in my purse, they wouldn’t take it. They were happy I was safe and happy to lend a helping hand. I finally insisted they buy a treat for the crying children and they relented.
I’m grateful there are still people who will help strangers without hesitation, thought of compensation or self-interest.
Choon James served on the Koolauloa Sustainable Communities Planning Advisory Committee. She was a past President of the BYU-Hawaii Alumni Association, a past board member of the Laie Community Association and a past President of the Laie Point Association. She has been a real estate broker for over 25 years.