“My job on Hōkūleʻa has always been as documenter. I was always taking notes and writing stories. At the end, I had so much material and people had shared with me their manaʻo. And I realized that the last thing I had to do, as documenter, was to finish this book and get it out so other people could hear the voices of the canoe.” says book author Sam Low.
An event at ʻImiloa was held in honor of his finsihed product, Hawaiki Rising, where excited community members joined in to hear the intimate approach Sam took in writing his book.
“Part of what I was trying to do with this book, was to capture their voices, capture their manaʻo, their knowledge so that as we voyage into the future, we can look back into our past and take strength from these, first people, that actually made the first voyages.” says Sam.
“It’s an amazing opportunity to be able to reference them to this account of the early days but then it takes you to a couple different voyages and it’s from the eyes of each crewmember themselves. It’s really awesome because for the crew members, nowadays that weren’t alive during the 70s, we do get to know the original crew members, the accounts, the stories of how the voyage first started.” says crewmember Jenna Ishii.
“So, it’s about our teachers. It’s about the early time, and the early times were hard. And we’re grateful for that, we have to have our tools for our children to be able to access, to remember…don’t forget the stories.” says Pwo Navigator, Nainoa Thompson.
There are currently 3,000 copies of Hawaiki Rising, and they are only being sold in the State of Hawaiʻi for the time being. The purpose is to make sure that the Hawaiian community is pono with this product before sharing it with the rest of the world.
“I hope it will take the message of our manaʻo, our Hawaiian, genuine feeling about the ocean, feeling for this ʻāina and bring it throughout the world.” says Sam.
For more information on the book Hawaiki Rising, visit Sam Low’s website.