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Notes from the Field: Preparing for Molokai (Part 1)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

4:30 AM EST

Aloha, gang.

It’s 4:30 AM here in NYC.  The birds are starting to chirp outside.  That means the sun must be starting to come up.  People will start to get up to get ready for work.  And as soon as I’ve finished writing this, I’ll be putting my head on the pillow and falling asleep.  It’s been a long–but very productive!–night.

Now that my trip back to Molokai has been booked, I’ve entered into full on “prep mode.”  And there are so many elements to it!  I started making a list earlier in the day of all the things I need to do before I head back to Hālawa Valley.  It was TOTALLY overwhelming when I looked at it.  And then I reminded myself that I work best when I concentrate on one thing at a time.  I’m not sure I believe in multi-tasking anymore.  Especially since I left corporate America.  Yes… I managed to “do” more than one thing at at time.  (Sometimes!)  The only problem was I always wondered if I could have done things better devoting my full-attention to ONE task instead of many.  Ah… but that’s the stuff for another blog post.

I decided to tackle a big item on the TO DO list tonight:  formatting a chunk of blog posts so that I can print them out and bring them to Mom and Pops Solatorio.  They don’t have access to a computer in the Hālawa Valley so they don’t have the chance to read what I write every day.  When I was there in November, I brought a few months of posts printed out and bound in little books.  I thought they might enjoy them.  And they did!  So it seemed like a good idea to bring some more!

The original idea was to format them in chunks periodically.  You see, when I prepped for the trip in November, I did it all at once and it took FULL DAYS of accessing the posts, copying them into blank documents, formatting them, printing them, binding them…. You get the picture.  I had this grand plan that I would be proactive and not wait until the last minute so that NEXT time I was heading to the Valley, it would be less painful.  Ah.. a good plan.  A wise plan.

And I didn’t follow it.

And tonight I found myself in somewhat of a panic as I sat–with blurry vision and an aching back–and put myself through the process all over again.  (Note to self:  NEXT TIME you need to learn to be proactive!  For real!  No excuses!)

But I did it.  I formatted a few months worth of text and they’re ready to print and bind.

And I’m ecstatic.

Pops knows that I’m working.  He knows I’m doing my best to honor my commitment to him and to learning and sharing and preserving.  Occasionally, I read him snippets from the blog when we talk on the phone.

But presenting him with bound booklets PROVES it.  And it affords him the opportunity to revisit the posts again and again. It allows him to see what knowledge has been assimilated into my world.  And it also shows him where I’ve got gaps in my understanding.  A win/win situation.

So, dear friends, I’m signing off for the night.  Satisfied with an honest night’s work.  And determined to be more proactive with this process so that I don’t have to do it–again!–next time!

Tomorrow is a new day.  I’ll look at another item on the TO DO list.  Prep will continue!

The birds are getting noisier. That’s my cue to try to catch some ZZZZs.

Snoring Already,

Jason

2 Responses to “Notes from the Field: Preparing for Molokai (Part 1)”

  1. jeanie says:

    I love that you are giving them the gift of a book of your writing. And being willing to show Pops your work, gaps and all. How are you binding it?

  2. Jason Poole says:

    HI, Ms. Jeanie!
    I’m using a friend’s “binding machine” in her office. Super easy and simple. The humidity in the Valley makes it difficult for glues to last. I’ve seem some of his books starting to fall apart as the glue breaks down. I’m using a metal spiral binding that has proven to hold up well. At least so far–Ha!

    Mahalo for the encouragement. Pops is my teacher, but also my family. I have to be willing to let him see me as I am–warts (and gaps in knowledge) and all. It’s good.