Although I completely took it for granted at the time...without a doubt, I was raised on the very best food. These fresh ingredients are to blame for my demanding palate. At an early age I began to have an understanding of what quality foods taste like.
Which allowed me to develop a true passion for food. Cooking it, eating it and sharing it with friends and family. I love eating so much, that naturally I decided to start writing about it. After all great food is meant to be shared whether it's being offered at a hole-in-the wall in China Town or an elegant bistro by the beach.
In 1997 I moved to the North Shore of Oahu. Which was a dream come true for me. All of my childhood I would have dreams tempting me with images of Hawaii. Palm trees, sand and sunsets. I was obsessed. To finally move to the very place that I felt like I belonged it really was like a dream. I moved there on my own at 16 years old and it was love at first site.
And I fell in love with the people as well. Not to mention the half breed "Hawaiian Chief" it was love at first site. I had never seen a more beautiful man. And I'm not sure that I have since then either. Long dark Hawaiian hair and hazel eyes. He was spiritual and a vegetarian...and 40 years old. It was strange to everyone else but to me at the time it made sense. Half Hawaiian and half Jewish.
His Jewish father, Kamuela Price owned several north shore properties and was the mastermind behind several lawsuits against the Hawaiian government. And I was lucky enough to help him in court during several hearings. It never seemed right to me (and it is still a disgrace) that Hawaii the tourist destination that it is ... just neglecting the Native Hawaiians the way it does not to mention the public school system. Yet he was a true Native Hawaiian activist. And he won several lawsuits to the tune of millions ... for the Native Hawaiians which included his full-blooded Native Hawaiian wife Mama Loa. A woman most known for her Hawaiian beauty, a recording artist and hula dancer for Elvis among other dignitaries.
Anyways I enrolled myself into Kahuku Highschool. And it was strange going from an all white school in Seaside Oregon, to a school where EVERYONE had black hair. And lots of the students did not even wear shoes! Even slippas! But since I was in a relationship with a Hawaiian, I was in the club. It was a little strange going to school with the "Chief's" nieces but I've always been a little strange so it worked for me.
I took art class and the school newspaper. And they were the only 2 classes that interested me. So they were the only ones I went to. Especially after the moment I sold my first painting by chance and by accident for $90 - out of my home ... I knew I had struck gold. I loved painting! Art just came through my brush from somewhere else all together...like someone was painting through me. So I turned my garage into an art studio and started cashing in. Soon after I just decided I did not need school anymore. I could buy whatever art supplies from the art supply store...and I knew that was what I wanted to do with my life. I just thought to myself.. "Why should I spend all day at school when I could be at home making around $100-$200 a day."
At 18 Kamuela was in a horrific car accident and 2 weeks later died. It was heart-wrenching. Right after that I became pregnant with my daughter. Everyone told me not to have her or give her up for adoption because it would be the end of my life. And a little voice in my head said, "Your going to prove them wrong." Without question she was the most beautiful baby anyone had ever seen. She had these full lips, and beautiful hazel eyes with the longest eyelashes. I would carry her around in a little basket and little girls would try to pick her up because they thought she was a doll! All of her Aunties wanted her. Upon seeing her for the first time, Bula the Hawaiian Medicine man warned me to keep her close because people would try to take off with her. Several times strangers tried to take off with her. Scary!
My art reflected my love for her. I can't count the number of paintings that I did of her. To be continued ... at some point!
|A LITTLE ABOUT ME...|
As a child I was raised on the Pacific North West in the little town of Seaside Oregon which is nestled between the Coast and the Columbia river. Before they overdeveloped the town I could have thrown a stone into the ocean while standing in the woods.
I grew up hunting elk, wild rabbit and duck with my dad. Living on the beach made it easy to have access to fresh seafood; line caught coho salmon, trout, and crab. The Tilllamook cheese factory was only a 45 minute drive away. Fresh veggies, and stone fruits were abundant seasonally. But most of all, I loved foraging for sweet blackberries, bear-berries and salmon berries.