May 18th, 2009
Two of the most common questions you get asked - especially in Hawaii - are:
- Wea/Wat year you wen grad?
- Wea you from?
When talking about "grad" - I can say with almost a 100% certainty in Hawaii - we're talking about high school while on da mainland, it refers to your college. I honestly don't know how or why it's so different but can only assume that since Hawaii is a tight knit island and we have only two main colleges, University of Hawaii and Hawaii Pacific University that knowing what high school you graduated from would be more interesting.
Now 'wea you from' is one question that gets me a bit.... discombobulated.
My early years I lived in town but went to Salt Lake Elementary so I got dropped off at school but caught the bus back to town (1st & 2nd grade). Then in 3rd and 4th grade, I lived in Sand Island and the years prior and after I moved about all parts of Salt Lake.
In high school, even though I moved to Aiea, I still went to Moanalua.
After high school I moved back to Salt Lake and luck would have it that during the housing boom in 2005, I was able to purchase a home in Pearl City.... and been here ever since.
So when asked, 'wea you from?, I don't know wat answer to give.' Are they asking where I live now or where I grew up and have my roots in? I'll always consider myself a Salt Lake boy cause while growing up there, it actually helped define who I am now. Back in da day, we had a lot of independence - as evident in me catching The Bus at 6 years old with my brother - but it was a lot about making life choices for yourself at such a young age and back then we didn't have all the "resistance" programs or the technological advances they have now.
Even with the Country Club Plaza boom (middle to upper income families), the entire area is actually divided by a single road, Ala Napunani Street. Everything on da Ewa side of da road is uh..... da "fun" side and it really is two separate communities divided by a single road separating economic class . Trust me, I know.
I have friends on both sides of the "street" back then and now and it was a very humbling and aspiring childhood to know what you have and what you don't have and what you dream to have.
Growing up was tough but truth be told, I wouldn't trade it for anything.
So wea/wat year you wen grad? (no need say year if you was da first graduating class) 😛 😆
And wea you from? Does your childhood community define you?
I wen grad from Moanalua High and I grew up in Salt Lake but live in Pearl City now. 😀
C'mon and Represent!