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Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Two sudden deaths of close friends triggered an epiphany.  I might not have much time left myself, and, as I don't believe in any kind of afterlife, I thought I would at least expedite two challenges and an opportunity awaiting my decision.  Two are books, one dealing with my recent life experience, and the other a novel, on THE VENUS SYNDROME (Is that Venus to the right, or, someday, Planet Earth?)  The third item is to follow-through on my ultimate and final around the world journey.  

Rather than just write those books, it seemed sensible to serialize the first draft in this blog.  If anyone had any comments, those would only be useful to the eventual completion.  Also, perhaps a publisher might stumble across these chapters and express interest.  Or, more probably, one of my readers might bring this effort to the attention of an agent.

I'll start with Pearl's Ashes, for much of this is already written, with photos.  The idea for this book just popped up in my mind on 8August2009:

Today in Hilo her family celebrates Pearl's life and tomorrow we will drive to Mauna Kea to scatter her ashes. I Googled "scattering of ashes," and it appears that the entire remains do not (morally) need to be spread at one site.

I thus woke up this morning with a plan for my next year. I will keep half of Pearls' ashes in the bronze urn and have already apportioned the remainder into small packets covered with Ziploc bags. I have a choice of 25 locations and, when each is accomplished, I will write the place and date, taking a photo of each scene.

I will carefully lay each at one of three settings:
1. Pearl’s favorite spots (Mauna Kea, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, her fireball flower pot, the first yellow tree that is planted for the Pearl Foundation, into Waikiki waters at House Without a Key while Honolulu City Lights is being played just after sunset, etc.)

2. Attractions she wanted to visit but never did (Machu Pichu, African safari, Taj Mahal, etc.)

3. A few future settings she would have loved.

I will then write a book on this effort. This one will feature color photos.

There is a bestseller about the misery and squalor of Frank McCourt's youth, Angela's Ashes, made into a 1999 movie that did not do well.  McCourt won a Pulitzer Prize for this effort and I remember his name because he became closely involved with educational innovations and wrote Teacher Man.  Pearl's Ashes will be upbeat, maybe even humorous at times, and colorful, with photos.

So what about the legality of ash scattering?  There are blog sites.  "Welcome to 'Scattering Ashes'" provides information on laws, procedures and methods related to the scattering of ashes in the United States.  California, it appears, is the strictest state, and every state is different.  But, ah, what about India?  What about the Taj Majal?  I had a simple solution to these questions, which will become evident as this series continues with Part 1.

Let me end this intro with the latest news about the Pearl Foundation and the Gold Tree because one chapter will be devoted to this project.  Those trees were sent from the Big Island to the City and County of Honolulu, where they are being grown out for possible planting next year.  The Ala Wai Golf Course is in the final stage of installing an irrigation system,   No decision has been made on where these trees will be planted.  Along the Ala Wai Canal was the initial thought, but these fragile saplings would not survive the damage of errant golf balls.  Perhaps around a particular green, maybe.  This the Gold Tree:


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