This popped up on my memory from a Hawaii group.
Back in the 80s the Salvation Army used to do weddings here. They were all Japanese tourist who flew to Oahu for the wedding and honeymoon. It was much cheaper than a wedding in Japan.
The bride would rent her dress and the weddings were every hour on the hour five days a week.
One day the wedding soloist got sick and someone knew someone who knew someone and I got a call to see if I could sing for a week. As luck would have it I was on vacation but not leaving the island. I asked if I could bring my toddler and set up a play area and they said yes. They were desperate.
I had to wear a muumuu so I chose my brightest one, loaded the car seat into the 65 Mustang and headed to the Waioli Tea Room.
My job was to be the maid of honor and straighten the bride’s veil and train and get her all settled. Then I’d go to the front of the chapel and sing one song. After the vows I’d sing a second one and then the organist would a song and they walk together as husband and wife and into the limo and away they’d go.
The couple could choose one song, they had religious and secular love songs, but the second song was always the Hawaiian Wedding Song.
That turned out to be a lucrative gig because there were 6 or 7 weddings a day ago and I got $100 per wedding and it was cash money. Because I had a job I couldn’t do extra days except holidays like Presidents Day and other times. But one or two weeks a year I was a wedding singer to Japanese couples. That’s how I bought all the new appliances for our house on year.
The Salvation Army closed the tea room and after that my friend Brian opened a restaurant here and kept the name. I went to many bridal and wedding showers there and any friend from the mainland who came to visit always got lunch or breakfast there. I knew Brian from the Waikiki Beach Chaplaincy where I sang a could of times a month.
When Brian closed the restaurant they had a sale of selected items. I bought this container and I use it for flour. I just filled it today after making apple, cranberry, pecan bread.
I love having a piece of the tea room in my kitchen in Wisconsin. I have so many fond memories of Manoa and the Waioli Tea Room.
One day that little boy of mine who would sit in a corner playing nicely with toys while mommy sang for Japanese couples has no idea about why I keep my flour in a canister that doesn’t match the others I have. When he or his kids are deciding what to do with Mom’s junk, I hope one of them somehow senses the value and history of this metal canister with the ill-fitting top.
I have a lot of stuff but my stuff is all about my memories and my life lived in different places. Each item is a piece of my story.