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This is a story my dad, who was born in a plantation camp called Ola'a 9 Miles, told me. I guess it was because it was nine miles outside of Ola'a.

He told me that in the camp, all of the kids were taken care of by everyone. If one of them misbehaved, just about anyone could and would spank the kid.

His story went like this: "We were playing chase mastah and Cousin Marco was "IT". Well, he was running after Ah Sang and they ran around this big bunch of bushes. They were gone a long time and I got tired of waiting for them so I picked up a rock and threw it at the bushes. Just when I let go of that rock, Ah Sang and cousin Marco came running around the bush again."

"It's a good thing that the rock was flat because it hit cousin Marco right between the eyes. Well, the rock cut him by the eyebrow and he started to bleed. He was bleeding so much that I thought 'Oh, no! He's going to die!' He ran home and told his mother what happened. She came after me and gave me a likkin' with her slipper. When cousin Marco's dad got home, he came after me and spanked with a belt!"

"My father got home from work and mama told him what happened. He got really mad that I had hurt my cousin so he also whipped me with a belt. Later, I felt so bad that everyone was mad at me for hurting my cousin like that I (wanting to make things better) said, "Papa, I didn't mean to hurt cousin Marco with the rock. I wasn't aiming for him, I was aiming for Ah Sang."

"Well, Papa got mad again, said, 'What? You wanted to hurt your own brother?', and gave me another spanking."

"I guess I should have kept my mouth shut."

About Author

Paul St. John was born on Oahu and now lives in Glendale, California.

I spent my childhood in Kalihi. Went to Guam and then to California where I graduated from high school. Last name used to be Wong. I'm glad you're going to put my father's story on "Hanabuddah Days". He would have been very happy to share a small part of his childhood with others. He passed away in 1983. He worked at Pearl Harbor from the 1930s until 1959 when he got transferred to Guam. After three years in Guam, we moved to "Kalafrisco" where he retired.  I went to St. Anthony's School in Kalihi until we moved to Guam (7th grade). Went to high school in South San Francisco and then lived in a few different places until I moved into Southern California in 1976. I work as a film costumer. It may sound glamorous but at the end of the day, it's nothing but dirty socks and underwear. My wife (of seventeen years) and I have five children: Elizabeth Noreen Kaleikaumaka, Patrick Damien Kalani, Paul Abraham Kealoha, Hillary Margaret Pualani, Kyrsten Marie Pi'ilani. My faddah wen tell me mo' stories from long time ago so maybe some time I can share sum mo' wit you.

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