Logo to go here...

A very special blessing for Maiden before departure.

The Maiden crew in Hawaii had a very special evening yesterday, with Kauilani Kahalekai from Kaua’i Island, blessing Maiden with a ‘Send Off Blessing’ for a safe journey to Vancouver.

Maiden's sailors stand in front of Maiden in low sunlight
The Maiden Crew (including Maiden’s new mile builders, who will be introduced soon) stand in front of Maiden, waiting for the blessing to begin.

The ceremony began with the Ho’okupu (gifts and offerings), along with beautiful wishes and prayers to the ocean to the Na Wahine (many women) and to the Wahine O Ke Kai (women of the ocean). Kauilani Kahalekai was joined by accomplished paddlers from the Waikiki Yacht Club (girls from local schools aged between 16-19) who then called to their ancestors to come in. 

Girls from the yacht club stand in a row, with pink leis around their necks and holding green leis.
Girls from Waikiki Yacht Club ready to present the leis.

The crew were honoured to receive beautiful leis (a lei in Hawaiian culture is a wreath of flowers which is often presented upon arriving or leaving as a symbol of affection). They were extra special, as all the leis were made by CJ Perez (age 15), who was inspired when she saw Maiden arrive into Honolulu. An avid sailor already, CJ races in the 29’ers and one day hopes to sail on Maiden herself!

The green leis are placed on the heads of the Maiden crew.
The Maiden crew are presented with the Haku leis. Haku leis are made from tea leaves, and bring protection,

There were two types of leis presented to the crew. The Haku leis are worn on the head and are made with ti leaves, for protection. The second leis were placed around the neck, and are made with orchids (often given to visitors to Hawaii and also given as a thank you). And it wasn’t just the crew who received leis: Maiden also was given a Haku lei, which was placed on the bow. It was a moving sight as everyone came together, took rose petals and made a wish. These then were put in leaves, tied up and presented to Wendy. Finally, when they leave Hawaiian waters, the crew will place them in the sea to complete the ceremony. Rose petals were also thrown onto Maiden herself – and the crew!

The Maiden crew wear the Haku leis on their head, wear the pink ones around their necks and hold gifts of leaves and coconuts. Opposite, a lady holds out a very large green lei for Maiden.
The ceremony continues, and a larger lei is presented to Maiden herself.
Rose petals are scattered across Maiden, the water, dock and crew.
Rose petals showered the Maiden crew and Maiden!

There wasn’t a dry eye onboard as Kauilani performed the Ama Kua chant, which called on their ancestor guardians to protect the ladies on their journey. She also did a ‘Pono’ to support teamwork and cohesion. Everyone at the ceremony held hands and asked for forgiveness, forgave, hugged and said ‘I love you’ and a ‘Lokahi’ for everyone working together! (Lokahi is the Hawaiian word for unity.)

Everyone at the ceremony is holding hands in a long oval.
Lokahi: unity. Everyone at the ceremony held hands and asked for forgiveness, forgave, hugged and said ‘I love you’.

A special thank you to Nikki DeHeart, from the Hawaii Yacht Club, who was incredibly supportive of Maiden throughout her stay in Honolulu. She also was instrumental in the blessing ceremony organisation, so we are very grateful as it was a magical and moving end to a wonderful stopover. And who knows – we may see Nikki onboard Maiden one day!

Paddlers from the Waikiki Yacht Club, Kauilani Kahalekai, Nikki DeHeart and the Maiden crew come together for photographs at the end of the ceremony.
Paddlers from the Waikiki Yacht Club, Kauilani Kahalekai, Nikki DeHeart and the Maiden crew come together for photographs at the end of the ceremony.

Maiden is departing from Hawaii Yacht Club this Thursday between 10-11am. If you’re around, we’d love see you at the departure – come and wave goodbye or join Maiden on the water, as there are set to be a small flotilla escorting the crew out.

A beautiful sunset paints the sky behind Maiden as three crew stand onboard.
A beautiful sunset paints the sky behind Maiden.

2 comments On A very special blessing for Maiden before departure.

Leave a reply:

Your email address will not be published.

Site Footer