Aloha from Honolulu

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I’m here in Honolulu to teach a workshop for the Ebert Young Writers Program for the Arts, a part of the Hawaii International Film Festival.

I’ve never been to Hawaii so it’s already been a pleasure. I spent an hour on the beach last night, a block away from my hotel, watching the sun set. I won’t have much time for anything outside of the film festival, but I will be taking a field trip to the U.S.S. Arizona (the memorial funded by Elvis, by the way, from a concert he gave in 1961).

It’s an honor to be here, and to be a part of helping young writers delve into their passion in a deep and conscious way, from wherever they stand in their lives, whatever their perspective and interests. There isn’t just one “way in” to film. That’s one of the best parts of Art. I really look forward to meeting the students and to whatever experience we’re about to have.

Also there’s all of THIS. I mean, I would have been honored to be a part of this if it were being held in Baltimore or St. Paul or Detroit. But to have it be here, a place I’ve never been, is extra special.

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Listen, just because I’m here on a Movie Mission doesn’t mean I have no other interests. I am a Red Sox fan from birth, but along with that comes a spiritual and emotional connection to the Cubs and to Cubs fans. I went down into the lobby to watch the game (I was also trying to acclimate to Hawaii time. I was ready for bed at 6 p.m. and had to force myself to stay up.) MY GOD that game. Of course it had to be that level a cliffhanger. I felt that way in 2004. “Of course. We are going to have to fight tooth and nail every single second for this win. NOTHING will come easy.” That game had the same dramatic flair and nail-biting tension. My phone blew up with texts from Chicago friends. I could hear screams erupt from different spots around the lobby and I myself was surrounded by screaming maniacs. I felt right at home. Congratulations to the Cubs, to Cubs fans, who have been waiting a long … long … time … GENERATIONS … for this. And WHAT a game.

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Dawn view from my balcony. I have tremendous fear of heights, and it “presents” like Jimmy Stewart in “Vertigo” but I am trying to force myself to work through it so I can enjoy the balcony. So far it’s not working, but I’ll keep trying.

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8 Responses to Aloha from Honolulu

  1. Stevie says:

    Wow, this is so great! Enjoy your time there, Red! xxx

  2. Dining tip: Hua Tree Lanai, at the south end of Kalakaua Avenue. Quiet, sublime, and if you’re lucky a table 20 yards from shore as the sun goes down.

  3. Dg says:

    Enjoy… and wear sunscreen.

    • sheila says:

      As a freckled and pale-white person – I hear you on the sunscreen and I am all set! So far I have spent most of my time indoors at the film festival but Saturday is Pearl Harbor Day and I want to do my best to take a field trip to the North Shore. May not happen but this is the goal. So I’ll be all stocked up with sunscreen for that day for sure.

  4. JOHN S DOHERTY says:

    Longtime reader, Sheila, big-time fan.
    For some reason, I am soooo happy you are in Hawaii. Please enjoy the beauty and be proud of the reason you’re there (you’re a teacher, now! An elder!).
    Can’t wait to see some pictures and written impression from the islands.

    Jdoherty

    • sheila says:

      Me?? An elder? Ha! Yeah, I can own that!

      Thank you, John – of course I know who you are – and I so appreciate it.

      Hawaii is stunning. And I love the film festival environment – so much excitement and enthusiasm and creativity.

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