Aloha mai no, aloha aku;
o ka huhu ka mea e ola `ole ai.
When love is given, love should be returned;
anger is the thing that gives no life.
Aloha! My name is Shelly Bennett. I moved to Honolulu, Hawaii on the beautiful island of Oahu about a week ago with my husband Mike Spencer. This is the first time I’ve ever lived farther than 30 minutes from the city of Detroit. Detroit is in my blood. So much so that my very first blog that I started in 2010 was called “Little Miss Detroit.” I guess you could say that this blog could be called “Little Miss Detroit Moves to Hawaii.” But I’m not calling it that and I’ll tell you why…
Mike and I moved here so that he can do some research related to health. He’s done a lot of work with the African American and Latino populations in Detroit around diabetes and he’s hoping to do some similar work with the Native Hawaiian population now. Sadly, all of those populations have a much higher incidence of diabetes. But the difference with Native Hawaiians is that there are far fewer people of Native Hawaiian decent and so that means there is less funding and less people looking to study that population.
Mike was born here. Many of his ancestors were born here going back as far as anyone in his family can recount. His father believed that their line were ancient royalty before the time of King Kamehameha The Great and that they had to go into hiding on the island of Maui for a time after being conquered. I like that story so I’m going with it. Personally, I believe that Mike’s ancestors are calling him back here. I think they want him to do some work towards restoring pono to these lands (more on pono later). I am proud to be here on this journey with him and I’m looking forward to sharing our adventures with all of you.