HONOLULU (KHON2) — In the ahupuaa of Honouliuli, which lies in the moku of Ewa here on Oahu, stands a street that brings our attention to something small that carries big power. We are talking about Paakai St.
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“Paakai” can easily be translated as “Salt.” If we were to break the word apart, “Paa” means “solid” and “Kai” refers to seawater.
Salt can be gathered — as done in traditional times — from the crystals that form near shorelines after pools of ocean water evaporate.
Salt was a crucial commodity that was handled with care in ancient days to keep it clean and free of dirt.
Salt was used in the early post-contact era as a tradeable item with visiting ships that needed it to preserve their food.
As salt protects food from growth of bacteria, its antiseptic properties also help with our health and well-being as well.
From abrasions to a sore throat, canker sores to bad bread to even cramps, salt has many uses aside from culinary.
In ceremony — just as it rids bacteria — salt is used for purification, cleansing the space, the people, and their prayers.
Did you know? Now you do!