THE OLD FARMING MEN
In times long ago, there lived in Kapalilua, South Kona, Hawaii, four old men; two of them were farmers and the other two were fishermen; the farmers would always supply the fishermen with their vegetable foods, and so too the fishermen would provide for the farmers, and so they shared for a long time.
One day when the fishermen were returning and almost ready to land, they saw the farmers coming down to the plains with a basket of sweet potato; one fisherman said to the other, there are those farmers who gorge on fish. It would be good if we acted cunningly to those old farmers so that those old men don’t get our fish.
So let’s hide the fish under the fish trap [ie] and place the leftover bait [poo maunu] on top, and when they approach the canoe, we’ll say, “O Farmers, we’ve got a problem, we’ve no fish, only the leftover bait;” the two fishermen decided to carry out this treacherous idea.
When they got to the beach, there stood the elderly farmers. The fishermen said in a smooth [nalali ?] voice, “O Farmers, we’ve got a problem, there’s no fish on this canoe, we’ve just turned back for today, with just the leftover bait for this day;” the fishermen opened the cover of the trap [hinai] and said to the farmers, “this is the remaining bait, and so it that,” and so forth, and the farmers were left disappointed.
It was a rule for fishermen not to give away the leftover bait to others; it was something that the fishermen ate. And so that day, the farmers went without fish and ate only some taro [kuala] without any fish, while the fishermen had their vegetable food and fish as they laughed; so it went the next day; the farmers were left without fish because of the actions of the fishermen.
On another day, while the farmers were headed up to their fields, they arrived at a resting point where they took a break, and one said to the other, “Hey, listen to this, we are being troubled by the fishermen.” “Yes, the fishermen are troublesome.”
“Today, let us act wisely; let’s go upland for sweet potato for us to eat, and when we descend, let’s stick in the vines growing from broken pieces of sweet potato [ohulu] and when we get to the shore, and the fishermen return, let’s say, ‘You fishermen have a problem; we only have broken bits of potato [ku-oo] to eat;’ then they’ll eat their fish without vegetable, and we’ll have our vegetable without fish; we will not die, it is they that will die.”
The two of them went into the uplands and got their food, and commenced breaking and crumbling up the uala; they then walked down and when they came to the harbor where the fishermen came ashore, they landed and said, “You two are in a bind again, O Farmers; we only have leftover bait.” The Farmers replied, “Yeah, should you two fishermen have nothing, that is a problem for us, and we have nothing.”
Then, the old farmers said, “That goes for us as well, we kept searching our patch, and there was no whole potatoes, just pieces. So you fishermen are in trouble, there are only pieces;” showing them, “Look, these are only pieces, those are pieces,” and so forth.
So the fishermen went home and ate their fish without vegetable, and the farmers ate their vegetable without fish, but the farmers were satisfied.
That night, the fishermen went fishing for aweoweo, and while they fished, one said to the other, “We are being troubled by the farmers; it is certain that we cannot live if we just have fish to eat;” the other agreed, “Yes, those old men are so crafty, yes, they are so clever.”
“So the right thing for us to do is to fish, and when we’re done, we come back and kill those old men.”
The place these fishermen were talking was outside of Olelomoana, and while these old fishermen were talking, the plot of the fishermen was heard by the farmers in the upland. At that, the farmers crawled that night from Olelomoana until Kolo, and that is why those places are called Olelomoana [Ocean Talking] and Kolo [Crawl], being that there was talking at Olelomoana and there was crawling to Kolo.
Kapalilua was the only name before, but because of these old men, those places are named these names until this day, and the Honorable W. C. Achi is the owner of those amazing land sections [Ahupuaa]. And so it is said that the fishermen were troubled by the farmers because of the mischief they did to the other.
Kailua Baka Ona
(Lahui Hawaii, 9/16/1899, p. 2)
Ka Lahui Hawaii, Buke 1, Helu 34, Aoao 2. Sepatemaba 16, 1899.