Everyone gets up early in Kihei (I may be generalizing a little, but not much), which explains why I wasn’t surprised to see South Kihei Rd lined up with a crowd by the time the parade got under way, at 9:00am. Most favoured the south side of the road, taking advantage of the shade afforded by the trees and buildings, as the early morning sun already warmed things up.
Everybody loves a parade! Colourful performers, impressive floats, dignitaries and pageant winners, boats, dogs, roller skaters, mermaids and even a whale! The music of pipe bands, drums and marching bands imparts their rhythm to the parade. The Whale Day Parade was no exception. The Isle of Maui Pipe Band led the parade; Seabury Hall Middle School Marching Band played on in the middle of the pack; Chestermere High School Concert & Jazz Band—from Alberta, Canada of all places!—brought up the rear.
But one distinctive sound could be heard wherever you stood along the parade; its magic made you tap your feet. As the sound drew nearer, bodies began to dance under its spell. The echoes of the drums reverberated on the structures along the way. Seated on the sides of a pick-up box, the drummers beat their drums with abandon, hands moving quicker than the eye could see, hypnotizing those spectators brave enough to watch without blinking. Their smiles seemed to outshine the sun, their energy communicated to everyone along the way. They were Drum & Dance of Passion. Groove. Sound waves of Happiness.