February 27, 2001 The Malasada Day
I’m not Catholic, nor am I Portuguese, but since I live in Hawaii, I know about Malasada Day.
In other parts of the world, its known as Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras. It is the day before Ash Wednesday, the day before Lent begins in the Catholic calendar. Lent is a time to remember Jesus’ suffering and death, and discipline and self-denial. Moses was said to have fasted for forty days on Mount Sinai, Elijah traveled for forty days on the way to the mountain of God, and Lord Jesus fasted and faced temptation for forty days in the wilderness, and so Lent is still observed for forty days today.
Many people today choose a temptation that they otherwise can’t live without, and resist it during Lent. One of my friends is abstaining from cigarette smoking. Another is resisting chocolates. In any case, before these people begin the Lenten fast, on Fat Tuesday, they usually celebrate. New Orleans was made popular for their elaborate Mardi Gras festivals. These celebrations seem to heighten the contrast between regular time and Lent, and thus deepen the spiritual lessons taught by Lent. However, in many instances, celebrations tend to get out of hand, and become inappropriate.
Hawaii does not have a huge Mardi Gras celebration like New Orleans, but malasadas are a big seller on the day before Lent. My friend Sharolyn explained to me that it’s a Portuguese custom to eat the sweet and sugary malasada, and the tradition has been in her family for years. Unlike most people who line up at their favorite malasada store from before the sun rises, Sharolyn’s grandma spend the entire day making the popular doughnut for her family to enjoy. I’m sure at this very moment, Sharolyn is happily munching away on her grandma’s homemade malasadas!
Things like this remind me of the popular catch phrase, “Lucky you live Hawaii.” Nowhere else in the world would I have the kinds of experiences and cultural awareness that I get here.
|Susan Sensei’s English Lesson #67（スーザン先生の英語講座）
For two years I taught English in Japan, and was “スーザン先生” to my students in Ikaho town, Gunma Prefecture. I will try and introduce new words and phrases for the Japanese visitor to Hawaii. Here is this week’s situation:
You want to try some of Hawaii’s desserts. Usually, when you want to buy a lot of something, you purchase them by the dozen (12’s). For example,
“May I have a dozen（ half a dozen ）malasadas?
Or, if you’d like a selection of desserts, you can say,
“I’d like one long john, one chocolate cake donut“.
|Loco Girl’s Profile（ロコ・ガールのプロフィール） Born in Hilo, I grew up going fishing with Dad, shopping with Mom, and trying to be a good “big sister” to a younger sister and brother. A Waiakea High School and the University of Hawaii at Manoa alumni, I taught English in Japan for two years on the JET Program. I love doing a lot of things-shopping, reading, lettering, making jewelry & crafts, watching Friends-and that’s just the start of my list! I like being busy, and am active with the JET Alumni Association (JETAA) and the Honolulu Junior Japanese Chamber of Commerce (HJJCC.) My family and friends are, of course, very important to me, and are why I live a very typical, happy, local-style life in Hawaii and will never leave!|