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March 2009

From the Editor...

 

Rochelle delaCruz

from the editor…

Time to Go

I knew this day would come; I just didn’t know when. In 2003 when we started planning da pepa, I always said such a project would require serious effort and commitment. I pledged at least five years, because that is the kind of time needed for something of this scope.

So here we are at the end of five years. I didn’t plan to be wrapping it up with the 60th issue, but over the past few months, I’ve been giving it a lot of thought. My first reasons are personal: With grandchildren aged 4 and 6 in Ohio, and a 92-year-old mother in Hilo, I need more free time to make my way east and west. While I could (and have) worked on the paper while on the East Coast and in Hawai`i, it followed me around as I played. And all that we did had to be planned around that important event at the end of each month: getting the paper in to the printer. This we could do electronically, but then someone had to be here to physically pick it up. Luckily Roy, my devoted spouse took charge of distribution and made sure he was always here for delivery, but this also restricted his time.

Then there’s my full-time teaching job at the college. While I haven’t set a date for retirement, at my age it’ll be sooner rather than later. And deep budget cuts coming from the state are forcing all of us to think about what the future holds. But along with retirement will come the move back to Hawai`i, which I have been regularly threatening to do in my columns here. Yes, I am going back and hope others of you will also consider it. While there are some things we can do to help our Islands from up here in the Pacific Northwest, I believe we have to be there on Hawaiian soil to truly be of use. But I need to clear my table to figure out how to do all of this.

Finally, I would be lying if I said that the tanking economy wasn’t a factor. In these last months, we watched ads dry up, but also businesses where we used to drop off the newspaper have disappeared. I always thought maybe we could pass this paper on to someone, but with all of us facing uncertain times, asking anyone to take on what is mostly a volunteer effort, doesn’t feel right.

So that brings us to the newspaper. I LOVE dis pepa! My one regret is that we didn’t go color sooner, but the five years here have been the best. Working with “the guys” has not only been great times but oh so easy because of our shared vision and commitment. Hearing from all of you readers has also been hugely gratifying. There are good writers and terrific stories out there in the Hawai`i community and we hope you will continue to tell them.

Northwest Hawai`i Times has been not just good fun but a good paper because so many jumped in the canoe and pulled together. Whatever it is we were called to do, we did with Aloha. And that is how this newspaper worked.

It was a great run but for me, time to hele on. See you back in the Islands. ~RdC

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