Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Jun 30, 2022

Irene 2022

 Irene J. Foster visited me two days ago to let me know that a particular person would come forward and own up to what she wanted me to say.

Jun 29, 2022

Adolpho 2022

He smelled like VO5 most times, but he also had that Vitalis aroma about him.

Jun 28, 2022

Sweat 2022

Love and hate is the way I'd describe my sophomore year in high school.

Jun 27, 2022

Jun 26, 2022

Ao Holo'oko'a 2022

"In life, you should hope that you can move seamlessly from one moment to the next without pause or flaw in the process.

Jun 24, 2022

Wedding 2022

 Wedding days are always filled with tension, panic, and pressure, just like at a funeral.

Jun 23, 2022

Dance 2022

She was so caught up in her conversation while she and her business partner took a shortcut through the Kawaiahaʻo church graveyard that she did not notice she had been walking over more than a few graves.

Jun 22, 2022

Change 2022

Twenty three years ago my friends and I were hiking the Aiea loop trail at precisely nine in the morning which is right about when the time when the place is still quiet and unbothered by tourists and the like.

Jun 21, 2022

Fisherman 2022

 My brother and I were home on Kauai, which we didn't get to do often.

Jun 20, 2022

Ron 2022

Believing this story is still difficult for me, even though I am a person who has had a lifelong experience with mysterious and strange things.

Jun 19, 2022

Take 2022

John Kenai, his wife Alyssa, and their daughter Kylie became houseless when their landlord decided to sell the house at the last minute.

Jun 18, 2022

Hoʻokō 2022 3


"Jedidiah could not come up with the money to pay for passage back to the east coast to retrieve his son and the daughter of the aliʻi ʻai moku," the museum curator said.

Jun 17, 2022

Ho'okō 2022 2

 "This is not good, Jedidiah," Herman smiled as he spoke with his long-time friend so as not to give a hint of their conversation to the Hawaiian chief.

Jun 16, 2022

Ho'okō 2022 1

Jedidiah Corliss, by way of circumstance, and not by the hand of God as he would later say it was, but by happenstance, saved the life of the only child of the Aliʻi ʻai moku of Lihuʻe who was near to falling off a sheer cliff to the rocks below.

Jun 15, 2022

Guilt 2022

 Another story about another house with a strange unsolved history in urban Honolulu.

Jun 14, 2022

Hālua 2022

Truth. The more aquiline your features and skin tone, the more you are admired and accepted.

Jun 13, 2022

Leimaliko 2022

Hoʻoleiʻupena is the act of casting out the fishing net as you would a lei around the shoulders of a beloved person.

Jun 12, 2022

Jun 11, 2022

Moonlight 2022

No one had ever done a moonlight parade through Waikīkī. A starlight parade, yes, but not one by the full moon's light.

Jun 10, 2022

Under 2022

Missing was one sock which the partner to the only unique pair of socks I ever owned from Scotland.

Jun 9, 2022

Ka'ahele 2022

This case was not part of my wheelhouse, so to speak, so I did not understand why my presence was required in the beginning.

Jun 8, 2022

Menehune Mū 2022

 "Oh, they left long, long ago," Aunty Meng reminisced. "The Menehune men started marrying Hawaiian women, and the Menehune queen did not like that.

Jun 6, 2022

Leiʻala 2022

A Vietnam veteran remembers the day he stepped off the plane at the old Honolulu airport. Of all places, the least location he expected to see protesters against the war was at home, at the airport. He said the air went out of him as if surviving the war in service to his country was pointless. He intimated that he felt stuck, as if there were no way to exit the airport without being confronted by one person or a group of people who were against the war. "Are you alright young man? You look troubled?" An old Hawaiian woman stood there with a ginger lei in her hand. "Where is your family? How come they're not here to greet you?"

"I'm early," the young version of himself replied. "I was looking for a payphone to call home and let my parents know I'm here."

"It must have been such a long flight," the old Hawaiian woman said as she draped her ginger lei around his shoulders. "After you call your folks, you should sit down and relax. It must have been a very long flight home, no?"

The veteran told me that he and the old Hawaiian woman sat and talked until it was time to head out to the sidewalk where his family would pick him up. "We talked about what high school I went to, the people I knew, and my mother's maiden name. Then, before I knew it, it was time go. I thanked that kupuna, and she gave me a big hug.

"Welcome home, Kawika," she said. "Aloha!" The old Hawaiian woman walked away, heading toward the gates where a group came through the terminal.

"Tūtū!" The veteran called out. "I didnʻt get your name?"

"Leiʻala," she smiled and went about her way.

"When my parents picked me up, we hugged and cried, and I finally got myself and my bags in the car; we were on the way home, and my mother noticed my ginger lei and asked me where I got the lei. I told her it was given to me by an old Hawaiian woman at the airport and that she sat with me until it was time go,"

"Did you get her name?" My mother asked.

"Leiʻala," I replied. My dadʻs station wagon came to a screeching halt. He turned around and gave me a strange look before pulling off the road.

"Leiʻala?" My dad questioned. "Are you sure?"

"Yes, dad," I replied. "Why?"

"Leiʻala was my great-grandmother," my father sat there with tears welling up. "She was hardly seen without a ginger lei; it was her favorite. Thatʻs why she was named Leiʻalaikeʻawapuhi, The fragrant ginger lei. She was welcoming you home, son."

"I was shocked, but my parents sat there for a few more minutes, crying, and knowing that with the trouble and worry I experienced at the airport, my great, great, tūtū lady came and kept me safe until it was time to go home," he shared. "True story, true story."


17A Productions Presents

Lopaka Kapanui at Hawaii Theatre

A LIVE and IN-PERSON storytelling concert at the historic Hawaii Theatre. This master storyteller is one of Hawaii’s most popular teller of tales and has been in the business of scaring people for more than 20 years. Lopaka is terrifically skilled at provoking that sudden chill going down one’s back or causing the small hairs on your arms to stand up. Chicken skin is what we call it in Hawai‘i. Others might refer to it as chills or goosebumps. Sharing real accounts of Hawaii’s supernatural culture, Lopaka often leaves audience members questioning the darkness on their drive home and anxiously leaving the light on at bedtime.


Jun 5, 2022

Pushed 2022

 No longer the Sears at the mall on the Windward side of the island, it stands empty and stark.

Jun 4, 2022

Choked 2022

Choking, struggling for air, the eyes wide, the lips turning blue and foaming at the mouth.

Jun 3, 2022

Knocks 2022

 Soft and then loud but gradually like a crescendo in a music piece.

Jun 2, 2022

Weird 2022

Looking away would have made me just as guilty as the person committing the heinous act.

Jun 1, 2022

Story 2022

 What I heard interested my attention for less than half the time it was happening because I was busy doodling on my phone.