I’ve seen Kauai through my own eyes for over forty years but my humorous novel, The SCAM, will be seen through the eyes of a character I love and created, Karen Holt, she and her whole clan, in the hip 60’s. This column-you call it a blog-will take us back and bring us forward to today.

Today, driving to metropolitan Lihue, I see more cars than there were on the island when I arrived.

My husband, Bill,  was the Engineering Department Head for McBryde Sugar, a wholly owned subsidiary of Alexander and Baldwin, Big Five, lots of land and MATSON navigation; sugar was King then, actually the managers were Kings and department heads and their wives Lords and Ladies of the land. It was a wonderful life. We lived in some beautiful homes, one on the Spouting Horn Road-millionaire’s row-overlooking Kukuiula Harbor, where we kept our boat, and across the street from land we leased where we kept our horses. Our last abode, a lava rock  mansion up the Alexander Dam Road where, behind us all the way to Hanalei, there was no other habitation, was delightfully secluded.  Up there I rode my leopard appoloosa, Beauregard, followed by the dogs and my  black American Show Shetland stallion Flash’s Fanfare Sensation. Flashy darted along, no halter, no line, a free soul who, at the ripe old age of 40, sometimes led the way.

Our canine companions were two  Great Pyrenees and an odd assortment -sometimes two , sometimes three- of mixed bred size and shape. They fit in.

I did not. I was, and still am, sometimes, the one everybody loves to hate. In my lifetime of travels I’ve been the one everybody loved to love and the one everybody loved to hate and, truthfully, I  can’t tell you what role I liked the best.

Remember, I’d blown into Kauai from  big city Honolulu where I wrote a column for the Honolulu Star Bulletin/Advertiser,  some small local magazines, and acted with the only professional theater group in Hawaii, the Magic Ring Theater at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. I was also a noisy Peacenik, an early environmentalist, and a rabid Letter to the Editor writer. I’ve kept what I call the Bettejo Page, an entire Letter to the Editor section of the Honolulu Advertiser with a guest commentary about over-development signed by Mrs. William Dux. A picture of me-2X6- with a blurb about my column and a cartoon showing a lady  holding back a million junked cars has a caption that still reads “Beauty and the Beast”. The head of my long diatribe reads “Where To Go When All’s  Gone?”

My writing and outspoken personality went over on Kauai like a tsunami at a beach party.

Poor Bill, he was constantly bombarded at work with, “Do you know what she did?” Which, by the way, most of the time I didn’t.

I once had a neighbor drop in for coffee and regale me with his hour-long diatribe of what people were saying about me. My response, as I spilled hot coffee in his lap, “…and I hope they believe every word of it. Then they’ll stay away which is exactly what I want them to do.”

They did.


4 Responses

  1. Amen to dat!


    • SCAM seems to be slowing down. If I miss taking it to Sundance I’ll cry. Think good thoughts. Pray to someone if you think s(he) will answer. Should be able to get back to my column now. Hope. Where;s everybody gone on the discussion site? did I scare them away? You must cone over so Obama can meet my new puppy, Boots. she’s darling. would love to have someone to play with. Love you Bettejo


  2. Looking forward to seeing SCAM in print, online, wherever!

    The more recent examples have been both hilarious and insightful!


  3. Dear Bettejo —

    Always good to see your latest thoughtful and thought-provoking additions!
    Good way to start the day!



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