Hawaii has its own natural Christmas decorations-festive poinsettia and red, waxy anthuriums bloom on byways and decorate homes. A Matson freighter, nicknamed the “Christmas Tree Ship,” comes each year with a stock of fir trees from the U.S. Northwest. Arriving about the same time on the beach at Waikiki is Santa himself. Whether he surfs in on a board or paddles to the sand in a canoe, children marvel at his lengthy trip from the North Pole. With water all around them, it is not surprising that Santa comes by boat, for he would not neglect the little folks of the islands in the Pacific. They look for him as eagerly as do the boys and girls in the lands of snow and ice.
From this point on, beaches and streets are alive with carolers, singing to the accompaniment of ukuleles. Nativity pageants with Chinese, Japanese, Hawaiian, Filipino, and Caucasian children playing the Biblical roles are numerous, and yuletide luaus, featuring Kailua pig, are painstakingly prepared.
Before the missionaries and the American settlements went to Hawaii, the natives knew nothing about Christmas, but now they celebrate the day much as do the Americans who live there.
The most striking difference between Christmas in Honolulu and Christmas in New York is that in Honolulu in December it is like June in New York. Birds are warbling in the leary trees; gardens are overflowing with roses and carnations; fields and mountain slopes are ablaze in color, and a sunny sky smiles dreamily upon the glories of a summer day.
In the morning, people go to church, and during the day there are sports and games and merrymaking of all sorts. The Christmas dinner is eaten in the shade of the veranda, in happiness and contentment.