As I round the corner, I hear accordion music.
There, on a bench outside of Macy’s Ala Moana,
sit an elderly white-haired man with matching full beard,
and a very young blond boy with glasses, maybe 8.
The old man plays a song I don’t recognize,
something Germanic, dancey, very Octoberfest and beer-stein clinking.
The little boy holds an ‘ukulele, but does not strum.
He appears to be waiting for something, ear pressed to his ‘uke.
Maybe it’s a more Hawaiian-style song where he joins in,
one that’s bubbling up on the old man’s playlist, and he’s ready.
As he pumps the instrument, I realize the old man looks like a perfect Santa,
perhaps just recently retired from his seasonal job of Ho-Ho-Ho-ing,
jumping into his new gig with the ease of a quick-change artist.
The little boy could have been an elf, the two
escaping the North Pole for a vacation in tropic climes.
When I walk closer, I notice a cup on the ground.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen buskers outside of Waikīkī.
It’s odd, so out of context; I stop and stand staring at them.
The old man smiles at me while the little boy, sits head bowed, listening for his cue.
I drop a dollar in the empty cup, nod and smile.
The ex-Santa smiles and nods as well,
and the little boy listens to his silent ‘uke.