Fresh Paint, Hot Bread

The newest generation of painting crusaders (clockwise from top left): Kauwela, Kaimoku, Leimana, Kailana, Kala`e, Lilia, Ohiaku, Koa, Maire and Melia. 

By Zalina Alvi

The sign in the hot bread lane says “Don’t write on the walls or the price of hot bread will increase.”

But the walls get covered in graffiti anyway. Thankfully for all the Molokai residents who go down there every night, the Ritte family won’t let them stay that way.

Twenty years ago when Hele On Bar was selling beer instead of hot bread, Scarlet Ritte decided to take matters into her own hands and painted the walls. Ten years after that, her daughter Kala`e joined the team and last week, armed with brushes, paint donated by Ace Hardware and determination, the family returned to paint once more.

As eldest daughter Kala`e said, “This is a part of our history and we got to come here and look at this,” pointing at the graffiti in the lane. So, instead of obscene drawings, which Kala`e said her daughter pointed out not too long ago, the family chose flowers and beautiful colors.

“Everybody loves it,” she added.

Hopefully, the lane will stay untarnished for the next 10 years, and the price of hot bread won’t go up.


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