1932 - Honolulu Visit
Meher Baba departed from Los Angeles Harbour on the ship "S.S. Monterey" for Honolulu on 4th June at 11pm arriving in Honolulu, Hawaii on 9th June at 8 am.- less than 5 days journey.
This chapter of Meher Baba's epic to the USA in 1932 is in 2 parts. The first is the visit to Honolulu, Hawaii and the second is the visit to the South Pacific - New Zealand & Australia by Rustom Irani, which is in the later part of this chapter.
To read the previous chapter to this epic journey click the button below or select it from the index on the left.
Captain A.G.Townsend U.S.N.R. was in command of the ship on it's full maiden voyage.
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In the evening of June 4th, Marc Jones drove Baba and three of the mandali to the ship harbor, while Tod and Adi Jr. followed in Celeste W. Domola's car. Celeste was a cousin of the Joneses and had become very close and helpful to Baba during his stay. Marc's sister, Helen, was also of great help in keeping up with Baba's busy schedule. A large group followed to see Baba off. Baba boarded the Monterey, which was on its maiden voyage, and set out for Honolulu at eleven o'clock that night.
Baba shared his cabin with Carl Phillips. Tod had a cabin alone across from Baba's, and Chanji, Kaka, Adi Jr. and Beheram had another one nearby. The voyage, however, was not pleasant. Carl Phillips immediately got seasick and proved a veritable nuisance. The boy was disobedient and self-indulgent. Tod had to chase him from one end of the ship to the other, from the gym to the swimming pool, to get him to come to Baba when called. Carl's one thought seemed to be to enjoy himself as much as he could on this free holiday away from his parents. Baba was getting fed up with the boy's mischievousness and decided to send him back home at the first opportunity – as soon as they landed in Hawaii. Although Carl Phillips had been brought for Baba's work, Quentin Tod had to serve him night and day! It was always the case with whatever "ideal boy" was cared for by the mandali.
Many on the ship came to see Baba and he surprisingly met them all. After four days at sea, they arrived in Honolulu on June 9th at eight in the morning and stayed at the Moana Hotel for two days. Rustom, ( Rustom K. Irani ) whom Baba had called from China, met them at the dock.
After a private meeting with Rustom, Baba decided to send him on to Australia and New Zealand that same day ( SS Monterey ).
This was to forge further links with the West, the result of which was made evident after a number of years when so many Australians came into Meher Baba's fold. Rustom, however, was not allowed to land in Sydney ***due to the strict immigration laws - "White Australia Policy "
S.S. Monterey Interior
Honolulu Harbour & Docks 1930s
Moana Hotel, Honolulu
Royal Hawaiian Hotel, Honolulu
Honolulu Pineapple Farms
Liberty Theatre, Honolulu
On Friday, 10 June 1932, a friend of Elizabeth's named Mrs. Hutchins came with her sister to see Baba. (They had come to meet the ship, also.) Baba went for another drive in the afternoon through Honolulu, to the Niumalu Hotel and later to the Honolulu (Waikiki) Aquarium. In the evening Baba went to the Liberty Theater and saw Gladys George in the play, A Church Mouse.
The Liberty Theatre
Niumalu Hotel, Honolulu
Letter to Meher Baba from Quentin Tod - 14th June 1932, using the hotel stationary whilst sailing back to Los Angeles.
Courtesy of the Avatar Meher Baba Trust Archives, India
Poor as a Church Mouse (German: Arm wie eine Kirchenmaus) is a 1931 German musical
*** There is no record of the Huimalu Hotel or of Mrs. Hutchins.
Honolulu ( Waikiki ) Aquarium
La Pietra, Honolulu
Nearly all the staff on board ship were Japanese. As the ship steamed out of Honolulu harbor, a jazz band played as native Hawaiian women sang and danced, waving handkerchiefs and throwing flowers.
Settled in his cabin, Baba asked for Kimco's letters to be read again and again. Tears came to his eyes as he listened to their heartfelt words of love describe the agony they underwent in their separation from him.
On Sunday, June 19th, the boat landed at 6 A.M. in Yokohama. Baba got off with the mandali, and they refreshed themselves. At ten o'clock they went for a tour of Japan's second largest city. After an hour's taxi drive, they had a snack and walked through the crowded streets. They returned to the ship at noon and set sail at two o'clock.
They landed at 8 A.M. on June 20th in Kobe, Japan, where Baba and the mandali again got off and strolled throughout the city. They returned to their ship at 1 P.M. and sailed two hours later.
In Brief :
Baba sailed from Honolulu at noon on the 11th June to Yokohama, Japan. Arriving 19th June at 6AM, sailing the next day to Kobe, Japan arriving at 8AM on the 20th and sailing the same day at 3PM onto Shanghai,China. They arrived on the 22nd June at 2:30 PM.
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S.S. EMPRESS OF JAPAN ( later in 1942 S.S. SCOTLAND )
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The following illustrates the voyage the S.S. Monterey made to Australia.
Details of the route as well as the prices, but the itinerary is for 1930–31. The following options are given:
Matson Line: Sydney (Nov 1)–Suva (Nov 6)–Pago Pago (Nov 7)–Honolulu (Nov 14)–San Francisco (Nov 20). Other sailings departed regularly (usually fortnightly) throughout the year, so basically for 20 days at sea, Sydney to San Francisco.
The prices were:
First Class - £73
Second Class - £50/10/-
Third Class - £31/10/-
S.S. Monterey in Suva, Fiji
The sailing distance to Suva, Fiji from Honolulu is 5,072 km or 3,152 miles
The sailing distance to Auckland, New Zealand from Honolulu is7,080 kms or 4,400 miles.
Auckland, New Zealand
S.S. Monterey in Sydney, Australia
The sailing distance to Sydney from Honolulu is 8,150 kms or 5,064 miles.
The sailing distance to Melbourne from Honolulu is 8,864 kms or 5,508 miles.
Station Pier, Port Melbourne