No, I’m not talking about those deliciously seasoned meat fillings wrapped around a corn tortilla of which we celebrate on Tuesdays, or any other day of the week for that matter. I’m talking about tako, which is the Japanese word for octopus. With Hawaii being a melting pot of different cultures, we have grown to use certain words from different languages.
Today, coincidentally on a Tuesday, I was craving tako. So after a long day of being on my feet at work, I took a dip on Oahu’s southeast shore with GoPro in hand.
How to find
Well this looks boring, doesn’t it? Finding tako is easier when you know how to look for their homes. Scope around a bit and try to find an area where the coral and rocks are white and polished–this may be a tako hole!
What he does is he finds a hole in the reef and cleans it out. He digs out the rocks and decorates the outside of the hole with it. He will then use it to conceal the entrance. And there! The tako has turned his hole into a home.
Watch out for these guys! They also hide in holes in the reef. This is a spotted moray eel (puhi, in Hawaiian). Although they look mean and scary, they won’t bother you unless you bother them. They may stare hard at you while opening and closing their mouths (full of sharp teeth), but that is just how the breathe.
What’s this? It appears to be a tako hole. Let’s take a closer look…
But no one’s home. Moving (or swimming) on…
On to the next hole.
Found one! This is a Hawaiian Day Octopus. Can you see him? They are experts at manipulating their colors to match their surroundings and so can be difficult to spot. In Hawaii, when people have a knack for spotting tako easily, we say that they have a tako eye.