My Hula Girl Broke Her Hip

My Hula Girl Broke Her Hip

A friend of mine, no doubt thinking I needed a little more levity in my life, gave me a hula girl doll – the little plastic figurine that, well, bobbles and wiggles on top of the dashboards of respectable automobiles. He was disappointed when the hula girl arrived with a broken hip. Not to worry, because this same friend, with the assistance of a little glue, repaired the hula girl and presented it to me as a stand-by until the replacement arrived. I am now the proud owner of two hula girls, one with a broken hip and one who can wiggle her hip just fine. One can never have too many hula girls.


I guess I’m not supposed to have favorites, but I kind of like the girl with the broken hip. There is something about that “flawed but sassy” look I like. I keep her perched right beside a small figurine of St. Francis, which seems to me a safe place for a hula girl to hang out, broken hip or not.


As my beach vacation approaches, I look over at my hula girl and smile. I have friends that will join me on the sandy gulf shores and together we will assemble our children, our stories, and our laughter. For a few brief days we will listen to surf and to music and dance like, well, like a hula girl with a broken hip. More than anything else we will remind each other of the grace of friendship.


We have our flaws – some are pieced back together in a crude repair, and other flaws are out there for the world to see. When we were younger we may have worked a little too hard at vacationing: organized meals; stacks of books that we “had to get through;” designation of responsibilities of chores and expectations. Now we are just glad to be together. Somehow the meals get cooked and dishes get cleaned and there is always a good beat to listen to.


It is a privilege to have the resources each year to take a beach vacation. I know for some people such a getaway is a luxury of time and money only to be enjoyed once or twice in a lifetime. I am grateful. More than the privilege of a vacation, however, is the gift of friendship. No, maybe gift is not the right word. It is the grace of friendship.


Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam summed it up simply in a song:

Oh I’m a lucky man, to count on both hands the ones I love
Some folks just have one, yeah, others, they’ve got none


Grateful to count on both my hands the ones I love. You don’t have to go to the beach to make a friend. Keeping a friend will cost you no money. Loving your friends is God’s grace to you and glimpse of eternal things.


This time next week I will be dancing with my friends like no one is watching…except for St. Francis, but I think I detect a slight smile.


“Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take nothing with you that you have received – only what you have given: a full heart, enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice, and courage.” (St. Francis of Assisi)






  1. You said it all. Amen, amen. I so enjoy your posts. How is your new addition, the puppy dog?

  2. Thanks for the sweet message, my Friend. Be blessed with safe travels and the renewal of many loving memories. Love to all the family.

  3. Great blog, Greg. You always hit the “nail” on the head ( or should I say “hip!”

  4. I hope you all are well. Great blog. There is always something that speaks directly to me–
    Enjoy your vacation!

  5. Giving and helping the lowly are the most neglected of our purpose on earth.
    A little touch,sometimes with glue helps alot.

  6. So profound. My friends I am fortunate to count on my hands and then to my toes. How lucky am I!!

  7. A true Gregs blog fan I am…
    I like that lil flawed hula girl too..imperfect we ALL are!!
    Have fun at the beach!!🏖🐬