It’s about 9 a.m. Wednesday and Jaime Daluson answers the door of his Pahoa residence with a huge smile.
“Hello! Hello! Come in; come in,” he says, his grin widening.
Dressed in a polished white button-up shirt, his black slacks without a single wrinkle, one thing is for certain: at 96 years old, he’s still got it.
Daluson proceeds to shuffle through the hallway that leads to his living room, pausing briefly to explain one of the hundreds of pictures taped on the wall.
“There’s one of the New Hope pastor,” he says, while pointing in the direction of the photograph, his aim quickly switching to another nearby.
“These are the beautiful flowers my wife plants. I’ve taken a picture of every one,” he says.
Almost every inch of Daluson’s home is covered in pictures.
With images lining the walls, from the ceiling to the floor — in his living room, kitchen, side-room, bathroom and bedroom — it appears life is one big photographic opportunity for this Big Island resident.
Mel Barao, a photo manager at Longs Drugs in Pahoa, says she’s been processing Daluson’s photographs since the facility opened in 2010.
“Yeah, every three or four times a week he comes in to do pictures,” she says. “People come in and print the same one over and over, but he does all different people. He’s the only one that does that. He’s a nice man.”
It’s evident during the visit to Daluson’s home he’s not just nice, he’s the life of the party. Snapshots of weddings, birthdays, nieces, nephews and dances cover almost every inch of his ranch-style dwelling, each telling their own story.
“I’ve been taking photographs since I was 10 years old while living in the Philippines…” he says.
“Here’s one of when I was in the hospital,” he says with a laugh, an indication he found his hospital gown amusing. “And here’s one of the trip I took to Las Vegas. We went to Vegas, Reno and Thunder Valley…”
Daluson stops talking to wake up his wife, Severina, from a nap.
Severina enters the living room, a little less enthusiastic since she was suffering from some knee problems that day.
She smiles and heads toward the kitchen while Daluson puts a disc into the DVD player attached to his flatscreen television.
Before sitting down, Severina points to an older photograph that features her husband, his children and a wife from a previous marriage.
“We met in 1998,” she explains. “And married in 2000.”
When asked what she thinks of the photographs, Severina laughs and says, “That’s what he likes to do.”
The conversation is interrupted by a sudden blast of music coming from the television.
“It’s too loud! Turn it down!” she says while chortling.
Daluson follows his wife’s request, but not before explaining the people on the screen are performing a type of Filipino wedding dance number.
Music, like photography, is his passion and a hobby.
“I like music and I like taking photographs. It just fills my heart,” he said. “When I take a picture of someone, I’ll give it to them and they’re so happy…”
Daluson later brings out his own digital Canon camera, and before leaving has one request:
“Come here, come here. Let’s get a picture…”
Email Megan Moseley at firstname.lastname@example.org.