Sunday, 3 February 2008

27 reasons to go to the Hawaiian islands

edited to add - the picture layout is not coming out quite the way I placed them, but you get the idea.
#1 - Sitting on the lava flow watching the turtles right beside you in the tide pools at Pu'uhonua o Honaunau on the Big Island. W took this pic and he just loves it. #2-Very cool wooden statues at a Place of Refuge
#3-Birds, birds and more birds, along with all their beautiful song. So nice to hear this after a few months of quiet at home.

#4- Making friends with some very curious, very colourful gecko on the Big Island.
#5- Incredible flowers - all the more beautiful because there is nothing blooming at home

#6-Beautiful views from the balcony of the first spot we stayed in Kona-Kailua and a pic of the same spot from across the bay

#7- Watching Green Sea turtles rest on the warm black sand beach
#8- Getting steamed in the steam vents at Volcano Park. The ground feels hot in many spots.

#9- More Volcano park -You thought you had bad driving days?

#10- Staying at Tutu's Place in Volcano. (K - Magnum PI's Make-up artist owns it) Love this cottage!! This is exactly the kind of spot I would love to live would just need to be on a few acres in the woods somewhere.

#11-Cool lava flow (well actually... hot, I guess)

#12 -Gorgeous waterfalls. Hawaii is a place where you can actually get to the point where you are thinking - yeah, yeah, another waterfall already. Big deal!

#13-And the fruit...oh, the fruit. We are always blown away by the fruit on Maui but the Big Island was amazing. It is considered the "breadbasket" of the islands and have they got some fruit! It's cheap too, especially in Hilo. Think 4or 5 huge papaya for $1, a big bag of garlic for $1. 8 just-picked oranges? Yup, a dollar. E loved the rambutans. This is the second box of strawberries we got. The first batch was from a road-side stand, I think E and I might have scared the woman selling them. We came running down the road, digging through my change purse for money, desperate to taste fresh strawberries. When I told her that we hadn't had any fresh strawberries since summer she couldn't believe it. I explained that we were from Canada and then had a sinking feeling that I was as bad as people who portray all of Canada as a great white north with everyone getting around by dogsled and living in igloos. I'm sure the woman felt quite sorry for us strawberries and all.

#14-avacado the size of my foot...$1. (or to all you chocolate lovers that is a little bigger than a large, (yeah, right) chocolate bar) The butter avacados are amazingly smooth and delicious. I ate an awful lot of them. Living on the islands one would just find it so easy to eat seasonally, I would think. #15-A night at the Sheraton to play in their pool (and for me to relax poolside for a bit).
#16-Ice cream sandwiches on Maui - Can we say that the locally made ice-cream and locally made cookies makes up for the fact that they put it in a disposable bowl? No? I didn't think time ask for no bowl and be prepared to eat fast before it melts and drips all over. Actually it really isn't much of a challenge to eat these treats fast.

#17-Sunsets, can't forget those.

#18-How can you not like being somewhere with signs like these?
#19-It just means that you will see lots more of these. Love sea turtles (honu in Hawaiian), and love that the state is issuing a plastic bag ban. #20-A favourite spot to relax, boogie board, play and snorkel.

#21-An excellent aquarium, filled with all kinds of fish that you actually see when you are out snorkeling. (well, hopefully you won't be seeing any Tiger sharks- I do have a shark story about the one that was at the exact spot I swam with the dolphins when I went back with the kids the next day, hoping that they would get a chance to see the dophins - what a difference a day makes, heh?)

#22-The moon and stars.... the same, but different from at home.
#23-Humpback whales everywhere. Actually, so many that it didn't even cross my mind to take pictures of them. It is an important birthing and breeding area for them. Here is a pic off a website.
#24-So many interesting trees and plants. I was especially interested this year to see these cacao plants...all the better to make this with. (dark chocolate-covered macadamia nuts and coconut)

#25-A hike over the lava at the south end of Maui to a secluded black sand beach.

#26- A new (to us) hike over lava to an excellent snorkeling spot called "the aquarium", pics from this are on the underwater camera and not yet developed. We hiked there with friends ranging in age from 4 months to 73 years. Very fun!
-pics to come soon-
#27-But the best...the all-time-number-one-dream-come-true-can't-make-me-any-happier-with-a-cherry-on-top thing...swimming in La Perouse Bay with a pod of around 80-90 dolphins, babies too. I don't have a pic of the dolphins but here is one of me coming back in afterwards. I think my hubby was very pleased that I decided to come back in after about an hour and a half - he says that for awhile, he thought I might just swim away with them.
Or just having 27 days away from the cold, snowy weather is pretty nice too.


Katherine said...

27 great reasons, Heather! Love the pics, it all looks wonderful.

sheila said...

Scharffenberger? Where did you get that? Oh, how I love that chocolate.

Pictures? Hawaii? Oh, right. Glad you had a good holiday, Heather.

But let's hear more about that chocolate? How did it taste?

Nicola said...

Blogger obviously couldn't handle all those photos at once! Loved the Road Closed sign stuck in the lava. What a beautiful place, makes me want to go, even if the thought of swimming with large sea creatures freaks me out! Your post must have snuck in under the wire last night as after I posted my boring knitting one I didn't see yours. Only found it this morning.

Anonymous said...

Heather, thank you for posting such a lovely blog, I just loved the pictures, it made me feel like I was there!


Mary-Sue said...

oh heather!!! oh oh oh. i'm normally SO contented in my life at home... but oh my!!! i'm breathing a little too fast after reading/seeing all that. thanks for sharing! looks like an amazing trip. glad to have you home, and glad you didn't swim off with those dolphins, you mermaid you!!

Heather said...

Hi Shelia - the Scharffenberger was from my most favourite health food store ever - it is in Paia, a little town on Maui. The store is called Mana Foods and it is a must see. (must-shop?) It is choc-a-bloc with goodies, like piled up to the rafters in a rather ramshackle old shop sort of feeling. I actually don't like that chocolate as much as Camino chocolate, should I be embarrassed to admit that? Is that showing my plebian taste? Maybe it is just because I am accustomed to Camino?

Hi Carol - Glad you liked the pics, we had such a wonderful time. I hope you won't let the pics making you feel like you were there, hold you back from actually going there. It is a good place to go with a grandchild. :-)or maybe a lovely daughter and S-I-L....

M-S - I thought about you every time I saw that orange mustang rag-top. I was going to take a pic of it and send it to you with the tag, "Having a good time still, wish you were here" :-)

livnletlrn said...

Someone came to my blog from yours through the unsocialized HS knitters ring, so I clicked here and was thrilled to see this post, as we're heading to Hawaii next Fri! Thanks for the delicious taste of things to come! Amazing lot of parallels betw. our lifestyles too, with the traveling, camping, love of living history, life learning, creativity. I subscribed to your blog today. Come for a visit at :-)

Anonymous said...

Oh my, how beautiful. I'm glad you had such a great time, AGAIN. It's easy to see why this is becoming a yearly thing. I do worry that one year you're not going to come back.