Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Great Hawaiian Vacation Part 3

Well, I have basically run out of ideas of what else I can do on the Big Island. We did all the long trips, and the only thing left to do is hike the trails that I know or do things that would require the ocean to be a little bit more calm. We have been getting, I would say, 6 to 7 foot swells in the Bay, which is highly irregular. Anyway, yesterday we took a trip to North Kohala. Our first stop was Pu'u Kohola.
The coolest thing about Pu'u Kohola Heiau for me was the woman who worked in the visitor information center. She was an elderly Hawaiian lady who was very polite and stated that she would be happy to answer any questions. My mind is full of questions about ancient Hawaiian customs, religion and history, and on this particular day I had the courage to ask them. We basically stood there for 20 minutes as she explained ancient Hawaiian cosmology to me. After seeing the temple I returned to the visitor's center and we talked about spirituality, one of my favorite topics. Then Manabu finished going to the bathroom and we set off for lunch with my mom at, where else, the Harbor Grill. After a good lunch we drove up to Hawi and saw the original statue of King Kamehameha the Great.
Next on our tour of North Kohala was Pololu Valley, where we were greeted by a very friendly mule.
Hiking to the bottom of the valley was kind of fun. However, we have been sharing 2 pairs of my dad's shoes between the three of us, which has been a major obstacle to hiking more often. So for the Pololu hike I wore sandals with straps. However, this started to be a major annoyance, so I took them off and just went barefoot.
Pololu was rather full on the day we went, which was a little strange, since most people cannot make the hike.
So after the hike we returned to Wailea and ate take out Thai food, which everyone else seems to have thought was spicy.

On Tuesday the 27th Koki was scheduled to come in, and in the morning the waves looked good. I figured that we could ride waves until we had to pick him up. However, our body board equipment was in terrible shape, we only had two sets of poor quality fins, and some of us were not at the level of swimming required for a day as big as it was. Instead of body boarding in the bay I decided to take everyone to Mauna Kea, only to find that Mauna Kea was closed due to dangerous surf. So we sat in the Mauna Kea pool for an hour as I tried to work on our swimming skills, with limited success. Eventually we finished and decided to go to Kona. Ali'i drive was very popular with Takaya and Manabu. It appears that more Korean visitors are coming to Hawaii as well.
Here is Manabu buying bargain calendars and other gifts at the ABC store.
The Palace on Ali'i drive.
A great sign that was posted in one of the shops. You would never see something like thing on the Mainland, I think.
After finishing up with Ali'i drive we went to Ba Le for lunch, and I have to say, I was unimpressed this time. Ba Le has great food normally, but this time it was really, really bad.
Ok, so then we went to the Airport to pick up Koki. We had not heard anything from him and so we didn't know if he was coming or not. He came on time and everything was fine. It turned out that he had not been dialing 1, and so his calls had not been going through. He had called Takaya 9 times, but Takaya had left his phone in the house. Here I am giving a hammer fist to Takaya as he calls for help.
I returned home and gave Koki the standard tour. One particularly funny Dialouge occured when I introduced him to Grandpa Clay. Koki: "Hi, I'm Koki." Grandpa: "You're quirky?" Koki: "Yes." Grandpa: "Well I'm Clay." Koki: "You are kowai (means "scary" in Japanese)? " Grandpa: "Ha ha. But you can just call me Grandpa."

We'll see what tomorrow brings.

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