The Big Island is . . . big. I think that’s why they named it “The Big Island”.
Mind, you, not Texas Big . . . heck, not even Colorado Big. Wait, why do people say Texas is big? I mean, it is, but Alaska is more than twice as big.
Anyway, The Big Island of Hawai’i . . . when you are driving around it, the vistas from various parts of the Big Island give a sense of scale that impresses more than the vast expanses of Texas. HERE’s some information on the Big Island of Hawai’i.
By the way, this marks a return to my long, meandering, and many photos posts. Mind you, not forty photos . . . thirty-nine. Here’s a quick preview before we get started . . .
So, we begin with a few days ago. Maybe, three days . . . maybe, four days. Honestly, I don’t remember. I could look at the name of the photos as they reference the date they were taken, but that would mean I would have to look up what day this is.
I mean, I know it’s Sunday because there was a beach mass (or some other beach spiritual function) at the Old Kona Airport. As a reminder, that’s where we walk these days and I happen to see the sign as we entered the park . . . it welcomed all the spiritual people; I paid little attention to it other than take note of the fact I might hear some chanting. As luck would have it, it took them a long time to set up and we left the area before fevered worshiping spread through the park.
Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah . . . starting a few days ago.
This is nice and also unusual . . . for the past week and a half (amazing that we’ve only been here a week and a half) there’s always been a slight haze making the transition from ocean to sky a bit difficult to figure out . . . but, not this morning.
Hey! I know what day that was; it was Wednesday. The Pride of America, a Norwegian registry ship, is in the bay.
That’s shot from the car as we drove on Ali’i Drive after our morning walk at the Old Kona Airport Park.
That’s our morning routine . . . we wake up anytime between 5:30 and 6:00. We leave the condo by 7:00 and head to the park. Depending how we feel (legs, knees, backs, etc) we walk either three or four miles. We drive back to the condo, have breakfast, and decide what we are going to do. By the way, on this particular morning, I saw this . . .
** WARNING ** WARNING ** if you have any level of arachnophobia, skip the next few photos.
Don’t worry; that’s just Plumeria. I took that photo to make sure the voice command worked on the phone (sometimes it turns off just to annoy me). I checked the voice command because I had to reach over some branches to get this shot.
That spider is probably three to four inches long from toe-tip to toe-tip . . . assuming spiders have toes. This spider is a Black and Yellow Garden Spider. The interesting thing is that this spider ranges all over the US and I’ve only seen it in Hawaii. Now, I did try to get a shot from the other side . . . but failed.
The next day, I tried again . . .
A little better, but the lighting was not good . . . so I asked Melisa to hold my hat on the other side and provide some shade.
The bold zig-zag patterns are called “stabilimentum” . . . I think it means “mint from the stables”, but don’t quote me on that; my Latin is a little rusty.
So, we’ve also started to hit the consignment shops since we’ll need a computer table and a sewing table for when we decide to set up our hobbies.
We didn’t see anything suitable, but I did like these two things . . .
I did see a teak Indonesian gargoyle-like thing (with movable wings, no less) that I really liked . . . but proudly avoided buying. At least for now, we’re resisting the lure of rebuilding our stash of things that we don’t really need.
By the way, this fellow is along the path we walk . . . he seems happy.
On Saturday, we went to an estate sale. That was the view from the house; the picture does not do it justice . . . because like all subsequent photos, it’s from my phone. That’s right; I left home with snacks, coffee, hats, suntan lotion, and no Nikon gear.
. . . I bought a fan and we bought a few plastic containers.
“A fan, you say.”
Why, yes Bob, a fan. You see, boys and girls, we do not have air conditioning. Unlike in Colorado where, when the indoor temperature cracked 74º F, we fired up the A/C and pushed it back down to 72º F, here, we have to make do with fans. I’m going to say something now that I can’t rightly explain.
The typical indoor temperature at our condo is 81º F . . . that’s because the typical outdoor temperature is 81º F or higher. The typical indoor humidity ranges from 75% to 83%. A tad higher during and after it rains. At night, the indoor temperature drops to 79º F.
Now, had you told me in Colorado that this was going to be our lot in life here, in Hawai’i, I would have said “Well, screw that! I’m moving to Alaska.” But, here’s the funny thing . . . we’re pretty comfortable. Unless we go out walking or do some strenuous activity, we don’t even sweat. The logical explanation is that we’ve acclimated to the heat. An unkind person even pointed out that as people age they tend to prefer hot climates, but I still don’t like the heat and I’m at a loss to explain how, in temperatures and humidity that I would absolutely hate in Colorado, we can both be comfortable.
. . . I don’t believe in magic, but . . .
Anyway, we left Waimea and headed toward Hawi (pronounced “Havi”). You can click on the next photo for a larger version (the non-panorama photos are WYSIWYG).
Don’t quote me on this because I’m still learning the various landmarks as seen from different points on the island, but below left is Waimea. Shrouded in the clouds, on the left and above Waimea is Mauna Kea. Just right of center and also capped by clouds sits Hualalai. The Waikoloa coast is behind the foreground hill. The ocean is barely visible to the right of the mound and before the fence. The panorama spans roughly 180º.
That mound in the foreground is interesting with a visually pleasing mix of dark soil and dried wild grass . . . not that you can tell from the phone photo. That will be properly photographed next time I travel that road. Here are individual photos from the same area.
Oh, here’s one more . . .
Yes, that is our Highlander. We picked it up at Hilo on Friday. Still with Colorado plates and all. Let me tell you that it’s a joy to drive after nearly a month of driving a Jeep Compass. In fact, we were only supposed to go to the estate sale, but once out and driving, I just wanted to enjoy the smooth ride, quick acceleration, and comfort of a proper car.
A bit farther up the road, we stopped so I could take this photo.
Gosh, that’s gonna look good when I snap it with my Nikon.
Hawi is a lot more commercial than we remembered . . . so we did not stop and continued on to Kapa’au, birthplace of King Kamehameha I.
This park is one we’ve visited during each of our Big Island visits. There are other things I’ll write about nearby, but since we did not visit them this time, I’ll skip them for when we do.
This park has something else I like . . . a public restroom. I kid . . . mostly.
It has big-ass trees. Well, trees don’t exactly have asses, but if they did, the asses of these trees would be HUGE!
Before I go on, this is also a memorial park for . . .
Also, before I get back to the trees . . .
I’ve yet to learn Hawai’ian — if I ever do — but I was able to guess Kapu means . . . well, it has a lot of meanings, but I’ll go with “sacred”.
Anyway, trees, big . . . .
The above tree would be even more impressive had it not lost a limb . . .
. . . although, I think it’s trying to grow a replacement . . .
As far as the other tree . . .
. . . also big, and with interesting textures . . .
I’m occasionally faulted for not including common objects in the photos to give a sense of scale. Here you go . . .
Perhaps it’s not evident . . . let me try a different treatment.
Still don’t see it? Let me help . . .
That would be a coin; a quarter, to be specific, included in the photo for scale.
Leaving the park, we headed back home. We did make one other stop, at the port at Kawaihae . . .
That’s the Spirit of Seatrek (for a moment, I had read Star Trek . . . and was disappointed when I did a double-take).
We made it home just in time to escape the rain . . . our first good and prolonged rain since we got here. The indoor humidity got all the way up to 88%. The indoor temperature was 83º F. We were still pretty comfortable. Go figure.
This morning (Sunday, as I write this) we had French Toast. The rest of the day was uneventful other than yet another gecko is in the condo. They are very difficult to catch and even more difficult to herd outside. We’re not sure how they are getting in and Melisa is not happy about it.
I don’t want to kill the little lizards, but unless some of the traps I’ve set start working . . . well, we won’t go there until we have no other choices.
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. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.