Hawai’i – the first flower photos, Nikon edition

THIS post introduced my readers to the flowers at Casa de Emdeko. Those shots were taken and processed on my now ancient Samsung Note II (I think they just released Note 7, although they might have skipped a few numbers).

1280x 1280 nikon flowers collage

I now present the photos taken with my Nikon rig. Sharp readers will note that flowers are not the only subjects in the upcoming photos. That’s because I download, and subsequently process, photographs sorted by date rather than by shooting session or subjects.  And, as it happened during most of the days of our stay at Casa, I photographed things I saw from our balcony. The flower photos had me walking around inside the grounds. 

By the way, the SmugMug Gallery associated with this post is HERE. Go there to see the photos at full resolution. You can also click on the individual photos to open up a larger version in a new tab or window.

We start off with a daily sight from almost anywhere along the Kona waterfront (Ali’i Drive).




Apparently, hanging from a parachute while being dragged by a boat is a very popular thing with the tourists; that boat — and one other — are always out there. 

Also always out there are boats ferrying tourists from one place to another. Usually, at high speed. Popular destinations include the waters in front of the Captain Cook Monument. I briefly mentioned that in a previous POST. Sometimes, the boats are tracking dolphins and let people into the water to swim with said dolphins. I’ll cover that in a future post. 



Something I noticed about those rigid inflatable boats, someone is always sitting on the side, one leg dangling out. I think it’s a rule of some kind, but I’m too lazy to find out. Those things travel at a pretty good clip, and all I can think is them hitting the right chop to send the person flying. 

This particular perch is very popular with all sorts of birds . . . 

House Finch not looking at me.

House Finch not looking at me.

House Finch possibly looking at me.

House Finch possibly looking at me.

Here are more leg-dangling riders on a different boat.


But, we’re all here for the flowers, right? I’m here to show you know the difference between a capable phone camera and a proper DSLR . . . 


Samsung Note II

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

Eh,” you say, “not that much of a difference.” 

I look at you askance and throw this pair up . . . 


Samsung Note II

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

Got to tell you, Bob, I still don’t see that much of a difference.” 

Fighting back the bile, I grab yet another pair . . . 


Samsung Note II

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

Nikon D7000 with Nikon 105mm f/2.8 VR Macro Lens.

“You know, I think I prefer the first one . . . “

That’s the problem with taking decent phone photos and then processing them so that they look good; people, people not me, often become enamored with a photograph’s non-technical aspects.

No matter, I can see the difference, and I like the Nikon photos more than the photos from the phone, so if you want to see more phone photos, go back to the original post. The remaining photos in this post are all shot with the Nikon. 

Notice I’m not identifying many flowers. That’s because I’m no botanist and I ain’t yet got my grubby hands on a “Flowers of Hawai’i” book. Which reminds me, I also need to order the “Birds of Hawai’i” book


However, I do know the above is a Lantana plant/flower. I know because one of the bloggers I read had a photo of them and identified them as being hated by sugar cane growers. I’m guessing because they were considered an invasive and difficult-to-remove plant. I could be wrong. 

I also don’t know about these . . . 


But I know these next photos are of Hibiscus flowers. 



I also know they come in many colors. Interesting fact . . . for a few years, I was able to keep a couple of Hibiscus plants alive in Michigan. I lost them not to weather, but to aphids. 

I mentioned before that I don’t see much variation as far as flowers go. Pretty much the same choices of flowering plants and shrubs. There are these . . . 

Don't know them . . .

Don’t know them . . .

. . . and then, oh, look! . . . another Hibiscus!



The stigmas of these flowers are difficult to photograph. Because they are somewhat fuzzy, I never know if they are in focus or not. 

Because there is a lack of floral variety, I try to also capture the vegetation. Many plants sport boldly colored leaves. 


But, Hibiscus be all over the place and with different colors and textures, so hibiscus are what I shoot. 



Are those in focus? I can’t tell.

Plumeria, on the other hand, has well-defined boundaries.


While I showcase the variety of flowers, I should also mention a bit about another aspect of living here; interacting with native-born Hawai’ians. 

Like most places (in theU.S. or abroad) interacting with the indigenous population can be dicey. For the most part, people are nice. But, there are also them who resent the intrusion of “foreigners”.

That resentment can manifest in a number of ways, most of which don’t bother me. For instance, we were at the LapaKahi State Historical Park (I’ll be writing it up in a future post) talking with a person who worked at the visitor’s office and he was very nice . . . until we mentioned we had moved here. Both Melisa and I noticed a subtle but immediate change in how he spoke to us. Not hostile, but different. Apparently, we were fine as tourists, but not as permanent guests. Like I said, I don’t really care, but it’s interesting. 

Hey! What do you know! Another Hibiscus.

Hey! What do you know! Another Hibiscus.

Less subtle are some looks one gets when visiting certain beaches or parks. More ominous, this very morning we saw something which could have been a stupid — but honest — mistake but that to me looked like something else.

Ahead of us, a car turned into the road we were driving on and then forced an elderly woman on a bike against the curb, where she fell. The car did make contact with the bike. The guy did not even get out of the car, proceeding, instead to berate her for riding on the street (where, as far as I know, it’s her legal right to do).  We had stopped behind them and made sure the woman, and her bike, were OK. She was, or, at least, said she was. She did go down a tad hard, in my opinion. 

Now, that could have been a case of distracted driving. FSM knows everyone is on a phone nearly 24/7. Except . . . it was a T-intersection. The woman rode right in front of the car before the car turned. Also, it all happened in slow-motion, like if the car was trying to clip but not run over the bike. Plus, the way it was angled, had it kept going, the car would have driven up onto the curb. Like I said . . . perhaps distracted driving. Perhaps not. But in only one of those cases would someone not even get out of the car to check on the person they had just shoved against the curb and then proceed to yell at the person while they were still on the ground. If I were called to testify, I would have called it deliberate. 

That’s an extreme case, and only one, so I don’t want to draw any conclusions from it, but still.

Here are a couple of leaves to break up the tension . . . 



Like I said, the majority of people we’ve met are nice, are friendly, and have the Aloha spirit. FSM knows, there is a lot of spirituality here. I get as many blessings here as I used to get in Colorado, so in that regard, it’s been an easy transition. 

But there are others who seem to take them being native-born to the island as a bit more. You get the feeling they have a sense of ownership and with it, a certain amount of entitlement. You see this mostly in the younger generation, but it’s not by all means restricted to them. 

With that ownership, with that entitlement, there seems to be the opposite of the Aloha Spirit. Namely, a casual disregard for the land and beauty of the place and a casual disregard for its visitors. From playing loud music at a peaceful beach to dropping garbage at said beach, it speaks to someone who, in their self-proclaimed entitlement, is above the care and appreciation one should give this island, its land, and its traditions. 


Now, lest I give the impression that visitors and transplants are somehow more reverent than locals, know that the image of the “Ugly American” is well represented here (as is elsewhere). It’s just that I, perhaps in error, expect more from the native-born Hawai’ian. Like I said, for the most part, I see it. It’s just that it really stands out when I see the opposite. 

Also, I’m well aware the distribution of jerks is fairly even throughout the human population. I could just be seeing the natural distribution of human characteristics.


Of course, no one admits to it . . . 


I certainly don’t. 

I could also be seeing what I’ve always noticed about the younger generations — a casual disregard for consideration to others combined with an inflated sense of importance. I will keep an open mind and see if my initial assessment is flawed. 

However, it is something we’re taking into consideration as we look at homes and neighborhoods. 

Hey, look! More colorful leaves!


To be sure, there are other flowers one encounters in cultivated gardens. Flowers I also don’t know and can’t be bothered to research. It’s the heat, you see. The heat, and the humidity. And the heat. And the humidity. 



I just have enough motivation to keep going with this post, and even then I’m now on my third day since I started it. 

That’s one of the reasons I don’t mind posting these . . . 



I know what those are . . . they are Hibiscus flowers. How about that!?

Some of my readers might wander over to SmugMug and thus notice the occasional bug included in the photos, usually in the background and fuzzy. That’s because I did not notice them when I was snapping the photos. 

Except this one; this one I noticed. I did not notice the little one next to it until I looked at the photo, but hey, 50% batting average is not bad. 


I gave away my book on insects, but I will go out on a limb and say that is a fly.


I do know that flower; it’s a Pinruota Blanca. Notice the configuration. In a strong enough breeze, the whole flower takes off. It’s how it disperses its seeds, you see, riding the breeze for up to fifty or sixty miles. It’s what makes it rare, here in the island. Fifty or sixty miles in any direction lands you on the ocean. Local dwarf dolphins sometimes grab them and shoot through the water making like airplanes but unless the dolphins beach themselves, the seed has not a chance of germinating. 

Yes, I made all that up. It’s sad I even have to explain that but there you have it. 

How about more colorful foliage?



These next two photos show a variant of the Bird of Paradise flowers.



It’s one of those flowers that, from a distance, look good . . . and then you get close and it looks a bit, you know, junky. Sort of like politicians. And Hollywood. 

Again, I don’t know this next flower, but the plant itself is very tall . . . or, I’m very short. 


It reminds me a bit of an Iris, or maybe her cousin, Ethel. Yes, I write stuff like this for the two, or perhaps three people who actually read my written words. Hopefully, it entertains them. 

On a completely unrelated subject, I typically get 20 to 30 views to this blog per day. In the last three days — and today is not over — I’ve had 354 views. What’s amazing with that is that the number of visitors (not just views, but people actually visiting the blog) usually average half the number of views. In the last three days, 281 visitors. 

One might think it has to do with my Hawai’i posting. One would be wrong. The majority of views, 237 as of this writing, were to the Devil’s Tower post I did back on April 1, 2012.

Weird . . . especially since I’m more proud of my The Devil is in the Details post.

Now, here is one photo that is definitively better with the Nikon than it was with the phone. So much so that I never bothered posting the phone photo.


The phone camera does not have the dynamic range to capture the darks and lights nor to do justice to the texture of the leaves. 

Speaking of doing justice, how about a few photos doing justice to the Bird of Paradise flower?



Next up, Fred (so named by diem3) . . . 


Definitely not a flower. This is a Carolina Anole, also know as a green anole, American anole, and red-throated anole. It’s also occasionally referred to as an American chameleon because of its ability to change colors between various shades of green and other shades of brown.


However, it is not a true chameleon as it’s color changing reflects more changes in temperature and stress levels than actual mimicking of its environment. 

Still, a nice lizard specimen. I think this is a female as it lacks the pink/red dewlap.


Now, this next photo is also, astute readers will note, not of a flower. I happened to wander close to the seawall and snapped a photo of the remnants of a wave escaping back to mother ocean. 


I’m fairly confident that by now all but one or two readers have left, their eyes glazing over and their brain fried from too many photos and too many words. Think of it as me doing my part in aiding natural selection breed more stamina in readers. But, fear not; only nine more photos . . . I think. 

I had given these next flowers a clever and interesting name (or so I thought), but a reader had informed me of its actual name. 

Not "Bottoni Parasoli" but "Crown of Thorns"

Not “Bottoni Parasoli” but Crown of Thorns

Personally, I prefer my name; less sanguine.


Like I said, I do like Plumeria. 

These, I shall name Celeste Giravento.


And that is the last of the flower photos for this post . . . but not the last of the photos. 

This critter is a mongoose


They are not attractive critters, but they are all over the place. Like all invasive species, they are very destructive to native animals, insects, birds, and turtles. Introduced in 1883 to control rats in the sugar fields, they do far more damage to the local ecology than any benefit they offer in controlling rats.

Humans . . . they be always thinking they know better. Especially, politicians. Ask them; they will tell you all the grand ideas they have for “improving” our lives, regardless of consequences.  

These next creatures are Turisti Isaltain Barche. These things infest all corner of the island, especially during holidays and the winter months. I think local authorities have given up on controlling them and now just accept the money they bring. 


For most residents, they are a benefit because of the money they liberally spend to ride boats, crowd the sidewalks, parasail, and eat. For other residents, like me, who derive little benefit from their presence, they are just a nuisance species.

I think this next bird is a Zebra Dove.


For such a small bird, it’s very noisy and one of the birds likely to help wake you up very early in the morning. The odd thing with these birds is that some appear much smaller than others. Perhaps I’m looking at juveniles versus adults, but to me, they look like separate birds. However, the various references only show this and one other dove for here, and the other dove looks nothing like this. 


There, it’s puffing up, all bothered that I’m snapping pictures. 

This next photo is yet another bunch of Turisti Isaltain Barche being ferried to and from who knows where. 


Finally, a shot of the bottom of a palm tree. I still don’t know if the texture is a result of insects boring into the bark or if there are small elves with tiny axes who go around hacking holes into palm trunks. 


That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ o o o o o o ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Slooow Blink

Slooow Blink

Astute persons might have noticed these doodles, and correctly surmised they hold some significance for me, and perhaps for humanity at large.  

If you click on the doodle, and nothing happens, this is the link it’s supposed to go to: https://disperser.wordpress.com/2011/12/26/palm-vx-and-i/.


If you are not reading this blog post at DisperserTracks.com, know that it has been copied, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.


Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards
About “likes”:   Of “Likes”, Subscriptions, and Stuff

Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
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13 Responses to Hawai’i – the first flower photos, Nikon edition

  1. desleyjane says:

    Wonderful shots! And I can see the difference too 😉


  2. sandra getgood says:

    Beautiful flowers, interesting boats, yes, the camera does make a difference. and you sound like you are getting settled in now. What a beautiful place Hawaii is! And we know you will find some really special surprises. Other than Spam.


    • disperser says:

      Thank you. But . . . how am I going to top Spam?

      We are getting slightly settled but, you know, unsettled because we are still figuring out where we might want to live. Got to also admit that sometimes the heat gets to me but that too is a function of not being settled (we would not buy a house where we are renting).

      As for beautiful, yes. Many manicured places around, but also people living their lives. I’m surprised at the diversity one can find in many neighborhoods. By that, I don’t mean race or ethnicity. I mean economic standing. I mean that one can see great disparity between houses even in the same street. That’s something one does not typically see on the mainland (at least not anywhere I’ve been).

      Also, when we don’t catch a glimpse of the ocean, we can forget where we are. Meaning, life here is not that different than anywhere else. People going about their business, with all the associated plusses and minuses, and the occasional view.

      It was a bit like that in Colorado . . . you could find yourself in an industrial area, or a run-down area, but you could look up and see the beauty of Pikes Peak and the foothills. Same here.

      But, we are looking forward to settling. Not close to it yet, but working on it.


  3. In the flower pairs…I see a difference! In some, their parts are up, while in others, their parts are down!

    YAY, there’s Fred!

    HA! You crack me up! :-D For example: “…doing my part in aiding natural selection breed more stamina in readers…” :-P

    I can’t imagine any place on earth having more beautiful flowers and trees (etc.) than Hawai’i! And you’ve captured them beautifully!

    OHMYGOSH! That mongoose is so cool! Rikki-Tikki-Tavi (byRudyard Kipling) was one of my favorite stories when I was a little girl!

    Definitely small elves with tiny axes!

    Well, so much GREAT stuff to comment on here…but, I’ll stop now and just say, “Thanks for the beauty, funny, and kindness!”

    HUGS!!! ;-)


    • disperser says:

      One can’t be up all the time . . . but, if it happens, one should seek medical help.

      I imagine most tropical places are like Hawaii as far as flora and fauna go. Also like many places, some local plants and animals went extinct because of introduced species. The sugar cane industry left a large footprint in the islands and its aftereffects are echoing through many generations.

      And, you are welcome. I am glad when readers find entertainment and humor in my stuff.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. renxkyoko says:

    I hope you’ll love living in Hawaii….. very tropical, and still the US. I’m very familiar with the flowers you’ve posted here. I see Bird of paradise and the one that looks like an Iris flower is what we call Bandera Espana. Have you seen a double – petaled hibiscus yet ?


    • disperser says:

      Thanks for the name . . . and, we’ve seen so many hibiscus flowers that I feel like I’m seeing double . . . so, probably, yes.

      Seriously, I don’t know. I’ll keep my eyes out for them.


  5. Beautiful images, I’m enjoying the tropical flowers. I’d have to go,to a local conservatory to experience them here. Even our local plant life (Ontario, Canada) is getting sparse right now due to a significant drought.


    • disperser says:

      Thank you.

      The drought is one of the reasons we decided to leave Colorado. Although, the wildflowers seem to do well every year despite the very short growing season. As for the tropicals, I’ll eventually try to capture all the varieties here. We’ll see how I do.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. AnnMarie says:

    A trip to SmugMug is always a treat, so I was especially delighted to see numerous flower photos turned into paintings! But I must admit that I really like the original color of the Bottoni Parasoli, not to mention that I much prefer your name for them . . .

    And in lieu of wandering and exploring Hawaii in person, your posts are the next best thing! They provide not only food for thought, but entire meals!

    Liked by 1 person

    • disperser says:

      The alternate colors/treatments are from the following post. I was originally offer them up in a separate gallery, but thought it might be nice seeing both the original and the painterly version.


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