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Jim & Denise visit Hawaii's Big Island -- February, 2009

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house on the farmHere is a diary I kept during our vacation at a farm in Honaunau, south of Kona. It's an agricultural property (4.3 acres), partially owned by our friend Karl Ohls, who invited us to come for two weeks. We also connected with my older sister Mo who lives in Kaneohe, Oahu. Please click on images for a larger view. I'll have more photos posted soon.

Sat. Jan. 31

Arrived at the farm in Honaunau late at night. It was too dark to see anything. Roosters were crowing all night. Don’t they know to wait until the sun comes up?

Sun. Feb. 1

Karl showed us around the farm in the morning. We picked some citrus fruit and avocados that were ripe on the tree. I discovered what a “rambutan” is. It looks like a rubbery red koosh ball, and the fruit inside is is like a peeled grape. In the morning we went to the “Green Market” farmer’s market in the town of Capt. Cook. It’s about halfway between Kona and Honauau. In the afternoon we drove up to Costco and the grocery store. We ran into an Anchorage friend there, Diane McIntyre. She and Don were on vacation in Kona. This evening Karl grilled chicken on the deck, and we watched the sun set.

Mon. Feb. 2

Place of RefugeToday we picked more fruit. Karl took us to “The Place of Refuge” where we hiked in a couple of miles. Took several pictures. Jim and I played tunes on the deck. There are some colorful birds that gather there every day after Karl puts out some bird seed. In the evening we watched a video: “From Here to Eternity”

Tues. Feb. 3

Today we met the next door neighbors, Deb and Mike Olson, and their son Lars. We discovered that Lars is the one practicing the drums we heard the other day. I picked a whole bucket of macadamia nuts today. Later I made fresh guacamole, and some pineapple cookies. I served these up later as Karl had the neighbors and some other friends over for dinner. A delightful time.

Wed. Feb. 4

Lava JavaMade another trip to Costco today. Karl needed a new computer monitor. While in Kona, we had lunch with Diane & Don McIntyre at a place called the Lava Java. In the afternoon we got a little bit of rain. Went to the movies and saw “Defiance”

Thurs. Feb. 5

A beautiful morning. Karl took us snorkeling at The Place of Refuge. It was my first time snorkeling. I saw some bright yellow fish, and some turtles. Later Jim and I hung around the farm and picked fruit, and played tunes. In between, I answered some e-mail and took care of some web site work from afar.

Fri. Feb. 6

juggling on lavaKarl needed to get a bunch of work done today on his computer, so Jim and I drove up north, intending to find a beach before picking up Mo at the airport. We ended up going back the Lava Java, and did a little shopping in Kona. By the time we got around to finding a beach off the beaten lava road, it was too late for beaching, but I took some pictures of Jim juggling. We picked up Mo at the airport, and brought her to the farm. I made more cookies, and we took them and some bottles of wine to a gathering at Deb and Mike’s house. We had a tour of Mike’s art studio.

Sat. Feb. 7

Mo on Hapuna BeachToday we were able to show Mo around the farm. Then we went to another farmer’s market, not as good as the Green Market, but it was OK. I got some “Kona Lisa” coffee. Then we drove up north to Hapuna beach – it was beautiful and sunny. Jim stayed home. Later we stopped for some ice cream. Back at the farm, we made salmon quesadillas for dinner, plus grilled pork wrapped in leaves that Karl cooked on the grill. There were thunderstorms tonight.

Sun. Feb. 8

black sand beachThis morning we visited the Green Market again. There was a guy there singing and playing a guitar and ukulele stuck together. Then we went south to a black sand beach – Jim stayed home. It was a small beach, and we were supposed to see giant turtles there, but we didn’t. Got a little bit cloudy. Back at the farm, we watched “Blue Hawaii” an Elvis movie, before taking Mo back to the airport. We stopped at Home Depot on the way home and Karl got a fire extinguisher.

Mon. Feb. 9
processing mac nuts
Jim and I shucked all the mac nuts that I picked last week that have been drying out. Then we picked another bucketful and started drying those. Drove to the grocery with Karl, and we stopped at the Coffee Shack and Mac Nut Factory on the way back. Made pizza for dinner

Tues. Feb. 10

view from the Coffee ShackHung around and did laundry. Two people from Haines (Burl & Nancy) stopped by for a visit. They told us about a thrift store down the road so Jim and I took a trip there later, and found some deals. It rained hard this evening. We watched a video “High Fidelity”

Wed. Feb. 11

Today we worked hard in the fields clearing weeds from the young mango trees. We got very dirty. Did some more laundry. We had dinner outside tonight and watched the lightning storms on the deck

Thurs. Feb. 12

juggling coconutsA beautiful day. We went to Honomalino Beach and met up with the Haines folks there. We saw dolphins jumping out of the water. There were several coconut trees at this beach. We cracked open one of them and ate it fresh. I took pictures of Jim juggling coconuts. Tonight we finally saw another sunset on the deck. It will probably be the last.

Fri. Feb. 13

pregnant geckoClean up day! We cleaned the whole place. Jim worked hard at cracking all the macadamia nuts. Then we roasted them, and Karl vacuum sealed them for us to take back. Made a trip to the Coffee Shack. It started raining real hard as we were about to go to the party next door for their usual Fri. night get-together. We took flashlights and got drenched. Jim even got lost! He had to go up the driveway to the street and followed some other people arriving. Talked to some interesting people at the party, and Jim took pictures of the underside of a pregnant gecko on the window. You could see 2 eggs inside it.

Sat. Feb. 14

Byodo-In TempleDid last minute laundry, cleaning, and packing. Then we flew to Honolulu where Mo picked us up. We got settled at her condo in Kanehoe, then went to visit the Byodo-In Temple. Got some great pictures. Then we visited Mo’s friends Steve & Irene, and took pictures of their garden and trees. This being Valentine's Day, we had trouble getting into the restaurants that Mo wanted to take us to, so we ended up buying groceries and eating at Mo’s place, outside on the lanai.

Sun. Feb. 15

Haleiwa Joes areaA beautiful morning. We went out for brunch at Haleiwa Joe’s and walked around their beautiful grounds afterward. Later Karl and I went to Kalama Beach. It was pretty big surf and a nice long stretch that I enjoyed walking up and down. Got in a final swim before it started getting cloudy and windy. Jim helped Mo buy and install a new printer. Then she took us all to the airport and it was back to Anchorage by 5 a.m. Monday. Amanda and her boyfriend met us and took us home.

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