Thursday, May 31, 2007

 

Thursday Thirteen--Favorite Islands

Today is a Full Moon and a Blue Moon....and I'm wide awake at 2 AM. The gleaming moon and the night sky full of sparkling stars compels me to remain awake to savor the magic and the mystery of an early Maui morn. The chirping of the geckos are the only noise I hear. Could I live on another island anywhere in the world as special as Maui I ask myself?

For today's Thursday Thirteen, here are my choices for possible contenders:

1. Ibiza, Spain
2. Santorini, Greece
3. St. Barths , West Indies
4. Moorea, South Pacific
5. Bali
6. Martha's Vineyard, USA
7. Capri, Italy
8. Sardinia, Italy
9. Harbour Island, Bahamas
10. Mykonos, Greece
11. Bora Bora, South Pacific
12. Turks and Caicos, West Indies
13. St. Martin, Caribbean

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

 

Recuperating and Reflecting on Maui

Artwork courtesy of Love Peace Happiness

Yesterday our last house guests left--continuous for two months and eight days including the different sets of guests! As much fun as it is to have house guests, both my partner and I are now furiously attempting to play 'catch-up' in many areas of our lives which we neglected while preoccupied with guests.

We did more exploring of Maui during this time period of guests because we were showing others around, and I was shocked at many changes I saw which I normally don't see in my daily creative activities within our home.

The construction projects are mind boggling--everywhere we drove (except Hana), we saw buildings going up, especially in Kihei, Kaanapali, and Wailea! In Makena mansions are being built!

My partner heard the news that Go Airlines was offering a fare for $9 one way inter-island, but by the time he had heard about it, the deal was already sold out! The good news is they are having a contest with good prizes for signing up for their e-newsletter, so I signed us up.

The inter-island air fares had been up to $150 one-way with Aloha and Hawaiian Airlines before Go showed up on the scene. Talk about change!

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

 

Maui's Not -So- Secret Little Beach

Little Beach in Makena is not widely publicized because it's Maui's NUDE beach, and nude beaches are a little too 'wild' for many people. However, our house guests wanted to see it, even if they did have to climb up the fairly steep incline of the 30 foot bluff to get to it. So on probably THE most packed beach holiday of the year, Memorial Day, we drove to Makena Beach to guide our guests to the far right end of Makena Beach where you climb up the bluff and down the other side to arrive at Little Beach.

I am well-known by all my friends and family to have the most amazing parking spot angels, and my angels didn't let me down yesterday. As we pulled into the packed Makena Beach parking lot, I remarked that my angels would have to be tripled to get a parking spot or something to that effect! As it turned out, as we rounded the curve and with no parking places available, a couple called out to me and asked if we were looking for a parking place. I think everyone in our car said 'Yes!' at the same time, and the male of the couple told us to follow him to his van around the next corner....which turned out to be a primo parking place!

We never had any intention to strip down and remain on Little Beach for we had many other places to visit before our day's sightseeing adventures were completed. Furthermore, I'm don't really care to go nude at crowded beaches, although I respect the right of others to be nude if that's want makes them happy. My choice for a nude beach would be on my own private island with pale turquoise water, white- powder sand, and lazy, little waves-- none of which matches the description of Little Beach.

The beach was crowded, and some people wore swimwear, and some didn't. Looking down on the beach from the hill, I recalled an evening gathering many long years ago with bonfires, dancing, music, and gaiety. Those days are no more with the new law passed in 2006 closing Makena Beach after sunset.

I didn't live on Maui in the 60's and 70's, but I know people who did, and their photos and stories of the 'Good Old Days' of Makena are fascinating...they were Maui's version of the notorious "Taylor Camp" of Kauai. A dirt road ran to Makena, not the paved road we drive on now. Hippies set up camps and settlements everywhere in this area. Everyone ran around nude with dark, nut-brown skin for their living rooms were the beaches behind the kiawe forests.

Little Beach is all that remains of this world....and even then, only a diminished replica. Maui has been claimed by another tribe now.

At the middle, lower left side is the opening and climb to Little Beach.
Here is Makena Beach (Big Beach) on Memorial Day.

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Sunday, May 27, 2007

 

Lavender Fields Forever

Yesterday we did a full day of sightseeing upcountry Maui with our house guests. One of the pleasant surprises of the day for me was discovering the Ali'i Gardens Maui, Home of Ali'i Kula Lavender, a lavender farm on the slopes of Haleakala where 45 different varieties of lavender are grown with 75 products also available for sale at the gift shop.

We didn't take any of the tours they offered as we stumbled upon the farm on our way to somewhere else. I guess you could call it serendipity because the lavender farm uses the symbol of the dragonfly for their logo, and this is one of Sherry's favorite symbols too! In the lavender farm brochure, this is written, "Our symbol of the dragonfly also known as the "pinao" in Hawaiian, symbolizes personal rebirth and renewal. That is what you'll experience at Ali'i Kula Lavender. Our dragonfly is also known for being the first to herald in the Spring offering rejuvenation to all living things."

The grounds were gorgeous with flowers growing everywhere...the gift store filled with fabulous lavender products...and the taste of the lavender lemonade...well, let's put it this way: it's unique!




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Friday, May 25, 2007

 

Re-discovering Shopping on Maui



Photo: terragalleria

I hardly ever shop on Maui for items other than food because shopping over the internet is so much easier. There is a much bigger selection of items, better prices, and like I mentioned in the first sentence: IT'S EASIER!

My usual shopping trip entails going to the local health food store, Hawaiian Moons, for fresh produce and fruit and then on to Safeway for basics.

However, whenever people visit us, I am re-introduced to shopping at local stores for stuff other than food! Since it's inevitable that our company wants to shop, I am usually spun-along on shopping expeditions. In the process I discover lots of nifty new products, or one of my house guests buys something which is a 'better mousetrap'.

For instance, I have colorful Hawaiian style coasters for the table top, but it was Sherry who discovered an item which is ingenious: a coaster shaped like a round flipflop called "drinkwear...for the foot your glass!" This item is perfect for your stemware glasses as the rubber thong handles holds your glass bottom tightly.

Another item I recently discovered is the "Any Kine" Caddy. It's a folding caddie available in both small and large which is "ideal for storing picnic and kitchen utensils, desk supplies, baby supplies, and other items. Use it as a gift basket". The fabrics are Hawaiian prints with flowers, etc., and the folding legs are probably bamboo.

I'm very impressed with the ingenuity and diligence of the creators of products who dream their creation...then manufacture them... sell them to big stores...and make a living from their creations. This is the American entrepreneur dream, and it's alive and well in Hawaii!

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

 

Thursday Thirteen-- Luau Photos

As those of you who've been keeping up with my posts know, we've been doing the 'tourist thang' lately because we have house guests visiting us from the Mainland. Last night we took our house guests to a luau. And for today's Thursday Thirteen, I share 13 photos from last night's luau at the Renaissance Hotel in Wailea.












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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

 

Elvis Lives On In Hana and Hana Roads


At one time there were many little stands or kiosks lining the road between Hana town and the Seven Sacred Pools. However, this too has changed!

Now there is a shack selling Thai food of all things and not much else except for one or two souvenir stations. One of the places that has remained is the roadside jewelry stand of the woman in the photo above with Elvis, a die-hard Elvis fan. Her brightly painted Elvis 'shrine car' is parked across the narrow road from her jewelry counters which are conveniently located near a beautiful waterfall. Thus, this is a busy, congested place where lots of tourists and tourist vans stop for picture taking and souvenir shopping.

If you thought the road to Hana was hairy-scary, then the road worsens when you head out from Hana town to the Seven Sacred Pools. This is the area which was closed down for awhile after the last big Maui earthquake weakened one of the many bridges. The old bridge was replaced with a shiny new one which we drove across with much trepidation (on my part) for it looked flimsy to me.

I watched near accidents happen several times because someone wanted to go faster and go around the long line of cars which come to a standstill at various one-lane-only places. When they put on the gas and scooted around, they barely avoided a head-on collision! We often read in the newspapers about these head-on collisions on this stretch of road--no doubt due to similar impatient drivers! One needs to be very patient, courteous, and aware on this road.

I also watched a traffic jam on a bridge where no one wanted to move. I wasn't on the bridge, but a car that had been in the lane behind us had darted out and attempted to cross on the one lane bridge when there were already other cars on the bridge. Trouble was---there was no place to get around. Everyone was stuck for there was a deep ravine on one side, the cliff on the other. I tried to back-up because if other cars would back up on my end, then possibly the knot could be untied. The car behind me didn't want to back-up at first, but finally it moved!

After about ten to fifteen minutes, the mess got sorted out, and I was shaking my head in disbelief and relief!







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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

 

I Survived YET Another Trip To Hana


We returned late yesterday from spending several days in Hana and negotiating the approximately 52-mile tricky, curving, oftentimes one-lane road to Hana. This trip usually takes between 2 to 4 hours one way depending upon a number of variables: how fast you drive, traffic, roadwork, and stops along the way to explore the lookouts and state parks. Maui's only coastal rain forest is breathtaking as you wind your way to Hana.

My partner drove over, and I drove back. We wanted to show our house guests the "other" Maui. Hana is charming, serene, and mystical. It's nickname is "Heavenly Hana" because it is so peaceful, laid-back, and full of mana (life force). In many respects, it's like another Maui of 30 years ago where time moves at a slower pace, and everyone always seems a bit sleepy. There is no golf course in Hana--not a single one! The feeling is of a small town, and the combination of the scenic beauty and revitalizing air and weather makes you very relaxed.

We haven't been to Hana in about a year, and to our dismay, we discovered lots of changes! Our first surprise was discovering one of our favorite waterfall pools had been closed down. We had read something about the controversy regarding Blue Pool, yet we didn't know it was actually closed to the public!

The story goes like this: a Maui guide book (I'm not going to mention the name of it!) had published the directions to Blue Pool which then alerted lots of tourists to the location of this incredible waterfall pool, and since the number of visitors increased and crossed the land of an owner to gain access to the pool, there was a lot of ill will towards the spreading of this information from the owners because of liability, etc.

As we drove down the unpaved, country road to Blue Pool with our guests in the back seat, we viewed many "Blue Pool Closed" signs, and I kept telling my partner who was driving...."Stop, and let's turn around." Obviously, the "Closed" signs, and the sign "What part of No Trespassing don't you understand" were serious clues! I finally convinced him, but it wasn't easy as he's a very determined, and some might say a stubborn man!

We were both in a bit of shock as we had clambered over the rocks to Blue Pool for so many years, and now it was closed! Here's a photo from the 'old' days.


Over the next days I will post more about our Hana excursion. I'm still recuperating and recalibrating. As I mentioned earlier, I drove home from Hana to South Maui, and the drive requires a lot of focus, concentration, grace, and fortitude. I'm grateful we arrived home safely and all in one piece--although a piece of my heart always remains in Hana!

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

 

The All-Day Trilogy Excursion



Yesterday we took our house guests on the All-Day Trilogy Sailing Adventure to Lanai, another Hawaiian Island about an hour and a half away by motor. Through the years, we have sampled nearly all of the boating companies available, and the Trilogy fleet of custom high-tech ocean sailing catamarans are one of our favorite companies because of the great service, crew, and other offerings. Trilogy is the oldest sailing company operating on Maui (since 1973!), and their service and boats are always top notch. We were on their newest boat yesterday, and we had a great time being out on the water! There wasn't enough wind to actually sail, but I got a great photo of the massive sail anyway.

As we approached Lanai, a pod of spinner dolphins greeted us, and as we left Lanai, they escorted us out of the harbor. After disembarking back in the Lahaina harbor, Sherry wanted another fitted toe ring, so we both got fitted for a custom toe ring in the Wharf Cinema Center across from the harbor. The business card of Tropical Artware advertises that they are "Maui's Best Toe Ring Shop since 1987!", and this small store has some of the most unusual selection of items you're likely to find on Maui including fine oceanic arts and wood carvings, fertility fetishes, blow guns, ceremonial pipes, and other hard-to-find items. Many items aren't for sale because they're collectibles.

The biggest laugh of the day is the story of the "strange man" standing in the parking lot. The parking lot used by the Trilogy Company in Lahaina sits across from a great little restaurant called Lahaina Coolers. So while Sherry and I were getting our toe rings, Jim and my partner had a couple of drinks and snacks while they waited on us there. Jim sat facing the parking lot.

Even though both of them wear glasses, they saw this strange looking dude standing in one place all the time, and by the time Sherry and I arrived, they were getting concerned why this guy wasn't moving. Why was he just standing in one place they speculated? Was he a criminal waiting for the right moment to break into cars, or what was he up to?

It was not until we finally made it to our parked car in the rear of the parking lot that we saw what they had been having suspicions about. Here's what they saw: an old mannequin standing behind an abandoned truck! We laughed so hard tears rolled out of our eyes!


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Friday, May 18, 2007

 

The Cheeseburger In Paradise T-Shirt

Today's events took a different turn than planned, and I so it was that I decided to drive our house guests, Sherry and Jim, to Lahaina for dining and shopping. Jim was wearing his Cheeswburger In Paradise t-shirt from Key West, Florida--it was well-loved and well-worn with a small hole near the neckline. I decided it was a time to add to his CIP wardrobe, so I suggested we eat at the Lahaina Cheeseburger in Paradise which sits right on the water.

The fresh ocean breeze blew on us as we dined on delicious hamburgers. On the menu there was a special: you could buy a t-shirt which was wrapped up to look like a hamburger with your burger, so Jim went for it. I will let the photos tell the rest of the story. The final result you will have to tune back in for on another post, but here's the beginning!





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Thursday, May 17, 2007

 

Departures and Arrivals

Photo: terragalleria

Yesterday our friend and house guest left, and my partner and I spun into a whirlwind ofactivity to prepare for the next two house guests who are arriving early this evening. They are relatives of my partner, and one of them has never been to Hawaii before. Thus, we are going ALL-OUT to ensure that our Maui hospitality meets his fantasy expectations.

There has been much to do to re-arrange our home to accommodate two people in our guest bedroom which normally functions as my art studio and home gym. My partner is very proud of his roof, and he decided he would make the roof look great. I know most of you may be thinking: the roof? Ours is a special roof, and it gets very dirty when the wind blows. We have a hose connected to a waterline so it can be washed off from time to time. However, yesterday the wind was gusting as it has been so much lately. I advised my partner NOT to wash the roof under these windy conditions, but he didn't listen to me. He's a typical male in this regard....and went right ahead and made a huge muddy mess on our large windows which look out to the ocean. This view is one of the key ingredients in making our living room stunning!

Thus, he panicked, and he tried to find a window-cleaner at the last minute. Since the windows are high, these windows require someone with a tall ladder, etc. Luckily, our handyman came through, and he came and cleaned them today, so once again our view of the ocean is pristine.

I have been doing all the shopping, cleaning, placing, fixing, and organizing. I haven't had much time to blog, and with all the activities my partner has planned for his relatives, I'm going to be a hit-and-run blogger for the next 15 days!

This might be a blessing because I am totally addicted to blogging, and I will be forced to leave the computer and go to places I haven't been in a long time such as a luau. After many years of living on Maui, one tends to avoid luaus like the plague! We'll be doing the road to Hana journey again, the Jacaranda Festival in Kula (maybe), the trip to Lahaina, and all the other tourist-y things.

If I don't have a lot of time to write, at the very least I'll post photos of our excursions with the relatives.

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Thursday Thirteen and the Letter M

The Letter M has always been very familiar to me since it is the first letter of my first name on my birth certificate, and thus, I am fond of it. For today's Thursday Thirteen, I'm going to list Thirteen Words I like which begin with the letter M.

1. Maui--my home for many years
2. Mother--my greatest and proudest success
3. Magic--my great joy to enjoy the magic of the world
4. Mystery--we live the mystery every day
5. Meditation--which I like to do on a daily basis
6. Mangoes--which grow on our trees and which I like to eat
7. Miracles--are happening all the time when we notice them
8. Money--a necessity to plan the Game of Life
9. Merriment--my preferred lifestyle
10. Madonna--with whom I feel very connected (the original Madonna!)
11. Mahalo---a word which means Thank You in the Hawaiian language
12. Mercury--the ruler of my astrological Sun sign
13. Magnanimous--the way I like to behave

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

 

What is happening to South Maui?


Yesterday when I returned to my car from the dentist's office, I saw a flyer which had been placed under my windshield wiper, so I removed it before driving. Looking over the flyer after returning home, I was amazed at what I saw!

The flyer was a map of the area of South Maui which stretches from Wailea through Makena, and the map showed in white marks how much of Wailea and Makena is going to be turned into residential properties. I was horrified!

On the other side of the flyer was written this headline, "Does a Second City in South Maui Make Sense? Is this what is needed and wanted right now? Speak up! The future of South Maui has not been decided yet!"

The final question really got to me: "How many Maui residents will be able to afford a home in this Second City?"

If you're interested in joining into this discussion, here's the Save Makena website.

The concerns of this group are valid: how much traffic can South Maui's roadways hold? And what about the water and sewage plants?

There's a lot of food for thought about what is going to happen to Maui in the very near future! When we moved here, it was rumored that South Maui would eventually turn into another Waikiki....and by the looks of the development plans for South Maui, this rumor may soon turn into fact.

Panama is looking better all the time!

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Monday, May 14, 2007

 

Maddy McCann and The Hunt for Missing Children


The story of Madeleine (Maddy) McCann is huge in Europe, but this story doesn't seem to be as big in America. Today I read online that J. K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, has pledged a $3 million reward fund for the return of Maddy. Read the story here.

So far Rowling is the biggest contributer. Other contributors offering large amounts are Sir Richard Branson, "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell, businessman Stephen Winyard, and Topshop owner Sir Phillip Green.

Four-year-old Maddy disappeared on May 2 in Portugal as she slept inside her parent's holiday apartment when they went out to dinner nearby, and thus far, she hasn't been found. The distraught parents, Kate and Gerry, have been accused of being terrible parents for leaving their three children alone when they went out to dine, and the Portuguese police are also catching flak for bungling the case. Fingers are being pointed all over the place: a pedophile ring, a ring who kidnaps young children for their body parts for patients prepared to pay large amounts of money for healthy organs, and other such terrifying speculations.

They mystery of missing/disappearing children needs to be solved, for it has been going on for far too long! Hundreds of thousands children (maybe even more) go missing every year. Where are they??? We should establish an organization that employs the world's best minds and trackers on this subject and set up a fund with all the money that is donated!

Every one of us needs to stay alert for one never knows how far a child could be moved around, even as far as Hawaii. Here are some great links to organizations should you have any clues:

Missing Kids
Child Connection
Innocence in Danger has photos of Maddy posted on their site plus are asking others to wear yellow in support of finding Maddy.

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

 

Mother's Day Is My Alibi

Photo: D.L. Accents

Last evening my partner wanted to take me out for an early Mother's Day dinner, and since he was going to be ultra busy on Mother's Day, I agreed. Thus, I broke my fast and enjoyed a delicious dinner at Chez Paul.

However, today I'm back in the saddle again and once again fasting until our next batch of company arrives on Thursday. My eating plan while we're entertaining our company is to stick to small portions with zero sugar and lots of water so that I can once again fit into my cute clothes and tiny bikinis.

This past year I've become a blog-o-maniac! Not only have I been writing on ten blogs, but I've been attempting to finish two books, paint, photograph, run a household, and manage a number of other projects at the same time. Because I've been more sedentary than I was in the past, the weight slowly crept up on me.

I know I'm not the only person who has had this experience of weight-gain, so if you would like to share any tips in the comments section, I invite you to leave me a comment.

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Saturday, May 12, 2007

 

Second Day of Fast and Feeling Good!


A number of years ago I was once again needing to loose weight as I am now, and I worked with a woman who tested my body for allergies and foods that would assist me to loose the pounds I had put on from indulging. The 'not-allowed' foods were, of course, my favorites! The plan worked well for me, and I took off all the weight I had gained from the foods my body doesn't tolerate, especially sugar. Sugar is toxic for my body as it is for most people!

Everybody has a different constitution, and this is the reason why there is no ONE perfect weight-loss plan for everybody! It's helpful to determine what body type you are, and then work with a specialist as I did to discover your body wisdom. There's an old saying: your body doesn't lie!

Here's the LARGE list of what my body doesn't tolerate or process easily:

Grains: wheat, corn, spelt, rye or oats

Sugar: desserts, wine, alcohol, beer

Coffee or caffeine drinks

Cheese, including goat milk cheese or yoghurt

Honey, maple syrup or chocolate

Peanuts, nuts or chips

Mustard, vinegar, cinnamon

Butter or regular milk

Fresh or dried fruits

And the SHORT list of what my body needs to be healthy and loose weight:

Millet, rice, soy, beans

Beef, Lamb, Eggs, Chicken, Shellfish

Fresh tomatoes and canned tomatoes

Root vegetables and other vegetables

Sunflower, sesame and pumpkin seeds

Protein drinks made without whey

Once I complete my three day fast, I plan to once again follow this program as I know it works for me!

Here's a great link to health and medical quotes.

It's helpful to read these quotes to remind yourself about health, at least it is for me.



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Friday, May 11, 2007

 

Dreaming of Food

Photo: terragalleria

I began a fast today. I'm overdue for a fast. It's that simple.

The first day is always the worst, and food is on my mind a lot. The second day is easier, and by the time you've hit the third day, food seems like a very strange thing!

But food isn't strange today. It's very desirable, so I've been busy distracting myself with work to take my mind off food, and I chanced upon this amazing sensual light table on YouTube.

Check it out. I want it. Loaded with food! After the fast, that is.

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

 

Thursday Thirteen--Maui Images

One of my passions is taking photographs, and today I'd like to share 13 recent photos I've taken on the Hawaiian Island where I live, Maui, Hawaii. I also have two photoblogs, so if you'd like to see photos of the skies of Maui, Hawaii, click here or here for more island photos. The images shown below are things you might see while visiting Maui.

Steps leading into a swimming pool

Plumeria flowers beginning to bloom again

The windmill at the Maui Tropical Plantation

Palm trees
Cranes
An old anchor
Amazing, golden sunsets
Health food store in South Maui

Pineapple design chandelier

Hibiscus flower
Flower girl selling leis
Celebrites Gallery in Lahaina and Wailea

Wall scultpure
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