Above: vacant storefront in Kapaa, future island headquarters of Shelter Publications (just kidding)
Ocean I took a last swim yesterday before leaving the hotel in Kapaa, with fins and some new goggles. Saw fish, coral, sandy spots. Got out and swam 4 laps in the very nice fresh water pool just outside my room. I walked past a hotel guest on my way out of the water and he said, You looked at home out there. Well, all right…Headed north to Hanalei…
Birds All of them are new to me. A flock of little (finch-size) cinnamon brown ones with black heads, elegant color combo, that flit around like a small cloud, staying about 15' from admiring humanoids. A small grey/white one with a scarlet head. Small doves with blue beaks.
"I like coffee, I like tea, I like the java java and it likes me…Right now I'm at the Hanalei Roasting company with a 16 oz latte and a waffle with papaya and banana slices and, er, um -- whipped cream. No wi-fi -- hey-hey-hey; makes me think of Mung Noi, Laos village reachable only by water, and no motor vehicles. Remindful in the sense of being in a different world from my normal coastal (east + west) everything's-on-all-the-time mileau.
Kindred Factor I feel at ease with people here. Brother/sister appreciators of the ocean and the earth, tuned in to the beauty of the physical world.
Stone Age Polynesian Sailors It seems that around 3-400 AD, Polynesians from the Marquesas Islands reached Hawai'i (as well as Tahiti sand Easter Island) in wooden dugout sailing canoes, carrying plants and animals. They had maps made of sticks and shells. When I get time I'm going to Google around for "Discoverers of the Pacific," which appeared in National Geographic Magazine in Dec., 1974. Also book with fascinating title, The Vikings of the Pacific, by Peter Buck.
The S. V. Kauai The size of Kauai is exquisite. 25 X 35 miles, a ship in the sea. Multiple climatic zones, clean fresh air. It feels like I'm out in the Pacific in a (stationary) sailboat, with the ocean moving around me.
Note on travel writing: my blog is hardly viral. It's down from 2,000 people a day to about 1,000 these days (am posting less), so I'm not worried too much about ruining great spots by describing them. I feel that readers here are more or less like-minded people and should they visit these places, they'll be tuned-in and welcome visitors.
Hanalei is stunning, but I liked Kapaa a lot. The comparison is a bit like San Francisco/Oakland, or Medford/Ashland. One drawback in Kapaa is the traffic jams. I guess if you live there, you try to travel the highway during off hours. This is Sunday, can't believe this is only my 4th day here. Oh yeah, I'm staying in a nicely-converted school bus belonging to newly-met friends on the outskirts of town here.
Old Harley pickup truck in Kapaa