It’s our second day and we did the walk from the Ka’Eo Kai resort to the fancy St. Regis Hotel. (It’s taken me all this time to finally realize that we are on a ridge.) When we got to the end of the road, we walked down to the water and once at the beach facing Hanalei Bay, we went over the legend of Puff-The-Magic-Dragon.
Mary suggested that the three of them sit on the rock and that I take their pic. (L to R – Mary, Alyssa, Rose. The dragon is above their heads.) Derrick and Dom are off down the beach.
We spent the rest of the afternoon poolside; me drinking Gin-and-tonics, the rest of them downing Mai Tais. Even without the sun, we had a great time laughing and messing with each other.
Tomorrow is the Farmers’ Market and then a rush to find some sun. (I will not go looking for Helios; the beaches of the sun-god is not where I worship.)
The market in Kilauea, just down the street from Princeville, is one of my favorites. And today it did not disappoint even with rain, at times, coming down in buckets. It was full of old hippies and what I call live-forevers. These are Kaua’i’s Millennials and here too they defined themselves by a compulsion for exercise and for healthy-eating. They do yoga, eat only organic, wear dreads, spurn make-up and work for environmentally conscious projects. All are blond, all are tall, all are skinny. It’s a very exclusive club and like their counterparts on the mainland pretend openness and diversity.
Many have started scented-oils boutiques, juice bars, but all espouse a philosophy of modernity that removes them from the agri-businessses and fossil-fuelers of the mainland.
Like the hippies of old, they too want a better world; like the hippies of old, they too have retreated from society; like the hippies of old, they too want an alternate life-style. But unlike the old hippies these new iterations are not willing to forego the luxuries of modernity. Their devices – iPhone and iPads – are never out of reach; their Coach purses and Marc Jacob’s sandals look right at home on the wet grounds of Kilauea farmers market.
And Jesus was a sailor when he walked upon the water
And he spent a long time watching from his lonely wooden tower
And when he knew for certain only drowning men could see him
He said all men will be sailors then until the sea shall free them
We’re on the Makai Golf Course, at the end of the ridge; to the right is Hanalei Bay; to the left is Anini Beach. (L to R – Derrick, Alyssa, Rose, Mary, Domenic) We decided that the path down to Anini Beach would be less wet, less difficult so we headed off. We always stop on the ridge. It’s taken me five years to understand that Princeville is all build on the ridge above Hanalei Bay.
Nina Simone was singing Suzanne and I wanted to add some of the lyrics to this post.
The other awareness that finally landed in my head was the length of the Anini Coral Reef. Derrick’s phone listed it as a 2 mile barrier. The Anini Coral Reef stops the waves from coming into shore creating a flat pool of ocean water.
This is the first blog-category that I’ve featured people in 4 of the 5 posts. Am I just getting old? I think it’s more about having featured the locations in previous Kaua’i posts and it’s natural to focus on the people. (L to R – Dom, Rose, Derrick, Alyssa, Mary, Mario. And none of the men are wearing sun-glasses.)
The Queen’s Bath always attracts the strange and stupid. This morning there was a family with 4 kids and a puppy. The kids were running over the black-lava rocks barefoot; the poor puppy had to make his way around the pools, over the boulders with no one near to help or guide him. The parents were huddle together looking at an iPhone oblivious of their kids, of their pet; they laughed together at some inane item on the device as their kids roamed all over the rocks. The imbecile award goes to another family who came down with snorkel equipment and pride in their stupidity. The ocean screamed danger, but they were pissed at the suggestion that it wasn’t safe to go down to the water. I insisted we leave, because I wasn’t interested in watching someone drown. The Queen’s Bath is infamous for the number of people who have drowned off its cliffs. The location is so remote, that any rescue effort is find the body.
We began the day hiking the Kalalau Trail one mile up and into jungle. The trail-head is at Ke’e Beach and after our hike, we sat on the beach for a couple of hours. This is one of my favorite beaches, because the Na Pali Coast is right there and the barrier reef keeps the waves back, creating an amazing swimmable area. The beach also offers me the option of staying out of the sun. The section between the parking lot and the beach is shaded by hundreds of ironwood pines.
In the above image – L to R – Mary, Derrick, Rose. The adult had gone walking and after a long trek down the length of the beach we headed back.
The hike up the into the mountains that are the Na Pali Coast is strenuous, but the look-outs make it worth the effort. Looking down on Ke’e Beach from the quarter-mile marker and seeing the reef, the still pools, the undulating coast-line is mesmerizing. Periwinkle, azure, cerulean, turquoise, cobalt, denim – are all there in one pallet. How is it that the Pacific can produce such variants in one location? I’ve never seen these shades of blue in the Atlantic or the Mediterranean.
Because of last night’s downpour, the trail was wet and more difficult. I spent most of the climb stepping with my hikers side-ways to minimize slipping and falling on my ass. This time I also brought no cameras. The last time we did the trail I was carrying two cameras. (Talk about a stupid idea.) The only thing I can say is, ignorance is not a great planner. This time knowing what to expect, all I carried was a water-bottle.
Today we headed south to Waimea. The drive up to the canyon is always a surprise to people who do it for the first time. (This was my 4th trip up the mountain.) The stream is one of my favorite locations on the ride up. The red soil surrounding the stream really does look extra-terrestrial. It’s hard to believe that the black lava-rocks disintegrate to red soil. And I have no understanding of why the banks of the stream have no vegetation. (L to R – Derrick, Dom, Mary, Alyssa, Rose)
At the first overlook, we could see the canyon and two waterfalls; at the second overlook, the one facing the ocean, the mist was so dense you could see nothing. We turned around and headed back down to Waimea. There’s a taco hut calling our names.
We always stop at the Taco Place for lunch and I always get a vegetarian taco. It’s a deep fried taco shell filled with fresh veggies.
I don’t remember seeing this full of a waterfall on any of the other visits to the canyon. But then there have been a lot of clouds this week and we had a major rainstorm Tuesday night.
The falls are on the opposite side of the canyon. We are standing at the lowest overlook facing into the canyon. The other overlooks are on the same side, but to the left and around the side of the cliff, facing the open chasm and the blue, blue Pacific.
The ride down is very disorientating and can feel like sea-sickness – nausea and headache. But lunch settled all stomachs and we proceeded down to Poipu Beach. This is the land of the true tourists; locals are absent and the place reeks of money. (There are million dollar homes with no property, built against the black rocks of the shoreline. But they have a million dollar view of the setting sun.) The appeal of the south is the sun and the tourists. Locals do not live in the Poipu area; they come in to clean and at the end of their shifts leave by bus. All the major hotel chains are down here and the Grand Hyatt is the Vatican of 20th century American consumerism. It’s grand lobby and multi pools celebrate American excess. The complex is as grand as any of the robber-baron mansions of Newport. The difference is that it won’t last, because after all it’s all prefab cheap construction make to look like a Frank Lloyd Wright prairie house.