Saturday, October 29, 2011


Almost forgot some links: Here is one for the Lemongrass Grill:

Kaua'i Backcountry Adventures for the tubing:

Kalapaki Joe's:

Hukilau Lanai:

The Na Pail coast -- do more research than I did, so you won't suffer the losses I did with the camera and cell phone!:

And The Bull Shed:

Sorry for the delays on this -- these places were good to me in many ways, and I have to return the favors they were so kind to give me!

July 9th -- Hiking the Waimea Canyon, and Some Little Golden Nuggets I Enjoyed

July 9th was another peaceful, quiet day, the proverbial calm before the storm that would occur on my final day. It began with breakfast at Eggbert's -- I love the name ad I loved the food! Here are some pics:

I love the courtyard setting:

And the crabmeat omelet was scrumptious! Once again, the waitress answered all my dietary questions, letting me know which portion size would likely be sufficient for decent, yet not too large, meal:

Afterwards, I hiked the Canyon Trail in the Waimea Canyon, the largest in the Pacific region, drawing comparisons to the Grand Canyon:

Of course, there are waterfalls galore in the park:

And here I am with the canyon in the background:

Afterwards, I enjoyed tuna -- I had eaten tuna fish, which I never liked, so I assumed I would not like tuna itself. I was wrong! This was the first time I ever at tuna, at The Grove Cafe...:

...with the World's Westernmost Brewpub on site!:

Here is a link to the site:

Later, as I waited for my film from my waterproof, disposable camera to be developed -- the film I had used the day before during tubing, I visited the Allerton National Tropical Botanical Garden:

The gardens themselves are gorgeous:

And I was able to pick the fruit!:

Alas, I had to give the fruit away :(. It would not be allowed on the plane, so I gave it to the film developer.

Here is a link to the site:

I am not much of a plant lover, but I must say, this was a nice little nugget, a good, pleasant experience in my final days in Hawaii.

Another nice nugget was Spouting Horn, right across from the garden. This natural blowhole, in my humble opinion, was much more impressive than Old Faithful, which I saw on a 2003 trip to Yellowstone Park. Here are some pics:

I ended my day with dinner at the Lemongrass Grill:

The interior is pretty with the statues and flowers:

Live entertainment. I told the man it was my 40th birthday celebration, and he dedicated a couple of songs to me, including New York State of Mind, by Bill Joel, to celebrate my home state.

I love the tuna from lunch so much, I had seconds for dinner! :) :

A nice end to a very pleasant day, filled with natural wonders and some little trinkets I hadn't planned on! Sometimes those are the best parts of a trip, and while that may not have been the case on this day, those little trinkets certainly added to the day and the trip as a whole.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

July 8 -- A Relaxing Day of Tubing, Waterrfalls, and the Beach

 July 8 was a calm, pleasant day. It began with breakfast at the Tip Top Cafe -- More Loco-Moco, the local favorite at a local favorite restaurant. Here are the pics of the breakfast, the menu, and the restaurant name:

Afterwards, I engaged in water tubing, going through five different tunnels. It was actually calm and relaxing, a pleasant change of pace from the previous day. Here are some pics:

Here is the company -- Kaua'i Backcountry Adventures

Oh, no! I'm about to disappear into a cave! :) :

It's all good, though...and very relaxing! :

Afterwards, after jogging on the beach, I enjoyed a fish sandwich at Kalapaki Joe's

Before hiking to a scenic waterfall:

And just a nice relaxing walk along the beach, a bit of down time:

Before my dinner at Hukilau Lanai:

With live entertainment in the outside lobby of the hotel in which the restaurant was located:

Another top-notch salad:

And traditional Hawaiian fish meal:

July 8 wasn't the most exciting day of the trip. It was the break I needed after the stress of the previous day. I enjoyed it very much -- very pleasant!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hiking the Napali Coast -- Did I have bad luck...or good luck?

As I said earlier in my blog, I had some difficult experiences on my trip. On July 7, hiking the Napali Coast, I had some difficult times. What a terrible day! Or was it? Let's review and see:

The day started out with breakfast at the Kountry Kitchen, the most popular breakfast place in town. It is a pretty place with trinkets playing homage to the local animals:

Here is my kimchee omelet -- props to the staff for helping me pick out a moderately sized meal, even though I asked about other meals which they thought were too big -- the staff's honesty is VERY much appreciated:

And here are a few pics of me hiking the coast:

The sign of what I would accomplsih:

Views of the cliffside:

Me with a large water bottle. I bought it off a stranger after poor planning on my part. I waited too long to buy water, until I hit the final opportunity before the hike -- and the store was closed! I knocked on the nearest door, and was sold the water by a kind stranger, who also told me to hike carefully in the wet weather...oh, were those prophetic words:

And that's the end of my pictures from the coast -- because that was the end of my camera! When I reached a beach, halfway to a waterfall I had intended to hike to, I had to wade through waist deep water. I forgot to lift my camera and cell phone above my head, or somehow keep them from the water, and both died. I replaced them on the trip, but it was quite a loss, and I regret not being able to take pictures.

I tried to hike on to the waterfall, but I kept falling. It was raining, the ground was slippery, and I was hiking through lots and lots of water, soaking wet and uncomfortable. I finally came to this conclusion -- my camera had died, my cell phone had died, and the next thing that my die would be me! So I finally had just enough wisdom to turn back.

I rushed to get back. I eat on a time schedule, and I wanted to get to a restaurant and eat on schedule. I guess that's part of my obsession with food. It could have cost me. I fell a number of other times, hitting my chin in the process. A woman who saw me fall asked if I was aware of what had happened -- obviously, she thought I might have hit my skull! That would have been much worse!

I can't remember if I had the next experience before or after lunch, but it is worth mentioning -- after I started driving, I was delayed by something. At first, I was annoyed -- then I saw what it was. A man was sprawled on the streets! I stopped said I wanted to help, but was told the situation was being dealt with.

My purpose in describing this is to express my conflict over my Na Pali Coast experience. I was angry and depressed about what had happened. I was angry at the concierge from the hotel, who indicated she knew nothing about such difficulties as waist deep water, both before and after the hike, when I spoke with her. I was angry at my own stupidity, not taking care of my electronics. And I was depressed about my losses, and how they were avoidable. This was obviously a bad experience, right?

Or was it? I was blessed by my Higher Power with just enough wisdom to keep myself from serious injury. I had some nice moments on the hike. And if that wasn't enough, I could compare myself to the man sprawled on the street -- I wasn't injured, like he was, and I hadn't hit my head, as the kind woman observing me fall had been concerned about. Maybe this was a better experience than it first appeared.

I am not including my lunch meal here -- perspective aside, I can't praise a restaurant that makes me take a menu to my seat and get my own water, even if the food was decent. I only acknowledge the positive experiences with others by name, so the restaurant, the hotel, and the concierge will remain anonymous.

But my dinner restaurant later that day -- The Bull Shed -- was notable for more than a cool name. Here are pics from my meal -- scrumptious fish and a nice salad, again:

By this time, I had replaced my camera and cell phone. I was moving on, as best as I could, from what was a depressing experience. I was alive and was still on vacation in Hawaii, with three days to go. Life was not all that terrible. Thank You to my Higher Power for everything.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Back to Hawaii

It's been awhile since I posted. Sorry dear readers -- began working a second job recently. When last I posted, I was getting ready to leave Maui for K'auai.

I arrived in K'auai adventurous as always. But it was difficult to just run and do things. My first day was kind of quiet. Some themes for my time on the island emerged on this first day, however.

I had my first meal at the Olympic Cafe. Here I am with my yummy Thai Peanut Butter Wrap, with the beautiful background.

I thought the K'auai roosters were cool:

At least initially, the scenery was beautiful -- here is one of the many island waterfalls...:

More beautiful water scenery:

 Not pictured were my next stops. I bought a refrigerator magnet of the serenity prayer -- In Hawaiian dialect! Then I had a nighttime walk along the beach -- the pictures did not come out well. This was before my evening meal, at Duke's. The restaurant was open the latest, meeting my dietary, times meals in that manner. I was told good things about Duke's. It did not disappoint. I really liked this pond, with the fish, right in the bar area:

I was told the salad bar was a treat in itself -- and it was! Here is my salad, which I enjoyed immensely:

And here is my yummy fish dinner -- Opah, I think:

My server, Caleb, wanted to be in the picture...what was I gonna say, no?

On my last day in Hawaii, I would return to Duke's for a second -- and third -- meal (I needed a meal for the plane). These pictures should tell the story as to why! :)