Day 35 – The Final Full Day

This was our final full day here, it pains me to type that.  We did a lot, but yet we still have much more to do, to explore to hike, and to eat.  Honestly before we left for this trip, we really thought this would be our last trip here until we retire.  We landed and we knew that thought was a joke, we were just kidding ourselves. We can’t keep ourselves away, so for all those things we didn’t do, I’m not upset, just gives us something to look forward to when we return in two years.

Today we went for a beach walk on Cannon’s. We did try to park at Ke’e first, but at 7:30 a.m. on a Sunday the lot closest to the beach was full.  I think this was our second Sunday we tried and well, no not the time to go.  So to Cannon’s we went.

We came home to  make breakfast and start the packing, laundry and cleaning of the house.

We also made a quick run into Hanalei, I wanted to pick up some cards at a store and get our last bit of poke fix in from The Dolphin.

We were expecting friends to stop in to have their first visit to Tunnels. Kelly and I met teaching, but she moved away and we haven’t seen each other in maybe 9 years, but through the magic of FB we have kept in touch.  They arrived mid afternoon and we took them to the beach, Kelly and her husband snorkeled (yes they had a great time, even swam with a turtle), while Mike and I did our last float.  It was fun for us to watch someone see Tunnels Beach for the first time and go WOW!

After they left it was back to packing, more laundry and having dinner of poke.  We headed down to the beach for our last sunset. Last night the Kauai Gods gave us a green flash, tonight they bestowed on us a beautiful after sunset glow.

Our last full day here, it was full of things we love, beach walks, time with friends, poke, and a beautiful sunset.  We are grateful to have all this.

Tomorrow our long journey home begins.  There will be no blog post tomorrow, maybe on Tuesday when we land and figure out our time zone, I will post one, but maybe not.

Day 32 – Daily Delights

I love the spontaneity of our days. We never know what little or big delight will cross our path during the day.  Today we had a few delights and last the one of the day was HUGE.

The day began with a two mile beach walk at Cannon’s beach. It wasn’t the plan to walk that much, but we just kept going, until hunger pains set in and returned home to breakfast.

After our breakfast, we made the plan to hike the Moloaa Coastal Trail. While doing some research we learned that this is a disputed trail, but luckily it is still open to hike. One blogger called it the trail to nowhere.  It does end at a fence line, but the views are dramatic and worth it to go “nowhere”.  You have to walk to the left of the bay to access the trail.  We lucked out today and had a monk seal sighting on the way to the trail head!

This was about a 1 mile walk from the car and to the end of the trail at the fence. Don’t worry, you know when you hit the end of the trail, signs inform you of it.

After our hike we jumped in the water for a quick cool off, we even tried to get the seal in our water selfie!

This is a lovely little area and one we need to spend more time at.  We had planned another adventure after this, but once again hunger pains steered us in another direction, to lunch we went.

We decided to try out The Bistro in Kilauea. Before we went there, we did have to stop by the egg place at mile marker 18 to see if they had fresh eggs. We scored, they did! Once again I got to hang out the sold out sign.

On to The Bistro we went. They had two specials, fresh caught ahi, served over soba noodles with pineapple salsa in a coconut curry sauce and a chicken sandwich (not locally caught) that had a tomato goat cheese spread with lettuce and tomatoes served with fries. To be honest Street Burger has the better fries. We decided to try both dishes and have the pineapple cobbler for dessert.  Everything was delicious and yes you might say a bit pricey, but we were ok with that.

After lunch we stopped at the soap store to pick up more surfer salve soap and a few other goodies to ship back.  Once we arrived at the house, I took my regular afternoon siesta and then we had dinner. Yes tonight we had the ahi the neighbor caught, served on grains with long beans.

After dinner a rain shower was passing through, so we decided to get a head start on tonight’s dessert, the bananas wrapped in limpia pastry, this time I drizzled dark chocolate on it.


Sunset tonight was wet, hazy and full of weddings.. Three different weddings, one came complete with a singer and hula dancer.  We had the good fortune to be treated to the couple’s first dance, the music provided by the Ukulele player singing Iz’s rendition of Over the Rainbow.  Yes, I did tear up.

When we returned home, very wet, the hughest delight was waiting for us, jackfruit.  A neighbor asked if we wanted one, we said sure, next time we will ask what size before saying yes…yikes, anyone have any recipe suggestions?

We truly had a day full of all different delights. Who knows what delights tomorrow will bring us.

Day 29 – Rainy Day on the North Shore

Note: Just go to the end, skip reading and look at the beautiful sunset photos!

We felt the effects of Fernanda today on the North Shore.  We woke to rain, some thunder and lightning. Manoa Falls which we can see from the house was raging down, at one point the water turned brown.  It was a perfect morning to do some book purchasing for my school library. I knew I would have to do some work here and was putting it off. I had no more excuses not to do it with all this rain.

While I worked Mike made me a little bright drink, papaya with red dragon fruit juice on top.


However the falls became a distraction and I only did 3/4 quarters of a book order, oh well.

After the heaviest rains diminished we went out for a bit. First stop was the transfer station to drop off the recycling.  Makes me appreciated my curbside recycling pick up at home.  However as I was putting the can returns in the bin, the workers offered me a freshly picked hand of bananas, right off the trees! Such a small gesture made me so happy and with curbside pick up you don’t get free bananas.

a piece of island life, Mike is laughing because he just sees me walking with a hand of bananas not knowing yet how I got them.

We decided to chance going to Moloaa Bay, thinking we could get parking due to the gray skies.  I needed to go to snap a few photos for a teacher friend, who always sings a “line up” song to her prek class to the tune of Gilligan’s Island theme.  We could get parking with this weather!

After our brief walk, we headed back into Hanalei for lunch at the Dolphin.  Yup, we had our usual of house salad and fish tacos.  Works for us, fills us up and tastes yummy!


Our next stop was a little shop we like in Hanalei.  Glad we decided to stop in because the parking provided us a lovely view of the waterfalls.

After driving past Waipa, we noticed how brown the water was in Hanalei Bay area.  Going slow I was able to take a few pictures.

On our way home we stopped at SushiGirl to pick up dinner for tonight. Mike ordered the special and I choose the “Action” poke bowl.

We really needed a beach walk after sitting around the house and car this morning.  So we dropped the goods off at the house and headed to Cannons to do a small beach walk.  Of course it started to rain, but it didn’t matter to us.

After our brief jaunt, we spent the rest of the late afternoon catching up with the world and having dinner.

Sunset tonight after all this rain was spectacular.  Truly worth all the rain today!

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Day 7 – From Burnt Toast to Burnt Toes

The morning started with burnt toast. It really wasn’t my fault, it was the rainbow’s fault, it distracted me.


We took it as a sign to go for a beach walk, before continuing breakfast.  Hopping in the car, we drove a short way up to Cannons Beach, just past Haena Beach Park.  The hidden flora entrance has been relocated from six years ago, but we found it.  We followed the tunneled path to one of my favorite walking spots.


The views here always take my breath away. Makai sky was filled with gray clouds and the mauka sky was brilliant blues, a contrast in colors.

As usual with a Kauai sky it rapidly changes.

Returning to the house I attempted breakfast making again. This time I was successful, not burning anything.  We enjoyed sautéed swiss chard (from yesterday’s farmer’s market) and fried eggs with a side of unburnt toast smeared in mango jelly.

Breakfast time included making more grocery lists and we headed out to pick up a few more supplies.  We did get stuck sitting in traffic, waiting for one lane bridges to be safe to pass. We didn’t care when the views are beautiful.


We stopped for lunch today at Hanalei Dolphin.  There was room at the bar for us. We split fish tacos and a house salad.  Perfect light lunch to share.


We decided to spend some of our afternoon on the beach.  I debated between wearing flip flops or  my water shoes.  I should have gone with the water shoes.  On our last trip here, after we hiked part of the Kalalau trail, we took off our shoes, walked across the sand to get in the water at Kee Beach.  At 2 p.m. in the afternoon the sand was so hot, I burned the bottom of both feet, they peeled like crazy.   Today, I went with flip flops, mistake for my sensitive toes. I burned each of my big toes in the sand.  The healing thing  to do was to get them in the water and float for a bit.

Following the float we walked back to the house and prepped dinner and dessert.

I even had time to squeeze in a little nap before dinner.  Dinner was simple fresh local greens with local veggies, even peppers grown by the neighbor thrown in, topped with Mike’s marninated Kauai Shrimp. Dessert turned out to be very good, next time I’m going to fill the sheets with sliced bananas.


We had a bit of time before sunset viewing, so I decided to go on an orchid hunt in the yard.  I was blown away by our friend’s gift for gardening.

Sunset viewing hour was upon us and off we ambled to Tunnels Beach.  Clouds hid the sun hitting the ocean, but having fisherman in the water provided us with another type of wonderful viewing.

Today I burned the toast, I burned the bottom layer of my toes, but hey at least I didn’t fry myself sitting in the sun!

Day 23 – Just another day in paradise

Today was one of those days that started off very slowly.  Big cups of coffee sipped slowly, a long breakfast of goodies to nibble on and rainbows to watch appear.


We followed this up by a long walk on Cannons beach, searching for shells and taking pictures. We had to park in a different spot today, so the way down to the beach was a bit more treacherous and like I said earlier, I was moving slow.

I'm trying hard not to trip

Mike watched crabs play in a tidepool for a bit,

crab play time

while I wandered around looking for shells.  I had one great find today.

my shell find

Mike then worked on taking some artsy photos.

beach art
rock art
the view

After we meandered around, we settled on hanging out at Tunnels for a bit of time to catch some sun rays.

Morning slowly melted into the afternoon and the pace picked up just a tiny bit.  We went to the Waipa’s Farmer’s Market.  After having a mellow morning, seeing so many people jostling for fresh produce was too much for me to take in.  I didn’t enjoy my experience as much as I usually do because people were pushy and rude. Ok, maybe I was a bit oversensitive because I’ve adapted well to island time and attitude.

We did have a new fruit introduced to us.  I’m not saying what it is because I will be featuring it in my facebook “name that fruit contest” for friends.

a very delicious fruit and new to us

We than stopped at Hanalei Dolphin for some fresh ahi for dinner.  Ahhhh grilled ahi and vegetables from the market for dinner.  How pono it was. Sorry we ate it before we could snap a photo.

After dinner Mike picked me a plumeria and we strolled to the other sunset beach we like.

I love plumeria

While waiting for the sun to set, Mike worked on some more artsy photos.

white flower, so fragrant

As Mike was working on his photos, I made a new friend tonight.  He was a bit crabby and I don’t think I cheered him up.

My new friend

We watched the sunset and then Mike went into total relaxation.

Mike is relaxed

As we entered the yard, the light was lovely and played with the sliver of the moon nicely.  It was a perfect scene to end the evening.

moon glow

Tomorrow our pace ramps up.  We have behind the scenes tour planned at Allerton and McBryde Gardens, followed by lunch out, then a hike along the southern coast and since we are south a stop at the coffee plantation.  Ok, that makes me tired just thinking about all that activity.


Day 11 – A Simple Day

We slept in today, after yesterday’s hike we needed it.  We drove to Cannon’s Beach for an early morning beach-combing expedition and really to get our muscles moving again.

Entrance to Cannons

Last year this was a great beach to shell on, not so much this year.

I'm looking....

This is all I came up with.

Not much in terms of good shells

While I was off shelling, Mike was working on artsy photos.

blown sand

Unfortunately as we left the beach,  we discovered a dead Newell’s Shearwater Bird. It was disheartening to see this threatened species dead.

Dead Newell's Shearwater

After we trudged home, we ate breakfast and hit Hanalei Center and Princeville for some shopping. We did stop at Hanalei Dolphin market for poke, a sushi roll and tonight’s fish for dinner opah.

After lunch, we went to Hanalei Bay to watch our friend, Eric , in a photo shoot for Columbia Sportswear.  While we wanted for the fun to begin, we snapped a few pictures of the pier and surroundings.

Used in the photo shoot later

Eric warmed up on his fabulous new board from Boga,

Mike and Eric chatting
Eric out paddling

While this was going on, I just tried to blend into the scene.

I'm trying to blend in

After Eric’s warm up it was time for him to go into wardrobe. He is modeling the spring 2012 line.  Remember he is modeling, this is not his choice of wardrobe.

Eric in wardrobe
Eric comes in

We didn’t stick around for the actual shoot, as we know it could be an all day affair.  It was fun to be there and watch the start of his new career, adventure sport clothes model.

We created an amazing dinner of grilled vegetables from the farmer’s market (zukes, onion, tomatoes, garlic), placed it on a bed of arugula and then topped it marinated lilikoi grilled opah, can you say mouth-watering heaven?


And you guessed it, we followed everything up with the sunset.


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