In March, 2006, Kailua-Kona had the privilege of having the RMS Queen Mary (QM2) sail into our harbor.
Fortunately, I happened to be in Kona that day getting my car serviced. I took the picture above from the back yard of the King Kamehameha Hotel in downtown Kona.
As I sat on the outside deck of the Kona Public Library sipping a coffee drink, I took this picture. It shows the difference between the QM2 and one of the regular cruise ships that visit us.
Later, as I waited to get the oil changed on my car, I took this photo from the dealership. There was a great deal of excitement in our little village of Kona that day.
When the RMS Queen Mary 2 was constructed, she was the “longest, widest and tallest passenger ship ever built.” Even though she no longer holds that distinction, she is a fantastic ship and I hope to take a cruise on her someday! For more you can read here and here.
We may not get snow, and Santa may be wearing his surfer shorts, but here in Hawaii, we do everything we can to create a holiday atmosphere. Tiny ukekeles adorn this holiday wreath.
A stroll through any of the hotel lobbies in Waikiki definitely needs to be on your agenda, if you want to experience the true Hawaiian Christmas spirit! Each hotel has its own unique way of decorating.
The Moana Surfrider Hotel, built in 1901, has an interesting history. Click on this link to read about it and thumb through pages with old pictures of Waikiki from its beginning. Their Christmas display in the lobby includes a snowy version of the hotel.
This shot of their Christmas tree gives you a glimpse of the interior.
Outside, lights swirl around the stately columns.
Across the street, you’ll find another charming display in the Princess Kaiulani Hotel lobby. What a delightful snowy village in Hawaii! This hotel was built on the estate of Hawaii’s last princess, Kaiulani.
I wrote about the Royal Hawaiian Hotel earlier this fall. The tree outside that hotel towers over shoppers and sightseeing visitors to our wonderful state.
Aloha! I should have checked the map better before I posted on Saturday. See original post.
As we were flying out of Kahului over Haleakala, I took a shot of an island just below us. In my post, I questioned whether it was Lana`i or Moloka`i. It didn’t seem to be in the right place for either island. It wasn’t shaped like Lana`i, but didn’t seem to be quite right for Moloka`i.
After several emails back and forth with one of my readers, I realized it is Kaho`olawe, an island I rarely remember to think about. (Do you see me blushing?)
Of the eight primary volcanic islands that make up our state, it is the smallest. It has a fascinating history and I suggest you check it out more closely at this website, complete with pictures and the role played by the Kahoʻolawe Island Reserve Commission in preserving the Native Hawaiian culture.
Watch for next weekend’s post on another annual local event – Black & White Night in Hilo.
Five years of my life were spent living on my 37’ O’Day sloop-rigged sailboat. It was something I’d dreamed of ever since I was a young girl. I remember reading many books about sailing and people living on boats, even though I’d never really been on a boat.
There are a few stories of my life of being a “liveaboard” on an old blog of mine. I sold that boat just a few years before I moved to Hawai`i, and I still miss it!
So when Judy Jones asked me to do a memorial service at sea for her husband, Bob, I jumped at the chance. Judy is a close friend, as well, and I assisted with the organization of a beautiful send-off out of the Honokohau Harbor here on the Kona side of the Big Island. Bob suffered a fatal heart attack while he was fishing on Christmas Island.
Here are a few pictures I took of that trip out into the Pacific Ocean when I wasn’t busy officiating. This first one shows some of the boats in the harbor as we pulled out.
This was the first time I’d seen Honokohau Harbor from the ocean side of the entrance. There is a mountain behind all that mist. We’d had small craft warnings all week. Then on the day of the service, it was calm and beautiful.
Here are a few more shots of the harbor from the ocean side. I probably should have put these into a collage, but I prefer looking at the bigger pictures of the ocean!
Friends joined us on their boats. When we were about five miles out, we had the ceremony and tossed leis into the water. The boats circled the leis several times, then headed back to the harbor. A beautiful Hawai`ian ritual! I wasn’t able to get a picture of that because I was in the process of officiating. I’ll need to leave that part to your imagination.
The skipper of the boat I was on had been Bob’s fishing partner on Christmas Island when Bob had his heart attack. He helped with the funeral the local Christmas Islanders held for Bob, and he placed Bob’s trusty fishing pole on top of the casket.
When we got back to shore, there was a huge potluck feast for everyone. It was a moving and yet joyous celebration of Bob’s life. He was well-loved by many.
There are many reasons why I am anxious to see Barack Obama inaugurated as our 44th President of the United States.
And there are two reasons that stand out strongly for me. One is that he was the Senator from Illinois, the state where I was born, raised, educated through high school. The other is that his background is the state of Hawai`i where I now live and work.
This man eats Spam musubi, as well as fresh ahi (tuna) sushi and sashimi. Not only is he a great speaker and orator, but he can talk and understand Hawai`ian Pidgin. He’s our man, one who knows how to body surf.
Now he will be the man for our country. May we all give him a chance to make changes that are greatly needed. May we all give him our full support, whether we always agree with him or not. It will take time to accomplish the miracles we expect of him.