Favorite Local Beach

Aloha!
Keawakapu beach, in Kihei (south Maui) is one of our very favorite beaches. We have spent many lazy Sunday mornings there, as lots of locals do. The Hawaiian word Keawakapu means forbidden cave. It is pronounced with the “w” sounding as a “v”, just like the town of Haleiwa on Oahu is pronounced Ha-lay-eeee-vah.
It’s pretty low-key, especially on a Sunday. The best part, to me, is the shade trees:
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A wise person told me, soon after I moved to Maui, that “Hawaii is best done in the shade.” As a newbie, of course I thought he was nuts. Then all I did was look for shade!

It is an expansive beach, which is good,
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because on crowded days, you can barely get past all the sun umbrellas in the sand, and people picking their guitars and singing. It’s just a happy place to hang out. One interesting thing about the beach is that there is a reef around 400 yards from the shore made from 150 car bodies which were dumped in the year 1962.
The beach is adjacent to the Mana Kai hotel. There is Zack’s Deli, a good place to grab a wrap for lunch. And if you’re willing to part with some cash, there is the Five Palms Restaurant, with covered outdoor seating, a spiffy bar, and a really lovely dining room. (It used to be our go-to for special occasions, but then the prices got to be more than as locals we were willing to spend.) I still miss the days of $8.95 crab cakes there for brunch!

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I really love a comfortable, quiet restaurant with booths, and this one can have spectacular whale-watching in the winter.

So check out Keawakapu beach and let me know your experience. You can rent boogie boards, stand-up paddle boards, and kayaks. There’s great snorkeling too, so there’s really something for everyone.

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Aloha, Jamaica

Aloha, Dogs and Cats

Aloha!
Thinking of bringing a dog or kitty to Hawaii? Well for starters, be sure to Google all the hoopla surrounding Johnny Depp trying to smuggle his dogs into Australia on his private jet. You don’t want to go THERE!

I myself postponed moving to Hawaii because of my aged kitty. This was back before a 5-day quarantine even existed…it was 120 days. For those of you not familiar, it’s because Hawaii does not have rabies, that all animals must be quarantined. I have heard so many stories of people determined to move to Hawaii who had to have one, two or three pets shut up in quarantine cells on Oahu… people who would fly over from Maui just to visit their pets. And what depressed pets they were, also!

So the good news is, if you are planning to move and have pets, you can get it down to a five – day quarantine if you follow all the policies and procedures.
Here is the website: http://www.hawaiiag.org.
A puppy or kitten will be about 10 months of age by the time all the preparations are completed. Puppies and kittens not able to meet all of the requirements for the five – day – or less program will be quarantined for 120 days.
This site offers FAQs, a dog and cat import form, and a Hawaii Rabies Quarantine Information Brochure,which contains important information about pre-arrival requirements, quarantine stations, procedures, policies, rules, operations and fees.
There are ways to possibly do a direct airport release, but note: due to limitation in interisland service on the weekend, pets arriving on Thursday or Friday may not be transferred to satellite quarantine stations and approved hospitals on neighbor islands till the following Monday.

You can email your questions to: rabiesfree@hawaii.gov

Miss Lili says follow the rules….
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…and have a happy move to Hawaii with your pets!

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Aloha! Jamaica

Has the Rest of the Country Caught Up With Hawaii?

Aloha!
So we get into a cab at the airport on Maui, and it looks a bit like a traveling circus wagon. The driver nods a lot and laughs a lot, as there is a language barrier.
But she certainly understands the local way in Hawaii, according to a worn, printed sticker on the passenger door:
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It says (in pidgin)
8 am Supposed to start work
8:14 We come dragging in
9 to 10 am COFFEE BREAK
10:30 to 11 am We “talk story”
12 noon KAU KAU…time for eat
1 to 3 pm Rest up from lunch
3 to 4 o’clock Coffee Break
4 to 4:30 Shoot da bull on da phone
5 pm. PAU HANA!! Time for quit work

When you move to Hawaii, one of the adjustments is the sssllllooow pace. Things get done when they get done, regardless of your schedule.
But maybe the rest of the country has caught on. Between checking email, surfing the web, and surreptitiously shopping online while at work, -(okay, admit it…are you reading this at work? 😁) how many mainland workers have their own version of that sticker in the taxi?

The world is becoming homogenous. Now workers can pretend that they, too, are on “Hawaii time.” Now all they need is a palm tree outside their window…

A hui hou! Thanks for reading along. If you’d like to stay in the loop, please click the “Follow” button to the right, or on the Homepage.

Aloha! Jamaica

Happy Feet (not)

Aloha!
Is there anything more delicious than the feeling of summertime, running around in shorts and flip-flops… (known as “slippahs” in the islands)?
I often say that the reason I moved to Maui was because I never wanted to wear real shoes again – – and that wasn’t much of an exaggeration. My feet and I have been at war since day one, since I wear a triple A with a quad heel. Yeah, try finding those on sale at Target. And those shoes had to house an impossibly high arch.

Flip-flops were the solution, and I had happy, happy feet…or so I thought.

As I sat in the podiatrist’s office, he took my bony little foot in his hand and said, “How long in Hawaii?”
Silly me, I thought he was just making conversation. “16 years,” I replied.
“Well, that’s the whole problem, then,” he said. He pointed to my arch, then pushed down on my foot, and it kind of squished out sideways. “Fallen arches. Flat feet…”luau feet”, they’re called here. Comes from running around barefoot, or wearing slippahs all the time. Big problem here.”

The solution is closed shoes and orthotic inserts. Not very island-friendly! In fact, anyone running around the islands in tennis shoes and socks will be suspected of being a tourist.

I had a friend who was about 4’10”, and she wore 4 inch heels her entire life. Then they bought a condo in Hawaii. They spent six weeks renovating it, and she ran around barefoot the whole time. Her arches fell within that amount of time, and she had to have surgery on her feet. Paradise lost!

As Gilda Radnor would say, “It’s always something!”

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Aloha, Jamaica

The Lure of the Islands

Aloha!
“She had loved islands from the time she spent her first summer on one. She was eight at the time. Thirty-four now, she still felt the island aura – – an isolation that made worries seem distant, a separation from the real world that lent itself to dreams.”
From “Sweet Salt Air” by Barbara Delinsky

And that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?
When I was a sophomore in high school, my family had the good fortune to spend Christmas break on one of the Florida Keys. Having left snow, sleet, and icy roads behind in the Midwest, I was immediately hooked. Why doesn’t everybody live here? I wondered. And when I first came to Maui, I wondered the same thing. But being so far from the mainland isn’t for everyone. Or how slow the pace of life is. Or how hard it is to get things. Or, and this is a biggee…the high cost of everything, particularly real estate.

So what draws those who live on islands to be there? With the pace of life today, I offer another quote, this one from Oliver Wendell Holmes: “I would not give a fig for the simplicity on this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity.”

So maybe THAT’s what it’s all about. I get letters weekly from people who want to move to Maui and have many questions. Is everyone just really trying to get to the simplicity on the other side of the complexity that our world has become?

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Aloha, Jamaica

The Things You’ll Do to Live on Maui

Aloha!

The old song says, “The things you’ll do for lo-o-ve 🎢” and the same is true of Maui. It truly can be like falling down the rabbit hole. And just like Alice, the longer you live here, the more normal it becomes. Case in point: my hairdresser. Just finding someone to do passable blonde highlights on the island ( without having to sell your car to pay for them) is a small feat. Those hotel/spa/hairdresser prices don’t fly on a Mauian’s paycheck!

My hairdresser used to work at the fancy hotel. Then at the fancy salon. Now he works out of his home, which is a postage stamp-sized Ohana (cottage) behind someone else’s house in Kihei. He could no longer afford to rent a station at the high-priced places. There is no air conditioning, so the minute he slaps that plastic gown on me, I’m sweating like a sumo wrestler. Then there’s the lighting, or rather, lack of it. I peer toward the mirror and have to squint to see myself.

But the most interesting feature is the rinse bowl. It is out in his shed… the garden shed, like, from Sears. He leads me to it through the small yard, and it is dilapidated and falling down, and feels about 50Β° hotter than his already hot house.

I close my eyes as he rinses my hair, and go to my happy place. You know, the way they say when you’re stressed, you should picture yourself on a beach or a tropical island. Oh, wait–I’m already on that island. But this is one of the ways people afford to live here.

Like Wonderland, when you live on Maui, many things are upside down, inside-out and backwards of what you’d expect. But hey, I have some affordable blonde highlights.

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Aloha, Jamaica

Waves, Whales and Wags

Aloha!

We are staying on Oahu’s North Shore with Mike’s brother and sister-in-law. It’s a time of tears and remembrances (Mike’s mom passed away last month), but also of laughter and telling stories around the kitchen table.

The North Shore is busy – – TOO busy for someone like Mike – – who remembers the old days when there was no traffic and he had surf spots practically to himself.

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Now there’s a surf contest every time you turn around,
and the daily surf lineup is fierce with competition for a wave. (I used to think surfers were mellow before I met Mike. Ha!)

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Traffic, which is one way into Haleiwa and one way out, single lanes – – (unless you’re willing to drive the looonng way around the island), is snarled and tempers flare. I’ve sat for an hour trying to go from Haleiwa (Ha-lay-ee-va) to Foodland, and that’s normally a 10–15 minute drive. The world is getting smaller, there are more and more people, and Hawaii is no exception.

As if the waves aren’t enough of a draw, there are the whales. We had all walked to the beach for sunset, lawn chairs in tow, and the sun was a brilliant orangey-red thanks to the VOG factor (volcanic organic gas). Riveting–until we noticed the whale puffs to our right…then it was like a tennis match – – faces swinging left to sunset, right to whales, back to sunset, not wanting to miss anything.

We had all swung right when two very large whales broke the water surface and did a perfectly synchronized double-breach, mid – air. Like 4th of July, the crowd oohed and ahhed. It was as if we were at Sea World watching a dolphin show, but with huge whales, in the wild, with no trainer. Mike said he had seen a double- breach maybe 30 times in his entire life in Hawaii. I had never seen it. What a special moment. No photo of course – – and if I’d had my head glued to a camera I wouldn’t have truly experienced it.

Then there are the weddings (and engagements) taking place on the beach… Flashes going off from large professional cameras and processions of barefoot dressed – up bridesmaids and beaming brides.

Lastly, the dogs, who frolic with circles of friends in the water, on the shore, and sometimes in a conga line. I half expect them to dance, they are just so darned happy to be Hawaii beach dogs.

So if you come to Oahu’s North Shore, be sure to pack your patience – – particularly if you have your heart set on the famous Matsumoto’s shave ice. The line is always out the door!

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Aloha, Jamaica