Doin’ pretty fine

Lava rock means not a lot of sandy beaches. But it sure is pretty.

For my New Mexico friends, parts of Kona I have seen so far (the non-ocean part) reminds me of The Valley of Fire in New Mexico. Black, stark, and really beautiful.

Humid. Obscenely so. But warm.

The morning vog (volcanic fog) has moved on and it promises to be a gorgeous day.

Thoughts from a westbound plane

I’m aware that since I’m in “airplane mode” that by the time I actually manage to get this posted, I’ll no longer be ON a plane, simply working my new six-day life as an island girl.

That said, as of right now, the moment my fingers fly across the keys of my battered MacBook, I have a lot of thoughts about this exceedingly westbound plane.

First. Looking out the window is boring.

We’re flying so freaking high that all I can see are clouds. And I know that if I didn’t see clouds, I’d see only ocean. A lot of ocean.

I think I’d rather see clouds. If I consider the vast miles of ocean, and me up here in a sardine can with wings, I might go a little buggy. Since this here flight is due to last some five hours, that’s a LOT of spare time in which to go buggy.

So I’ll refrain.


When did the airlines start cheaping out so much? Remember when you’d receive packets of snacks for no charge? And headphones too so you could watch the movie as you slide down the window shade and try to imagine the patchwork quilty American Midwest below your feet instead of vast chilly salty waters?

Remember when you didn’t have to have a credit card so you could check your luggage?

Remember when the flight attendants and crew were actually nice?

Remember when people used to dress up to travel?

Ah. Memories of a bygone era.

My white-haired Irish grandmother in a fur collared overcoat and perfect lipstick descending the metal stairs from a plane parked outside the Albuquerque International Airport. Impossibly glamorous to a sun browned hick kid from the desert.

It left a lasting impression.

On to the next thoughts…I get it that I’m going to a tourist destination. Sure. But the abject marketing of product at every turn is a bit more than I can take.

Sure, money makes the world go round. But it’s also what got my ass elevated to 35,000 feet. I’ve paid my dues already. Haven’t I?

As they play this “Hawai’ian Skies” video highlighting all the charms of my destination, they keep pausing to play Hawaiian Airlines ads. I give. You got me. I’m here. You have my money. I don’t. Quit marketing to me!

Oh no, but there’s a Hilo Hattie coupon on my food tray, an on-flight magazine chock-a-block full of “Buy this! See this! Do this! Only this many dollars!”

Dude. Mr. Jones took most of my money. I’m doin’ what I can already!

Next thought.

When I sat down, there was this young punk looking kid at the other end of the row. Like straight outta Compton-wannabe-ville. You know the type. Hat turned, thick gold-plated zirconium bling, chest bowed out fussin’ and fumin’.

I thought “oh geez…five hours with this?”

Until across the aisle plopped down a mom and a dad.

How hard must it be to represent when mommy and daddy just bought you a turkey sandwich so little Johnny won’t be hungry?


Click, click…what next?

Here’s a thought. If you are *going* to Hawaii and while on the plane you are wearing a tee shirt that *says* Hawaii…then I’m pretty sure you are a tourist.

I’m just sayin’.

The guy pulling this stunt is huge and sort of angry looking. So I won’t say.

But I’ll think it. Ooooh I’ll think it real good.

One woman is also already wearing coconut smelling lotion or sunscreen or something. She smells like the swimming pool at the Dunes in Vegas, and not in a good way (The Dunes, RIP, you were a fabulous schlocky hotel).

Can ya wait to get there to put that crap on? Evidently no.


I read a pretty interesting article in the in flight magazine about a guy who grows avocados in Hawaii. Evidently these local avocados are delightful.

The article mentioned that your traditional California Hass avocado is about 8% fat and the Hawaiian avocado is more like 25% fat.

The grower said, “it’s like eating butter.”

Where can I sign up?

Evidently most groceries in Hawaii ship in California Hass. You can’t get the local stuff (it’s looked down upon, oddly).

Maybe there will be a farmer’s market nearby? The grower mentioned in the article lives near where I’m headed.

Journey to a Good Avocado.

Now THAT is worth the trip.

Next thought.

Hawaiian words. Will I be expected to know them and use them?

Will I be branded a moron for not knowing the vernacular?

Mele Kaliki Maka is about my limit. Thanks Bing for putting that one into my brain. I imagine saying Merry Christmas to the locals won’t put me in any good stead.

Mahalo. I can probably work that one.

But what about aloha? When does one use that? It’s sort of a one size fits all word. Is there ever a wrong time to use it? Will I whip out an aloha and get frowny eyes in return?

Is it like when the pimply web designer at work tries to talk Spanish to the girl who makes espresso drinks? She tolerates him mangling her native tongue because, why bother correcting him, really.

What’s the right way not to insult locals? To attempt the language or to refrain?

It is to wonder.


Well. I’m only two hours into this flight. Not even half way. My right leg is already bouncing and I’m itching to stand.

Have I mentioned I actually dislike flights that go more than a couple hours? When I went to New York, I was so worried about my buggy feelings that I packed an art project to keep me busy. Worked pretty well, actually. My seat mate wasn’t too impressed with my cross-stitch craftsmanship, but what’s a cranky businessman got to do with it?

I brought along a book. After hearing, well, EVERYONE talking about this young adult series “Twilight“, I thought I’d give it a whirl.

I’m a veteran of the “young adult” genre, Harry Potter, Pullman’s “His Dark Materials” series (from which the movie “The Golden Compass” was born), and more.

All the ladies of about my age range are twittering about “Twilight”. A vampire love story, I believe.

It’s a thick tome, some 481 pages. I thought that would be sufficient to fascinate me for five hours.

And if that worked, I wouldn’t be writing this, now would I?

Final thought.

I have to pee.

Man I hate peeing on an airplane.

I can hold it for three hours or I can just cowboy up and get ‘er done.

Not the most erudite way to end this missive.

Ah well. I’ll try to be a little classier when I descend from this plane in Honolulu, channeling my Irish grandma and pretending I’m actually a grownup.

Mahalo, aloha and Mele Kaliki Maka to everyone!

This just in…I have wrongly accused the coconut smelling woman. Turns out it’s the soap in the bathroom. Great…now the whole plane smells like the swimming pool at the Dunes. Ugh.

Irrefutable evidence

That there is my actual hand putting my actual absentee ballot into the actual mailbox.

I will be in Hawaii for Election Day, or rather will be traveling home from Hawaii, so I won’t really be able to keep an eye on the results.

Either way, it will be newsworthy.

But there you have it. I voted.

Now it’s your turn.

I won’t tussle over your opinion versus mine. All I ask is that you make your opinion known.


Something to look forward to

I believe in life it’s always important to have something you are looking forward to. Something that helps get your heinie out of bed in the morning so you can slog through another day.

A reason to prevail.

It can be just about anything. Heck, some folks are looking to the weekend. Others to seeing their kids at the end of the day. Everyday stuff is good, no doubt, but I’m talking the big stuff. The “ohmygoshIcanhardlywait” kind of stuff.

For me this year, it was about the wedding. Yeah, that was a doozy. A real big something to look forward to, and man did it deliver.

I remember walking on the beach with my fresh-out-of-the-package husband on the evening after our morning wedding, and I said to him “you know, we need to find something new to look forward to.”

He told me to shush up and enjoy our wedding day, and I did. Soon enough, though, he was saying it too, “we need a new something to look forward to.”

Well, we got one. Yup. Two weeks. Hawaii.

Bam! (said with all the Emeril flair I can muster)

I have never been and it’s almost like a fairy tale to this New Mexico kid to even think about going.

Sure, yeah, economic crisis, yipes, and all of that. But hey, I’m doing MY part for the economy.

The weather in the Bay Area is starting to turn decidedly frosty. The usually standoffish Feline has taken to cuddling *right* on up with her heat-producing humans. Blankets have come out of closets.

And in just two weeks, I’ll be where it’s 80 degrees and in an island state of mind.

Oh. Yeah.

And I’ll come back just in time to start my new job at a new company.

All that added up…not a terrible “something to look forward to.”