Thursday, October 14

Bumper Stickers – Hawaiian Style

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This is a popular bumper sticker we saw often on the North Shore. It’s the local’s way of saying they don’t want any more resorts, hotels, freeways, or apartment buildings built. Keep the country….Local!

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This one is probably even more common, Hawaiian Kingdom.

This homemade billboard is on somebody’s fence right along the Farrington Highway, which pretty much sums up what the Hawaiian Kingdom stickers are for.

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In case you can’t read it, the gist of it is: Shame on everyone who bought into the American philosophy. Anyone who accepts America as their statehood is basically working with the enemy. America has taken away their inherent sovereignty. Shame on those that celebrate Statehood and honor the thieves. Thieves that locked up their Queen. Stole their land and beat their ancestors for speaking their native tongue.

Someone asked me recently how the Hawaiians felt about America, or Americans. I hate to admit it, but once you get out of the tourist areas, the above is the general feeling we perceive. I always felt like I stood out, and wasn’t very welcome, but I just put on my rosy glasses and went about my business. I had no proof and some could say it was just my imagination but when I got on an elevator a little while ago and a woman looked at me, then gasped, and said…”wow. a blondie. we don’t see many of them around here.” I knew it wasn’t just in my imagination now. Eventually I broke down the cashiers at the local grocery store and had them laughing with me on occasion, but overall it felt like we were living in a foreign country. I can now say we know a little bit how it feels to be the minority and face discrimination. and it wasn’t very comfortable.

Who knows how many really feel that way, I know it wasn’t the majority, since the majority are mainland transplants anyway, but in the country and heavy Islander populated areas, it’s not uncommon to see Hawaiian Parking Only signs and We were born here, You flew here signs.

Of course, this was more of a silent prejudice for the most part, besides… it was much more fun to find and focus on the good, the beauty, and the funny:

SLR Lanikai 115 *If you don’t get it, just ask.

Wednesday, October 13

White Plains Beach

Annie had been telling us about White Plains Beach for months now, so before we left the island we had to check it out. I didn’t really have any expectations about this beach but she said it’s great for surfing, so we loaded up our two longboards, her SUP, and made our way south for the summer swells. It had been flat all summer on the west coast, so this was Jake’s first chance to surf in months. He was going to use my board but as he was carrying it down to the beach he jumped off a short cement block retaining wall (because I told him to go that way) and as he jumped down the back of the board hit the top of the wall and cracked open! I did the exact same thing my first time carrying that board down to the beach. You’d have thought I’d already learned that lesson. It was a major buzz kill, but Jake attempted Joey’s big ten footer anyway and while it was way too big for him, the boy surfed! and I didn’t get any pictures! but that’s not why he likes it anyway.
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Unlike the reef beaches we’d been surfing on this one has a soft sandy bottom, so I was really looking forward to surfing myself but between my cracked board, and Jonas’ foul mood, I wasn’t up for it. Instead I boogie boarded with Jewel for a while and then set off to get a few photos.
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I walked over closer to this fence thinking I could try to get a shot of Diamondhead through a chainlink.
White Plains 028 And after I get one uninspiring picture that way I look down and see these guys sleeping right in front of me!White Plains 017
Two Hawaiian Monk Seals. Funny how my mood instantly brightened.White Plains 018
There was a man there from a monk preservation society who was making sure no one molested them, and to answer any questions people may have, and to just basically educate. While most people spent a couple minutes taking pictures, and then going back to the beach, Jewel stayed there for probably forty five minutes just soaking up everything he had to say and waiting for this Dad and his Daughter to wake up. They never did, but it was still exciting to be so close to these guys in their natural habitat. The thing Jewel remembers most was the story of how the big one (Dad) got bit by a shark and was able to make himself stop bleeding. Apparently they have a way of cutting off blood flow to wounded areas. Pretty cool.
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White Plains gets a two thumbs up but I would definitely recommend not going on the weekend.
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I like my beaches a little less crowded.

Tuesday, October 12

Pearl Harbor

Seeing the U.S.S. Arizona is another one of those must do things when visiting Oahu. I had already been there back in ‘02 with Joey and Jewel (then a baby) so I hadn’t really given much thought to going again, then I remembered the boys had never been. And it’s FREE. Now the boys weren’t too excited but after I told them all about the fabulous on site museum, they agreed to go. My friend Annie was supposed to join us, but she couldn’t make it last minute so we just went on ahead anyway. To tell you the truth, I actually prefer things like this without any guests anyway….more focus on the kids.

For once we made it there without getting lost, except that once for directions, only to end up in parking lot hell. Most visitors go by bus so the parking lot is small, and right off the bat I had a tourist steal my parking space I had been waiting for. I wanted to go all Kathy Bates on him but he wouldn’t have understood me anyway so I just continued circling and waiting. Then it happened again! Now it’s just comical so we’re waiting for a third time, but luckily no more thievery and we were finally able to park. We got in, got our ticket for the ferry with thirty minutes to spare to tour the museum…only the museum is closed for construction. Major bummer. We walk over to the U.S.S. Missouri Battleship and decide after the Arizona tour we’ll get tickets and climb aboard it. 

Pearl Harbor 007 First, we have to walk over to the ferry that’s going to shuttle us out to the sunken ship. It’s just a short walk, but nice views of Pearl Harbor, Ford Island Bridge, and that huge golf ball on stilts that I still haven’t figured out what the heck it is, or when it floated in.

Pearl Harbor 009 It was a pretty hot wait for the ferry, and to amuse myself I secretly took pictures of the tourists and Jonas.Pearl Harbor 019

Jewel is very nervous to get on a moving boat. We visited with a cruising family, S/V Capaz,  while they were in island briefly making their way from the South Pacific to Canada, and Jewel was happy to feel the relative calmness of the yacht in harbor, but she’s anxious to see what it feels like in motion.

 Pearl Harbor 025 I couldn’t tell her this ferry ride is nothing like a sailboat

Pearl Harbor 026 I was happy to see these wheelchair clamps on the ferry, knowing that my friend Harli and all her other Angel friends get to see this piece of history up close, and unhindered, just like the rest of us.

 Pearl Harbor 045 Getting off the ferry onto the platform the Captain instructed everyone to go straight into the memorial building and not to STOP to take ANY pictures from this dock. I can’t stand to be told NOT to do something. Pearl Harbor 052 This one is from inside the memorial building, looking toward Pearl. That’s the looong Ford Island Bridge in the background. We tried to drive on it only to be turned around at the gate with a stern “This is a military base Ma’am!” I didn’t even get to tell him we just wanted to go to the museum!

Proof I had all three kids with me. And No, I didn’t notice they were all in blue until just now.Pearl Harbor 061 We were getting a little, umm…bored at this point. So I took a cue from Tiffani, one of my favorite photographers, and decided to punch things up a bit.

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Pearl Harbor 073 Pearl Harbor 086I have a picture of Jewel in front of this anchor( it was in a different location then) when she was a baby, but darnit, can’t find it right now.

 Pearl Harbor 090 It was a hot day, and by the time we got done with the Arizona tour we were no longer as interested in checking out the Missouri so decided to find some lunch instead. I ended up finding a parking garage so assumed there was a mall attached to it, with a food court, but even better was an extra long moving ramp. With no security in sight. The kids had a blast on the moving ramp and declared that the highlight of the day.

We topped off the day at this gorgeous little roadside park.

Pearl Harbor 092 Pearl Harbor 098 The T at the end is hollow, and inside is where Jonas can be found, while Jake supervises.

Sun. Sand. Surf……. So this is what pure bliss feels like.

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