Well we were on the road by 11:30 AM to go to the Hilo side after getting gas and stuff.
Our first stop was in Waimea to go to the bathroom at Starbucks. Haha. I can’t even tell you how pretty Waimea looked from the road. Rolling green hills with clouds above them. It looked fake! After this we went to Waipio lookout. It was beautiful. There’s a cove where there’s a little town that farms taro and poi. You can hike down because all the beach in Hawaii is public access, but it would have been strenuous, and we didn’t plan for such a thing. It takes an hour to get down there, so getting back up (uphill) would have been cruel and unusual punishment. So the view out was lovely. The ocean as far off as you could see became a sudden dark blue, and then it broke into the sky. It was pretty amazing.
After taking our photographs, we went to Laupahoehoe National Park. The waters were rough, but it was gorgeous. There was huge lava rock everywhere. The forest over to the right was really scenic and fake looking. I guess there was a huge tsunami a long time ago that took out a bus with students in it. :( So there was a memorial for them.
I think it was at this point that we went to this place that hand makes these malasadas, or donuts. I got two—one plain and one with chocolate cream filling (it was basically pudding). They were quite good, and don’t worry, I didn’t eat them both at once.
Then we headed to Akaka Falls. We hiked down to the right and looked at a smaller set of falls. Then it takes you in a circle to see the real, big falls. It was lovely—what a waterfall should look like. We headed back up and I got pictures of wild bananas growing. Too bad none were wild, or I’d have taken one! There were a lot of streams in the area too which looked and sounded so pretty.
Then we spent some time in the little town afterward. I got some cookies at a bakery. I got a present for my grandpa—a hand carved wooden honu (turtle) which can be used either as wall décor, or as a cooling pad thing for pots and pans. He likes to cook. Honus symbolize long life. We also stopped at a jewelry shop where this guy hand carves lava to make into jewelry. My friend wanted “lava,” so I actually got him a hand carved piece of lava rock, and watched this dude make it into a keychain right in front of me. It was freaking awesome! The street with all these shops was so cute. The picture doesn’t do it justice.
After we left Akaka Falls we headed to Rainbow Falls more into Hilo. A guy was sitting on top of the waterfall which was pretty sweet. There were rotting mangos everywhere, and it smelled like sulfur and rotten eggs. It was nasty. But the falls were pretty. I wanted to follow the stairs up to wherever they went, but a tourist bus arrived, putting a damper on the possibilities.
We headed to the Wailuku River Boiling Pots. They were not, in fact, boiling. It was relatively stagnant green water with a little bit of flowing in some spots. They do look like pots in that a lot of the water ponds are separate from each other. We got adventurous and climbed down a little bit in our flip flops. We took pictures, and Krystle went farther than I did. I was content where I was. She didn’t get far anyway! :) When we climbed back up, Krystle flip flop slipped off, getting her a good gash on her toe—battle wounds. She also got a scratch on her knee. We took pictures. Don’t worry, I’ll post them soon. I know you’re excited.
So since Krystle didn’t want to get an infection, we didn’t go to the ponds on the Hilo side. I called my great uncles (my grandpa’s brothers) to see if we could meet up. No one was answering at either of their houses. I was thinking our little visit wouldn’t happen, but it did. We got a hold of my uncle Butch, who gave me directions to the “shop,” where I could see both him and Uncle Jerry.
We visited for a long time, talking about such things as Krystle and I’s employment, my younger brothers, my grandpa a little bit, and most of all, the ways that the United States destroyed Hawaii. Uncle Jerry looked a lot like my grandpa—they had the same eyes, and their wrinkles were all in the same places. He talked the most, about how Hawaii used to be, how Kona used to look, etc. Krystle and Uncle Jerry were keeping it going because Krystle knows so much Hawaiian history from this last year teaching. Uncle Butch didn’t talk as much, but he was sharp, and he laughed at my occasional joke. Apparently Butch has a son named Zac who lives in Vegas and is LDS. So that’s fun to have some LDS relatives on my grandpa’s side! Uncle Jerry mentioned that he can see the Hawaiian in me. And Uncle Butch made me feel bad, saying that he waited around for me all week and I finally called on the day he actually left the house. I didn’t mean for him to wait around for me. I even asked both uncles if there was a day they wanted me to come out, and they said, “Just call when you over here.” They both “talk lotta pidgin” too. “Dey ratha take a beating at da school dan from dey madda.”
We stayed and talked for about an hour and a half or two hours, and got Krystle bandaged up. Uncle Jerry even poured contact solution on Krystle’s toe because he ran out of disinfectant. When we left, it was almost dark. We headed to the National Volcano Park again to see the glow. It was cool, but I wasn’t like amazed by it or anything. It is pretty neat that melted rock makes all that glow, and who knows how far down it is from the crater top that we are seeing.
We made the two hour drive home, stopping at Claire’s to treat Krystle’s cut, and make sure she didn’t get staph infection. I was basically falling asleep in the car—my eyelids were really heavy. When we got back to Krystle’s, I ate the first relatively healthy thing all day (after eating Rice Krispies, part of a Kit Kat, a cookie, one and a half malasadas, some peanut M&Ms, and dried ahi), spam musubi. It was good, but my stomach was really upset about my terrible eating habits. But I headed to bed happy about all we had seen and done that long and tiring Friday.