Thursday, October 15, 2009

No Rain, No Rainbows

We went to the Big Island of Hawaii to celebrate my mother’s 90th birthday with my brother’s family in Hilo. Except for occasional showers (Hilo is the wettest city in the U.S.) and the tsunami warning due to the earthquake in American Samoa, a wonderful time was had by all. Most importantly, my Mom loved visiting Hawaii again and being with her family!

Hilo is a funky town with lots of old Hawaii charm. Many tourists miss this side of the island, which is a big mistake, as it has so much to offer. Join me for a little tour of Hilo. Remember, “No Rain, No Rainbows.”

Hibiscus, lava, and ironwood trees.

Hilo’s farmer’s market is loads of fun. There is nothing like fresh picked papayas, rambutans, lychees, and pineapple!

My niece, Suzanne, and her new husband, Chris, flew over from the Isle of Guernsey in the English Channel to help us celebrate. Marla is leading the group to buy some nice things for dinner.

Bay front buildings on Kamehameha Avenue in downtown Hilo.

Charming Hilo buildings from another era.

Orchidland is my favorite surf shop.

They’ve already put out the Christmas decorations at the Honolii Surf Company.

Vintage Hawaiian shirts.

Local foods in downtown Hilo. Check out the Lilikoi chiffon pie! Sounds fantastic! They do love their Spam.

In a recession entrepreneurs need to be creative.

Marla and my brother Gary shopping at the Maku’u farmer’s market near Pahoa.

We bought two beautiful orchids for only $5.00 each at Maku’u. This one is a zygopetalum in a fabulous purple.

Driving around Kea’au we came across the Hongwanji Buddhist temple.

No trip to the Big Island is complete without a visit to the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Marla and I are pictured up at the Jaggar Museum lookout. A steam plume vents from the Halema’uma’u crater inside the caldera of Kilauea.

You can’t find fresher fish than at Suisan fish market. They have been in business for 102 years. I selected some locally caught Mahi Mahi to serve at my Mom’s birthday party.

While driving around the Onekahakaha Beach Park I spied a painter and his friend.

NEXT WEEKS BLOG: “THE MOST BEAUTIFUL TRAIL I HAVE EVER TAKEN!”

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