Puff the magic dragon lived by the sea

Trip Start Sep 16, 2011
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Trip End Nov 20, 2011


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Flag of United States  , Hawaii
Thursday, November 3, 2011

This morning starts strangely and too early. Noah went to the backpackers lounge room last night to work on some job applications. He works there for a few hours and comes back. This in itself is fine, except we have no concept of time at all.  Turns out he went out to work on job applications at midnight, and worked for 5 hours.  I had no idea what time it was, and waited up for him.  So we both go to bed at 5am, just as a cockerel starts doing his whole loud-cockerel-in-the-morning thing outside Woody's window (there are chickens running around the place where we are staying).  So Elwood starts to wake as we get into bed.  This is bad planning.  Even though we are on holiday, I think we could consider looking at a watch from time to time...

We manage to stall Woody with a DVD but still, we fall quite short of the recommended 8 hours sleep.

We do some bits around the place at home in the morning.  I email some folk and we do some admin type stuff.  We make a picnic lunch, and hit the road.

We decide we should see more of the island than the beaches on our doorstep (I am not sure why?).  So we head to the West Coast.   As the crow flies, I think we are less than 20 miles from the beach we are heading for, Makaha.  The thing is, the coastal highway cannot go directly to this beach because of the (damn) Wai’anae Mountains.  So we drive south to just near Pearl Harbour, then further south and towards the coast and then back up the coast for another 20 minutes.  It is crazy way to get somewhere which is just around the corner.  But the beach has great reviews and we want to go, so we go. 

The landscape is very different to where we are staying on the North Shore (even though it is geographically very close).  It is almost like Hawaii on one side of the road and Arizona on the other.  The mountains are steep and rocky and any foliage is extremely dry. Where we are staying is a strong farming area and is lush and dense and green.  We also drive though a lot of towns which look quite poor.  Where we are staying is not especially affluent but I guess all the farms mean there are some jobs.  It feels like the West Coast is doing it quite tough. 

Out of the blue, when I am flicking though the guide book, Noah asks me where Hona-lee is.  It sounds familiar but I do not remember seeing it on a map.  After asking some questions, I realise he is looking for the town in Puff the magic dragon (lives by the sea, and frolics in the autumn mist in a land called Hona-Lee).  I suggest to Noah that  although it indeed does sound a bit like Honolulu, but given a magic dragon lives there, it may be fictional (and therefore not in Hawaii).  He gives it some thought, and nods - seriously.   

We pull up at the beach and are underwhelmed.  I feel like our local beaches are prettier, so we half heartedly wake the sleeping beauty in the back and get out the car.  As we step out of the car, it is like the sun shines especially for us, and suddenly the beach is beautiful and we feel sunny.  We picnic on the beach and play around for hours.  We get back in the car very happy and glad we made the journey.  We are starving when we get back in the car, so we munch away back up the coast. 

We head back up to Sunset Beach as after the most wonderful sunset yesterday, it is almost like we are craving to see it again.  Elwood is delighted to be back at this beach and starts running around straight away.  We play ball, watch the surfers, and generally invent games which involve Elwood doing a lot of running.   He finds a little sand dune and runs up it and jumps down it time after time.  We enjoy watching him (and knowing he will sleep well tonight!).

Next we go to a takeaway shop called Ted’s Bakery.  We order meals and fries and head home to fill our boots.  We order way too much food (the portions are behemoth) so Noah takes the leftovers to share amongst some backpackers.  It is happily received.

Elwood is just charming tonight.  He chats enthusiastically and he happily gives Noah and me a lesson about fruit.  We also spend a lot of time pretending we are playing with Riley and Jayden’s dog, Sebastian.    Elwood is thoroughly enjoying himself.  When Elwood is playing around with 'the dog’ over dinner, I tell him he needs to eat nicely or Sebastian will have to go outside.  He does not want the imaginary dog to go outside – so he is a model child after that. Brilliant!   He also makes my day when he tells me how proud he is of me.  Happy Days.  

So now the lovely boy is asleep, Noah is tackling the dirty laundry and I blog and flick through the guide book.  I read something lovely in the Fodor’s Hawaii guide....

"The Hawaii experience begins and ends with Aloha, a word that envelops  love, affection and mercy, and has become a salutation for hello and goodbye.  Broken down , ‘alo’ means presence and ‘ha’ means breath – the presence of breath.  It is to live with love and respect for self and others with every breath."  It is no wonder we are so in love with this place.  It feels like it is beautiful on the inside and the outside. (I am not sure if that is possible, but if feels true.)

We have a plan for tomorrow and we are feeling relaxed, optimistic, and a tad tired around the edges. 

Aloha lovely people.
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