Friday, April 17, 2015

Unexpected Guests!

    SATURDAY, APRIL 18TH

   It is, as I reported last week, an
unusual crowd that gathers every
Wednesday to watch the sunset on
a beach not far from my brother in
law's home in Hawaii.
   Most everyone brings food to
share while a few bring instruments
to entertain.
    I suspect about half of those who
show up know each other. There
are no trouble makers. But there are
a few who are, perhaps, best left as
unknown.
    There were some impressive
visitors to the party this week! They
were spotted arriving just before the
sun dropped below the horizon.
    They didn't bring any food or
instruments. But they sure were
entertaining.
     My wife tried to grab a picture of
the guests with her still camera. But
they were ducking in and out of
sight. No! It wasn't the characters
who bring their weed.
     They were whales! They're usually
well on their way towards Alaskan
waters at this time of year. But, on this
night, they swung by the beach...perhaps
to say good bye.
     I hope to enhance some video I
captured once I get home. But, in
the meantime, here's a couple frames
I froze, as photographed from my
small camcorder screen.
     Hope you enjoy them and that all
your NEWS is good!






Stumped!


    Thursday started early here on Hawaii's
Big Island.
    Some time ago a couple of the Coconut
trees at my brother in law's place had to be
cut down. Their fruit, weighting as much as
a bowling ball, had been growing right over
the neighbor's roof. You don't want to be
directly below when those things come down.
    Not among those wanting to waste a good
tree stump the family invited "Robert" over
for a morning visit.
    Robert uses a chain saw like Da Vinci used
a pallet and brush!
    He spent about 10 minutes checking out
photos of dolphins in a book and on my
laptop then stepped outside and went to work
on the stump.
     As he labored away a few neighbors
checked in and found spots on the deck to
provide a live audience for the sculpture.
     With no drawing in front of him the
finished product was already etched in his
mind from the short time he spent with those
photos.
      Before any of us could have breakfast
a  "Flipper" like image emerged from what
had been the stump of a Coconut tree!
      I wondered if I could do something
like that and thought about trying..till my
wife reminded me there's only a Clinic
near by....not a hospital. She suggested I
say with my stick figure drawings.
      Hope I can turn one into a Dolphin,
and that all your NEWS is good.  














 
 













Thursday, April 16, 2015

Plastered!


    Lest you think Hawaii is all about going
to the beaches, exploring beautiful scenery,
and eating  rare fruits, I must be honest and
tell you that the three siblings sharing this
time with me, my wife, her sister, and their
brother, have spent several quiet hours thus
far getting plastered!
    Wait a minute. Perhaps I'd better clarify
that a bit.
     The trio have been working on a project
which has them painting layers of a plaster-
like substance on various types of leaves
growing around this place.
      Those layers eventually harden, giving
the leaves a strong backing which will
allow the artists to paint what was the leaf
surface into a design of their choice.
       Of course I have seen said artists carry
a glass or two of some concoction into the
studio, that is garage, with them. Perhaps
whatever it contained was used on the
art work in some way. I, however, have my
doubts.
      Oh well, they say art is good rehab!
      Hope the museums are ready for these
new works and that all your NEWS is good!





Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Hiwaiian Diet


    After a week on Hawaii's Big Island
I am beginning to get a better idea of
how residents survive in an area where
I haven't seen a Cracker Barrel or Abe's
Hot Dog outlet in any of my travels.
    Now to be perfectly honest there are
restaurants and even a McDonalds just
about an hour away from where we're
staying. And we even were able to buy
a large hotdog at a Costco's outlet for
just $1.59 with unlimited refills on our
soft drinks.
    But you don't need a superstore to
find food around here.
    Nearly everyone seems to have a
Banana tree, Coconut Palm, or
Pineapple plants.
    They're even growing fruit here I
never heard of. Like the Rambutan.
     I'm always a bit reluctant when
someone invites me to bite into
something I've never seen and can't
pronounce. But, brave guy that I am,
I gave one a try.....before I ate the rest.
     Then there is the Malasada!
     It doesn't grow here. But it's made
here. Hugh chunks of dough rolled
and baked on the premises then
filled with your choice of Apple,
Strawberry, Cream, or Chocolate.
    We got a dozen. I didn't have to
count them. I carried them. The
weight assured me our box was
filled! As were all of us after a very
short time!
     Hope I have room for dessert and
that all your NEWS is good!





   
    

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dave And The Volcano!



    I've seen a lot of volcanos in my day.
    There was Pompeii. Saw that one in
a movie. And Mt. St. Helen's. That one
was on the news back in 1980.
     So I wasn't sure if I should expect to
see people running towards us wildly   
or a big inverted cone when my brother
in law drove us to see the Kilauea
volcano on Hawaii's Big Island.
     We stopped at the Visitor's Center
where a Ranger surprised me with the
news we were standing on top of what
may be the world's most active volcano
the moment we entered the Park!
    Maybe I should lead the crowd in
running somewhere?
    Instead we were lead to an
observation area where you could see
the center of a crater spewing smoke
which was surrounded by dark, burned
earth.
    I had wanted to bring a goat or
something to toss inside for good luck.
But I never was able to catch any of
those Billy goats I saw near the beach
the day before. Besides, the ranger said
the fumes were likely to kill me before
I got anywhere near that close.
    I did get a chance to walk right through
a Lava Tube, a sort of Holland Tunnel
cut right through the earth the last time
the molten lava ran in that direction.
    I didn't take long to go through. It
occurred to me that the hot stuff might
come back while I was visiting.
    I can be very swift when I have to!
    Hope you never blow your top and
that all your News is good.   


Monday, April 13, 2015

Go, Go, Go!


      I appreciate all the comments that have
come through regarding my Blog thoughts
from Hawaii.
      I'm a bit late with this Monday post.
      But the time difference and all our
running around has left me in
the Twilight Zone.
       Take Sunday for instance. No sooner
was I awake than I found myself on a
Softball field practicing with a half dozen
guys who gather each week to play catch,
swing the bat, and try not to limp off the
field.
      Then we were off again, visiting
beaches, searching for wild donkeys,
and checking out a resort where the
rich folks play.
       Vacation isn't easy folks. You've
got to work at it.
       Hope you understand all I'm going
through and that all your NEWS is
good!





Saturday, April 11, 2015

Drawn In!


    It was just about time to leave the
"Pot Luck" beach party I told you
about the other day.
    I man approached me and asked
if I would like to have my picture
drawn.
    I balked. I didn't know the person
and suspected he was one of the crew
who's "pot" had nothing to do with
food prepared for the evening.
   "There's no charge" he said. That
happen to be the right price so I
said OK.
    He asked me about my job and
stories I had covered.
    It quickly became apparent he
was more of a caricature artist than
a portrait painter.
    Still it was interesting to watch
as he drew quickly then shaded his
work with a cue tip dipped in beer.
    He said he usually uses his
subject's drink of choice. But since
I had already finished my Diet Pepsi
he figured the beer was his next best
choice.
   I think it was best he used it on the
sketch rather than drinking any more.
   He also asked to include something
I usually say so I volunteered by
usual sign off.
    Though he was not asking for money
I tipped him anyway to replace the beer
he used up.
    The finished product is.....well let's
say it's "different."
    Hope it was the beer that aged it, and
that all your NEWS is good."