Thursday, October 22, 2009


We checked out about 9:30am, but our flight didn't leave until 8:00pm. That left us a whole day to explore the island. Kailui-Kona is on the leeward side of the island and is drier and the landscape is lots of lava rock from the still active volcano, Mauna Loa which is currently sending streams of lava down the side of the island. It also spews a steady stream of gases that form a haze (smog or "vog") over the leeward side. We drove up (4000+/- feet) the mountains and over to Kona which being windward is lush and green and rainy. Our destination was the Hawaiian Botanical Gardens. Just incredible!! It is in a gulch that leads down to the ocean. Steep gulch!! The scenery is so lush and with so many gorgeous flowers and shrubs and a stream meandering down the hill to the ocean. The climb back up was - strenuous! Panting, we made our way to the car, a place to sit down and cool off. The is no way we could ever remember the names of all the flowers. I'll be putting a majority of the pictures in a slide show to the right of the blog. We took a couple hundred!

Then we were off to Akaka and Kahuna Falls. And, an even steeper walk!! Kahuna Falls is pretty. Akaka Falls is just gorgeous!! Kahuna is not as dramatic and is further away and inaccessible. The walk back up the hill - gawd awful!! I was thinking about crawling up the last few yards on my hands and knees!! Was it worth it? YES!!

Mmm, now I just have to figure out why my yellow border does not always show up when I import the set-up....

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


We snorkeled on our scuba trip; we snorkeled on our rubber zodiac trip and in between times snorkeled on our own at a beautiful beach about 3 miles from our condo. If you haven't snorkeled, I can't explain how peaceful and awesome it is to float along watching the sealife below you and around you. The fish are such beautiful colors and designs. Some look like pieces of modern art.

The fellows in the photo below became my "buddies" and swam circles around me for awhile! They were beautiful to watch - swarming around me, swimming to and from. Totally awesome!! As you can see, it is not all the same type of fish and, at times, was joined by more colorful fish. Oh, that's not fair! These fish were beautiful - an irridescent black/blue with a neon blue stripe along its spine and on its tail!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Well, John has gotten into the swim, so to speak. He always refuses to wear shorts! Today changed all that! He not only allowed me to get him a pair of shorts, but even suggested we get him a 2nd pair!! Plus, drum roll please, went for a pair of crocs!! This is big stuff!! And I was impressed when he got rid of his pocket protector at his retirement luncheon. He is now officially retired!!

Easy going day... just spent a couple of hours breezing around on scooters and admiring the scenery! Fun!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


The word is incredible - again! I use it a lot, but we've seen and done some wonderous things this past year. This is one of the top adventures! We boarded the boat at sunset and joined several other boats out in a cove somewhere north of Kailua-Kona. Lots of lights are dropped into the ocean to draw the planketon which draws the manta rays and mackeral. We donned wet suits and snorkel gear and went over the side holding onto a floaty ring. We waited a short while and then --- these creatures swam up and around us, doing barrel rolls. Some were about 12 feet wide and there were about 20 of them. Amazing!! As one comes toward you with its mouth open you can see inside it! They came close enough that we had to pull back to keep from touching them. Touching them is a big no-no. They are covered in a slime of sorts that protects them. Touch and disturb the slime and they become vulnerable to disease. Just so amazing!! It was hard to get a good photo as the contrast between the black as night water and the lights shining on the white undersides of the mantas is so high plus the speed they travel at make it difficult to adjust to when you are trying to stay afloat!

Saturday, October 17, 2009


Well, the idea was that I would receive an intro lesson in scuba diving and the instructor would go down with me and watch over, guide me. All I had to do was to be able to clear my mask and pressurize my ears. Got all suited up; tank on; drove in and tried to go down - 3 times!! No can do!! Rather than hold up John and another diver, I gave up after 3 tries and went back topside and snorkeled. It was no sacrifice as the water was beautiful, but I would have loved to been below on the Davy Jones locker level. John really enjoyed his dive - after a 15 year hiatus. I will try again since John enjoys it so much and it is something I'd like to share with him. Below are 3 views of John... 2 scuba diving 60 feet down and one snorkeling along the top! Yeah, he got sunburnt on his back!! Big time!!!


Well, we're in Hawaii!! No, we did not bring the RV. (2 things it does not have - a garbage disposal and pontoons!!) Did not bring the dogs either! Dogs and RV are back in Livingston, TX. We flew out of Houston on Thursday. Very long flight, about 8 hours! Never been to Houston before and our short overnight stay did nothing to encourage a longer visit. It is steamy!!

We're staying on the island of Hawaii in Kailua-Kona at a timeshare. It is very nice and very comfortable. We met friends Leo and Claudia from the desert for dinner last night. So far we've been snorkeling and scuba diving. Well, I didn't quite make the scuba. Tried, but couldn't clear my mask and couldn't pressurize my ears. So, I went back up and snorkeled. I will try again sometime as John is certified and loves it and wants to do more! Tomorrow we snorkel with the manta rays.... that should be terrific!! John took a lot of pictures when he was scuba diving, but he's having a problem with the flash. Plus, the fishies swim really fast!! We're getting into a Hawaiian mood - I'm wearing crocs and John promised to try on a pair of shorts!!

Monday, October 5, 2009


Well, we arrived at Escapees safe and sound and are all set up! We'll be here until 10/30! Whoopee!! I've got out all the "stuff" - photos, plants, giraffes.

Now, just a few catch-up photos.... Kayaking in Florida.... We just got the photos. It was such a serene place!! Okay, with a few alligators barking.

And, an Italian sub that had been visiting Mayport Naval Station as it was towed out of harbor. Yeah, I know. All those jokes about the Italian Navy!! And, yes, it is very small even for a sub! I can't imagine being under the sea in a sub, never mind one this small.

Sunday, October 4, 2009


Well, we're in Texarkana, Texas, waiting out a rainstorm. We spent one night at Tom Sawyer RV Park overlooking the Mississippi in West Memphis, Arkansas. Nice RV park, but West Memphis... well, not on our return visit list. Then we planned to spend two nights here at Shady Pines in Texarkana. It stormed all night and John decided that, since we didn't need to be anywhere and we're in a really nice RV park, it would be wise to spend another day. We shopped yesterday at a local place that carries Amish breads, pickles, etc. Homemade cinnamon raisin bread -- so good!!

Tomorrow onto Livingston and a one month stay!! Wow, a whole month in one place!! Won't have any excuses for not doing so all those pesky little household chores. Maybe even some ironing! Nah....

Thursday, October 1, 2009


We left Jacksonville and headed north back toward Columbus for a short 1 day visit with our grandsons. Got to see Branden's 1st football game. Now, he's 9 and a little guy and plays on and against teams with 9-11 year olds with his team comprised of medium sized boys, 15 of them. (Remember there are 11 players per team always on the field.) They played against a team of all big kids (noticeably so) and the team had 32 players plus a squad of cheerleaders!! Maybe it is just the grandma in me, but something is wrong with that. Needless to say, Branden's team was creamed. They were exhausted and, even when they got to hit an opposing player, there was no way they could bring him down. Funny stuff going on with some of the refs, too! We were not happy! Hopefully some parents complained and were listened to, but I doubt it.
Next day we headed out again for Fort Campbell to see little Miss Eva!! We spent the weekend there and then went to Cynthiana, Kentucky, for 2 days to do some Boyd family genealogy research at the local library. That part of Kentucky is just gorgeous with one field after another of beautiful horses! Lots of black barns, too- with hex signs. Saw 2 barns that had the upstairs finished for living quarters complete with chandeliers hanging in huge windows in the peaks! Back to Fort Campbell to spend my birthday with Hans, Andrea and Eva. We went to dinner and Miss Eva was just the perfect little girl. Of course!!