Monday, February 23, 2009
Just got back from the Big Island this weekend and needless to say, I have a new favorite animal. These beautiful creatures are not only fabulous at selling auto insurance, but they are very fun to watch! They are quite playful with each other and seem to love striking a pose for tourists. I definitely got the "I'm ready for my closeup" expression from a few over lunch.
Thus ends the February island hopping adventures (thankfully afforded by Go Airlines major deals!) This weekend was a bit different from Maui, in that it encompassed both high points (see above gecko love!) and low points. Well low may be extreme...stressful and seemingly life threatening points is more like it. Ya see on the Big Island well...it's big, vast really. And if you are driving at night and happen to be running out of gas, your options are pretty limited. If you are driving very late at night, due to an earlier misread on how long it would take you to get from Kona to Volcanoes National Park and then back to Kona, and you need emergency fuel, it actually turns out that neither the just-closing gas station nor the nearby police station are willing to give you any (even for cash). And thus, you may end up nailbiting your way back to Hilo (in the opposite direction of where you wanted to go) hoping you don't end up stranded on the side of a dark road somewhere in the vastness that is the Big Island.
Alas, my friend Lydie and I did indeed make it to the gas station and then sped back to Kona, arriving at 2:30 a.m. amped on lots of coffee and soda so that we did not crash our way through the dimly lit road that takes you around the island (note: there is really only one main road that takes you around the island...thus it takes a very very long time).
Aside from this unsolicited fear-instilling component to the trip, I must say I left with a definite desire to return and concluded that the Big Island is the most visually interesting of all the islands. It has snow covered mountains, volcanoes, the most dense and lush vegetation of all the islands, beautiful rolling green hills (almost reminded me a bit of New Zealand in parts), tropical jungles, beautiful high cliff beaches, white sand, black sand, grey sand and green sand beaches and almost desert like terrain in certain areas. It's just insane. You drive for 6 hours and you've gone through what seems like every possible type of terrain. Actually reminds me a lot of New Zealand in that respect. Although, I think New Zealnd gas stations would've been open later.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Ok honestly I'm beginning to find it pretty ridiculous that I live here for my dissertation research. Well actually not the "here" of the photo. This was in Maui at Haleakala (The house of the rising sun) national park last weekend for sunrise. With a 3:30am wakeup call, my french neighbor and I hit the road to reach the 10,000 mile up summit. Needless to say, Maui rocks. Definitely a fan. I've sorta declared February my birthday celebration month, partly cuz...why not? And partly cuz it's the month that Go airlines has great deals on interisland flights. And thus I will be off to the big island for the weekend later this month. Seriously ridiculous.
But in more academic news, I seem to be focusing in a little more on the dissertation and hopefully after a conference presentation this weekend and a final request for fellowship application reference letter headaches out of the way, will be solidly living in the archives from here on out (except for weekend surf breaks of course). Totally ridiculous...