Chaos Attraction

Waipio Valley

2007-07-02, 9:02 a.m.

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My relatives got annoyed at Rachael Ray. They're big on cooking shows, and I gather some years ago Rachael Ray did a show on how to eat cheaply on the Big Island, which they made Mom and I watch while we were there.

Today they wanted to go to some place that Rachael Ray had eaten at...but uh, nobody wrote the name of the place down. And as it turned out, walking into random places asking, "Where did Rachael Ray eat?" uh....didn't get any results. Go figure! (The rest of the trip my uncle kept making various comments about Rachael Ray and how he should write in and complain.) Ironically, we did end up eating somewhere ELSE Rachael Ray had eaten at, Tex's, a couple of times during the trip.

We brought along the two cars that day, but my uncle threw a little fit about the annoyance of having two at once and ended up insisting that everyone fit into the van, period. This left one of his kids (Kristen) without a seat belt, but uh....well, let's just say they were lucky the cops never busted us, given all of the "Clickit or Ticket" signs they have up in Hawaii.

Today we went into the Waipio Valley. I gotta give my relatives credit: this was pretty neat to see and I probably wouldn't have paid attention to it on my own. It's this very pretty isolated valley, 1000 feet down, and they don't even have electricity down there (just propane).

They drive you down a steep road in a specialized van to get there. The van even drives through rivers a bunch of times, which I thought was cool (plus got me some great photos of water).

Our guide, Hanalei, lives down there and has ten kids- because heh heh heh, what else is there to do down there in the dark? He was a fun character to hear talking about stuff. Here's him explaining how the Hawaiians made it to Hawaii:

There were a lot of horses down there- there were two riding stables and also a bunch of wild horses that would just come right up to your car. And some of them had babies!

(For more photos of Waipio, start looking here.

The tickets for the tour were sold out of a neat art gallery, which had a lot of nice jewelry and wood bowls. I ended up getting a really interesting book on Hawaiian mysticism (Hana and Wicca have a LOT in common, very good book), Chicken Soup from the Soul of Hawaii (you laugh that I bought one of these, but it's got good stuff), and a book called Affordable Paradise, on how to move to the Big Island.

On the way back, we hit the grocery store (yup, things are more expensive there), but I got some cheap postcards, an actual decent book on crocheted leis, and a "Men of Hawaii" calendar (note that the calendar part on there is very small compared to the full 2-page pics...heh heh).

We also hit the beach nearest to Waikioloa, which was very nice for swimming in.

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