Saturday, May 25, 2013

This Is My Home

 When I come home from a lovely trip, I am often surprisingly pleased how beautiful my own home and area are. Our 50 year old rhododendron is blooming with all her might at our front door.
 Emily took me for a hike up Teapot hill, which is above Cultus Lake. It took about 30 minutes more with me, but I'd go again. I need my hiking stick for the way down because of an old knee injury (and an old knee). Man I was hurting after my 12 hour day shift yesterday! My first time back at work in a month.
 Now there are teapots placed along the trail and hidden off the trail. This is new. I've been hiking Teapot since I was about 10.
 I love the Alice in Wonderland effect, and so does Emily.
 They cheerfully encouraged us along the trail. This is the season just past the fern coming out with their fiddleheads and there were lots of forest flowers. The trail has been beautifully maintained and a second route was established without the stairs.
 May long weekend (previously Victoria Day) is a time for our youth groups to gather at the Cultus Lake United Church Camp for May Retreat. Almost a year of planning goes into it and my daughter is one of the leaders and played a mean drum (her own long lost drum kit). I was so happy to be invited to nurse and see the difference between this camp and summer camp. Love it! The leaders are so together and the theme is integrated into worship. Love it!
It's also nice to be at the camp in spring and see the different season.
There has been knitting. The pi is off the needles, the tunisian crochet shawl has broken a needle (hook) and I'm taking a turn on some major yarn bombing.
Em and I are off to Kamloops now, she is singing her own composition for a dinner in honour of my eldest sister. Catch you on the flip side when I get to come home again.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Exploring Maui

 Having a second week on Maui has enabled us to walk the beaches and explore. We are just north of Kihei on Sugar Beach, well known to many Canadians and to many of our friends and family back home. Thanks to our great hosts, we have wifi and unlimited phoning to North America and can keep in touch with Emily, minding the house and the dog, and Scott, got his first job.
 Mandala on the beach.
 The lava reminds us how young this island is.
 And the sunsets remind us how young we are.
 Took a trip to the top of Haleakela for some amazing star gazing. It got darker.
 We like early morning snorkelling with the fishes and the turtles.
 The wind turbines on the west mountains amuse us.
 We are near a bird sanctuary, the Kealea ponds. Lots of water birds. There has been knitting in the evening, but not when we are driving the winding roads to Hana or up Haleakela.  I am on the third chart of the Queen Anne's Lace pi shawl. A good travelling companion.
 This is big beach. We were blown away by how big it is, how quiet it is in the morning, and how you can't find a bad beach on Maui.
 There were literally 4 other people on this beach. We snorkelled for a few hours, but the surf was pretty strong. We've had 4 good snorkelling mornings at different beaches.
 Lahaina in the sunset. I wanted to come to the Aloha Friday street fair and I wasn't disappointed. Good deals in the shops, free maitais, dinner at Cheesburger in Paradise, the sunset and a good taste of the luau.

Aloha. We go back on Monday and will miss our Maui.

Friday, May 03, 2013

On Maui Time

 On Maui time, we are just enjoying the walks on the beach, swimming laps in the pool, exploring the island and having dinner with our friends who moved here.
 Sunset is about 6:30 in the evening which allows for great walks and vistas. Our Sugar Beach Resort is right on the ocean and we have the benefit of shady mornings to sit on the lanai or swim.
 Everywhere you look is like a postcard. We visited here in 1994 and were worried it would be all built up, but there is a quaintness, still about the area and those who share it with visitors. We are not looking to do all manner of guided tours. We've been to the other islands enough to know that the real gem is just taking the day as it comes, eating when you're hungry, resting when you're tired, and trying to not get too much sun on our white Canadian bodies. The last is hard because you just want to be outside, in the garden, on the beach, by the pool, on the lanai.
 Our beach is pretty windy, but there are two canoe clubs that practice with outriggers. I'd like to go out but D says not really. I have been knitting on the Queen Anne's Lace pi shawl in the electric tree undyed fingering yarn. It is a joy and the Hiya Hiya sharps circular needles are the perfect match. On chart 2, row 83, the rows are getting longer. But each has a pattern of about 10 stitches, so it's easy to pick up.
 The gardens are exquisite. We have been earlier in the season when the plumeria look like naked dinosaur limbs. All are blooming now. My favourite scent.
 We have our own bird of paradise right next to our patio table.  It doesn't even look garish in its bright colouring. I don't feel silly walking around in my bathing suit, and there are no "proper" rules, except be gracious to your neighbour.
Each evening is another chance to be thankful for our retreat from our own reality and a moment to figure out how we will hold on to the aloha's and the pineapple contentment when we are no longer on Maui time.