Monday, January 28, 2008

A Weekend Adventure!!

Volcano National Park

Colleen has been planning this trip for us since we landed 2 weeks ago. We hitchiked up to Volcano national Park on Friday, catching 2 very nice rides to get us to the campgound outside the national park. We arrived an hour or so before sunset on a spectacularly clear day and after setting up the tent we hiked half a mile to the rim of Halema'uma'u, the crater of the Kiluea Volcano. Can you spot Ambiana in this picture which features Mauna Loa in the background?

The crater was steaming and we enjoyed the sunset from there before heading back to camp. When we went to sleep the stars were out but the rain came in overnight and stayed with us all the next day. We stayed in the campgound until the last possible moment before heading out onto the highway in the rain and catching a quick ride to the national park where there was a Hula performance going on. Colleen enjoyed it while Yaya and I ran around the visitor center with the other kids pushing buttons that made bird calls in the rainforest exhibit. Then it was back into the rain to hitch into Hilo for a Saturday Night Contradance.

Contra Friends in Hilo

We got a ride real quick which took us into Hilo and we spent the afternoon shopping before arriving at the YWCA at 7pm for the dance. We haven't been to a dance in about 6 months so it was lots of fun, especially for Ambiana! We had forgotten how friendly contra folk are and were delighted to make so many new friends right away. In fact we made more friends in 2 hours than we did in 2 years in the Massachusetts Contra Community! We were offered a place to stay by Cindy, the caller and her husband Bob. I had met Cindy 5 years ago at Kalani when Wild Asparagus played there. They took us to their home 20 miles north of Hilo and up on the side of Mauna Kea with an awesome view of the ocean. We played dominoes til late in the evening and then slept blissfully in a bed with a rushing stream outside the windows. Did I mention the blissful hot showers we took too?

The view from Cindy and Bob's House

We spent most of Sunday there too, great breakfast, more dominoes and then lunch before Bob drove us all the way back to Na'alehu on his way to set up a wireless internet conncection for a client in Captain Cook. A wonderful weekend adventure!!!

...Meanwhile Back on the Aina

When we returned we found that Ben and Laurel had been busy building us a new kitchen area as well as a table...

and shelves where when we left had been a big pile of brush

Ben and Laurel also aligned the pier blocks for the house and are off in Hilo now scouting out lumber...