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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Thing Are Good Back Home

We are on a vacation from a vacation. My friends JP and George keep an eye on things back home,

My camper sits behind the garage - feeling jilted. Darling Be Home Soon.

It looks like the weather in Tallahassee is good.

Thursday - We Visited Queen Emma's Summer Palace - We Also Had Car Trouble

Queen Emma's Summer Place

Lulu Shivers at Pali Outlook
pre-car trouble

Thursday - we drove up into the mountains to Queen Emma's Summer Palace. It is certainly very nice - but cottage would be a better description. 


Queen Emma was the wife of King Kamemehaha III. After her husband died - she ran to be monarch - but lost to David Kalakua. After the election loss - there were riots. She lived many years as a shadow monarch. One of the reasons she lost was that she had caucasian blood. She was well-educated and a good friend of Queen Victoria of England. they had a lot in common - losing a husband and a child. 

The mountains of Oahu are 4000 feet high - and there is a dramatic cooling effect in the summer. She accepted royal foreign visitors - she even put an addition on her palace for the Duke of Edinburgh. 

Admission was $8 - the house is wooden - and imported from England. It has very high 15-foot ceilings - great for handing heat - breeze - and ventilation. All windows are doors - covered by shutters inside and out. 

After the visit - we drove up to the Pali Outlook - the site of constant high winds. It is the site of a major battle where King Kamhameha I defeated another faction and finally united the islands. It was very misty and windy there. 

Our luck - our Kia with 28,000 miles on it would not start. I was lucky to find someone with jumper cables. We called Hertz - they said bring it in - and they would give us a brand new car. They gave us a choice - we chose a Mazda with 1000 miles on it. 

Columns and high porch

Prince Albert Edward's crib

Queen's bed

Hawaii High Award

She added this room for
Duke of Edinburgh

Symbol of Hospitality

Duke of Edinburgh room

Pali Outlook

Pali Outlook - Battle Scene

Getting our new Hertz Maxda

Fireworks On Waikiki Beach At High Tide

Last night we got home from our day trip to the West Coast of Oahu - just in time for the Friday night 7:45 PM fireworks on Waikiki Beach. Many of you know the story of Lulu and I - in the summer of 1969. I was a lifeguard and she was the bikini girl. Maybe you have seen the cult movie - Life Guard with Sam Elliot and Kathleen Quinlan. We are watching the fireworks perched on a life guard stand.

HAWAII - The West Coast Has The Sunshine And The Girls All Get So Tan

This airstream trailer was the only camper we saw in public. 

The west coast beach at Disney Aulani was very nice.

My visit to Barber's Point was an excellent brush with history.

Friday morning we woke up in Waikiki to clouds - mist - and a prediction or rain. On the Hawaiian Island - the wet windward side is the Northeast. The drier Leeward Island is the Southwest. So we decided to drive the 25 miles west on H-1 to Barbers Point and the Aulani Resort. My goal to visit Barbers Point Air Museum - Lulu had her eyes on the Disney Resort. As we motored west - the skies magically cleared. 

Our first stop was the town of Kapolei - a Levittown-like designed community from 1955. We found an outdoor mall there and had a snack. Then just 2 miles away was the Barbers Point Air Museum. Barbers Point was one of the airfields that Japan attacked on December 7 - 1941. When got there - and could not find a sign or entrance. Finally - a van came up the road - an electric gate opened - we were waved in. When we got out of the car - a mechanic with the gift of gab said the owner was not there - but we could roam as we wished. 

It was walking through history. All sorts of old aircraft and equipment were sitting out in the weather and sun - waiting for me to take pictures - and touch and feel. Lulu was very accommodating. I spent an hour imagining what it was like on that fateful Sunday morning. There were no signs around to ruin the moment. After a half hour - Lulu went back to the comfort of the air-conditioned Mazda. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Our Visit To The Royal Palace - The Heart Of The Hawaiian Kingdom

Throne Room - first floor
Lulu and I love many things about Hawaii. The history and the culture are just different and tragic.  Iolani - the Royal Hawaiian Palace gathers it all together. It is the heart of the wonderful former kingdom. The Palace sits in the middle of downtown Honolulu. 

Hawaii has 8 major islands and they were separately ruled for years. Eventually - King Kamehameha joined the islands under one ruler. Around 1850 - monarchs were elected - not inherited. In about 1880 - King David built the Royal Palace to entertain other countries. When he died around 1890 in San Francisco - Queen Lili was elected monarch. 

The Palace was only used as a home for about 10 years. A coup was held led by the Dole Family - and Hawaii became a Republic with a Dole as president. Dole Fruit was being taxed to enter the USA - so he steered Hawaii to be a US territory. So from roughly 1900 to 1960 - Hawaii enjoyed the protection of the USA - without the taxation. Finally in 1959 - it became the 50th state. 

Hawaii has fantastic tropical weather - all year around. The ocean keeps it cooler in summer and warmer in winter. Everything grows here - everything except snakes - no snakes

At one time there were 300,000 Native Hawaiians - disease from the white man reduced that to 24,000. Today only 10% of Hawaiians are pure Hawaiian. There is a wonderful school here funded by big benefactors - called the Kamehameha School. It is open to natives of a certain percentage of native blood. 

Another tragic tale of Hawaii was the "leper colony" called Kalaupapa on Molokai Island. People were brutally collected up and deposited there. They were banned for life. Today that colony still exists - a few Hansen's Disease patients live there although the disease is cured. They can leave but choose to stay. It is such a beautiful and sad place. 7000 people died and are buried there.


The palace was the capitol building for 70 years. They have built a new capitol next door - and have restored the old palace with private donations. The place is spectacular. 

The tour was $15 - there were very few people there. You are given audio/video device that explains everything. Do not visit the island without seeing it. 

The building is rectangular - with 3 floors. The monarchs lived on the top floor. The staterooms are on the first floor - and the basement was storage rooms - now used to display historic items. This building had electricity and telephones before the White House. Each room had its own bathroom - not bad for 1880 - on a tropical island. 

Queen Lili - the palace behind 

The new adjacent state capitol

Royal Palace back door.
You start tour here.
Banyan tree in palace yard
Grand staircase to residence 
Royal dining room - first floor

King David's big chair
Flushing toilet

Bathroom sink

Dumbwaiter brings food up
from basement kitchen

Drawing room - first floor

King's library - second floor

In 1880 - the king has phones

Each bedroom had a bathroom

King's Bed quilt.

King's bedroom - second floor

Queen's bedroom - second floor

Queen's bathroom

Queen Lili was imprisoned
in this room during the coup
Queen Lili made these quilts
Note quilt writings

Dining room - first floor

King David built palace

Bathroom stalls by dining room
Lulu at new capitol
Father Damien statue
He served the leper colony

They use the term Hansen's Disease - not leprosy.
I use leper for understanding -
as in the Bible.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The Iolani Royal Palace

Hawaiian Royal Palace

Today we plan to tour the Iolani Palace. It is the only Royal Palace in the United States.

Around 1880 - King David of the Hawaiian Kingdom built it after visiting all over Europe. He was accepted as an official royal visitor and wanted to return the favor to entertain here. He and Queen Lili were the only monarchs to enjoy it. Around 1890 - the Dole Family organized a coup to take over Hawaii and make it a Republic - with Dole as president.

When the USA heavily taxed Dole's fruit - they arranged Hawaii to become a territory to the USA - and avoided the taxes. It went on like that for 60 years.

In 1941 - Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and our fleet there. That caused the USA to enter World War II. The next day - Germany declared war on the USA. We were sucked into the fray - and started helping England to beat Germany.

In 1959 - the United States made Hawaii a state. The Iolani Palace became the state capitol. In 1969 - they built a new capitol - just next door - and turned the Palace into a museum.

It was sort of a deal in Congress. In early1959 - they let Alaska become a state - a Republican leaning state. In late 1959 - Hawai became a state - a Democrat leaning state. Hawaii has about 1.4 million people - Alaska has only about 700,000 people. Each state gets 2 Senators and 1 House member. California has 40 million people and also gets 2 Senators.

Today it is restored to the kingdom era. We toured it before but it is a wonderful return visit.

Queen Lili was locked up in the Palace by the Dole faction - she wrote the famous "Aloha Oe" there. Dole is now the largest fruit company in the world. They grow most of their fruit in third world countries where labor is cheaper.

Free Bird - Conan O'Brien - Hast It Been 8 Years?

I love this video from Conan O'Brien's last NBC Tonight Show. Conan was replaced after only 7 months after he replaced Jay Leno - only for Jay Leno wanting to come back.

Sometimes Conan reminded me of Big Bird. Conan joins in on the action with a group of all-stars.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Everharts Will Never Go To Hawaii - Because You Can't Drive To Hawaii

This Tesla X - an SUV with
gull wing doors. 
Waikiki Beach - not very wide -
but plenty long. Our condo
is the 5th one from the left.
Drew - Robin - and Liz went to
Duke University.
We love this Sand Restaurant on Waikiki
names after famous Duke the surfer.
Lulu loves Christmas shopping.
Back in 1978 - when we owned the green bus - our friend used to tease us about driving everywhere. Dale Kline chirped - "The Everharts will never go to Hawai because you can't drive to Hawaii." 

After Lulu teaching 8 summers for the University of Hawaii - and 5 other various trips with the family and passing through on the way to Australia - my reply is "How do you like us now?" My own brother in law said at the time - "Do you think it is a good idea sending her to college?" Thanks to "her" - this is all possible. I have gone from slugging it out in a public school classroom - to hopping all over this wonderful world. 

Two weeks ago it was England - last week it was Disneyworld - this week it is Waikiki. The only thing that will slow her down - is probably the health of this 70 year old ex-school marm. 

The Hawaii trip was planned on one premise. Did we want to go anything in April before going to Greece in May - Germany in June - Denmark in July - and London in August. When this $350  roundtrip to Hawaii popped up on Lulu's listserv - she pounced on it. 

Our first day in town has been basically to watch our bodies revolt to the time zones changes - the meal changes - the nap changes - the bathroom changes. 

This morning - I was up at 2 AM after 7 hours of sleep. Lulu lasted in bed until 5. We were done eating and all cleaned up by sunrise. We went for a walk - there were a few mainlanders out walking. Most of the stores were closed. It was breezy and cloudy. 

Hawaii reminds one of a foreign country - except the American money and cellphones work. We can watch the TV shows from back home on our slingbox and cellphones. Imagine watching the 6:00 news at noon. It is easy to stay up for Jimmy Kimmel at 5:30 PM. 

Hawaii became a state in 1959. It has 1.4 million people. 

The 8 main islands of Hawaii - we visited 5.
Most of the people live on Oahu - the island with Pearl Harbor and Honolulu. Waikiki is a beach neighborhood in Honolulu. The original state capitol was the Royal Palace - which is today a museum. There is a modern capitol building next door. The other islands can be visited on a $200 round trip. We have visited 5 of the islands. 99% of the time we stay on Oahu. 

Hawaii is about 3000 miles from the Mainland. The population is divided roughly 38% Asian -  24% white - 9% Native Hawaiian. The history is wonderful and tragic. The cost of living is high simply because it is 3000 miles from anywhere. It has tropical weather - the ocean makes it mild - the water cools the summers and heats the winters. 

One island is famous as the site of the former "leper colony." We visited that site years ago - by going down over a cliff for 3 hours on donkeys. There are still a few patients there - although the disease was cured about 50 years ago. 

Hawaii does have "Interstate Highways" that don't go interstate. They are called H1 - H2 - H3. There is a highway that circles Oahu that is 2 lanes. There is one small section in the northwest where the highway does not go. 

Downtown Waikiki and Honolulu are lined with high-end shopping - Rodeo Drive type. You can buy a Rolex watch in a store right next to a Tesla dealer. All the fancy names are here. There are many local foods available - and a strong Portuguese influence. When Portugal was a world master - they had a colony in Hawaii. We love their sausages and their pastries - Masalatas. 

Of course Hawaii is famous for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th - 1941. The USA had their fleet stationed here - it was then a USA Territory. Japan attacked us - and the next day Germany declared war on us. We know how that ended. 

Only the Big Island of Hawaii has active volcanoes. The other islands are covered with extinct volcanoes. 

Panorama of Waikiki Beach. 
Hawaiian Quilts are very popular.

Just 2 years ago - this market was a sleezy
flea market right downtown. 
This shack in the Banyan tree was one time a radio station
that broadcasted all over the world. 

There is a Tesla dealer in this mall -
among the Banyan trees
This bride was getting ready for her big day.
She was being married  at
The Royal Hawaiian Hotel
This is the beach about 8 AM.
It was very cloudy.