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Hawaii on Trial

Posted Mar 21 2012 12:00am
I should have trusted my first response.  Go to Hawaii?  I’d reply incredulously. There’s so much mold there!

There are dry areas.  They even have cactus growing, I’d hear in reply. 

When the winds hit 30 mph and the temperature plummeted to 40, I was willing to put up with anyplace warm.  So off I went.

My first challenge, storing my car and gear, was easily solved by using the RV storage facility at the next place I camped.

Getting to the LA airport for my Hawaiian Airlines flight turned out to be more complicated, as the rental SUV I picked up had new car outgassing which, by 9 pm, was making me nauseous every time I opened the door. I had to take it back to Hertz, try out 4 cars, and finally choose another with 30,000 miles with everything I needed but GPS. Who cared? I had good maps and the route was all interstate highways. Easy! But reality didn’t meet up to my projections. Interstate 10 was undergoing construction and I had to get off in some suburb of Riverside where they didn’t believe in detour signs. I followed the car in front of me as it passed strip malls and gas stations until I found myself at the entrance to CA 650, and I headed south, only to get lost near the airport. Four hours later I took a delicious one hour nap in my car before returning it.

After arriving in Honolulu with a few hours of airplane sleep, I found a condo to rent in Waikiki.  It was right on the beach. I love the beach, having grown up in Margate NJ where I fondly recall every summer day spent building sand castles and jumping the ocean waves. No building sand castles in Waikiki, where the beach is made of very tiny pebbles, and the entrance to the ocean is laden with big pebbles that make walking on gravel barefoot seem like a delight. So I lay out my towel to enjoy sunbathing for 2 minutes before clouds covered the sun and fine pinpricks of drizzle landed on my back. These soft rains seemed to arrive every day as soon as I got onto the beach. And even as I write at the picnic table near the ocean, the rain has started falling again.

Well at least I have a place to stay indoors now. It is a cottage along the coast W of Haleiwa, a neat surfer-hippie town with a great health food store and 3 raw juice bars. The torrential rains that put Oahu and Kauai in the national news started the day we came out to look at this place and continued for the next 6 days and 6 nights. Then we got another 5 days of clouds and drizzle and last week, two full days of sunshine. Hallelujah! I actually felt pretty good on those days and started to like Hawaii. The rest of the time I’ve felt mediocre to awful.

What’s awful? Waking up in the morning with a splitting sinus headache and a queasy stomach. Having a fever, chills, and the urge to release everything inside me through the nearest orifice. Nights without sleep and nights with only a few hours of sleep. Swinging between being tired and being hyper. Unable to clear my head to meditate. Having digestive issues like GERD, burping, and constipation. And of course more fatigue and less tolerance of standing and exercise. But my reactions are less extreme than they were in the desert, and I haven’t declined to where I was in Ohio.  It’s very pretty here, and the warm weather is so much easier to deal with outdoors!!

Here are some pictures, including a few taken a bit up the coast of an Hawaiian monkseal who looked like another rock on the beach until it started moving its flippers.

More pictures on my Facebook album.

We move on tomorrow to Kailua Kona on the big island, an area known to be fairly dry. Whether it’s dry enough to keep the molds in check that stir up my immune system is something I’ll discover. If not, it’s on to Maui and then….the unknown.   
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