As the sirens blow outside my window I am reminded that it is the first working day of the month. Every Month at 11:45 the emergency sirens are tested. It’s just another day in paradise.

It reminds you that there is always a possibility of a hurricane, a tidal wave, or the worst case scenario, another Pearl Harbor attack.

I remember being on the island of  Hawaii, or as we call it “The Big Island,” on business when Iniki hit. Hurricane Iniki, the 3rd most dangerous hurricane in US history hit the tiny island of Kauai in 1992. http://www.drgeorgepc.com/HurricaneIniki.html

Though we were 65 miles from the Hurricane it still did a lot of damage. The little Church in Kona town floated out to see in the large swells that carried it away. Some paddlers canoed out to it and with rope brought it back. The Stained glass windows were still in tack and only miner damage was done.

I mention this hurricane because  many of my friends think my life is sun and surf and I always seem to be the envy of many  who don’t live here. There is always a possibility of a natural disaster such as the tsunami that hit the Big Island in 1946 on April Fools Day. It killed 24 children and their teachers when it hit their school. Eyewitness Account

I knew somebody who had a  brother that was caught in it. He saw a huge wave building in back of him as he tried to catch fish that were floundering on the waterless ocean floor. He could not outrun it so he just held on to a rock as the wave went over him and pulled back again out to sea. She said her brother stuttered right into his adulthood as a result of that day.

So keep these accounts in mind when I share with you a typical morning for me here in the islands.

On most mornings when I drop Nico off at his school this is the view I have of Diamond head. It’s amazing how the colors change in a matter of minutes. As I walk up the long winding path to his class I can look down and watch the day begin. Much of the time it will be heading into the high 70’s by 7:30 AM.

When I get to the top of the path there is another beautiful site that I just love to look over at.

This is just to right of Pearl Harbor. Its a good thing that none of the classes face this way otherwise this school would be full of daydreamers. If you double click on the photo, and look at the large golf ball like Sea-Based X-Band Radar that sits on a platform on the horizon, you can see more detail of it.

It is based in Alaska but spends more time here in Pearl Harbor. If you want to read more and see photos please go to this site; SBX

Even in Hawaii a little rain must fall and I sometimes have to go to the doctor. This is the landscape where the hospital and labs are located.

So as the day ends and I head up the hill to my house even the sun has to set and I have to do my chores. What can I say. Just another day in paradise.







  1. Toby Neal says:

    Another wonderful blog Karen! I heard the sirens high on the side of the West Maui Mountains as I was ziplining on the longest, most intense course in Hawaii called the “Flyin Hawaiian” for our 25th anniversary.
    I enjoyed explaining the sirens to our new Canadian and Indian friends who were “flyin” with us.


    • You know Toby, I don’t remember sirens when I lived in San Francisco. But I did have to wear “dog tags” to school with my name, and blood type on them. That was the 1950’s and the war still loomed over us. I loved those tags. Man, I was such a Tom boy.


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