Shiro’s Saimin, Friends and a Little Rain

Nico has been asking me to take him with his friend John Mark to do something since they are home for Christmas. Well I was sick one day, then had errands to do another and finely Nico caught me at my computer and said, “you promised to take me and John Mark somewhere.

What’s a grandma to do. So I went and picked up John Mark and his mom and the four of us happily talked in the car as we drove off to have some Saimin.

 

 

Shiro’s is well-known for their Saimin and I’d been wanting to eat some for a week. Both John Mark and Nico were only to happy to have a bowl of it too. Marites, John Mark’s mom had never eaten there so we all agreed it was a good choice.

I decided on the Wun Tun With Vegetables only because I was overwhelmed with all of the choices. There are over 60 choices or more. The two boys decided on pizza and chicken nuggets. Yeah, some saimin choice.

Behind these curtains are order went.

Social Networking at it’s best. I can’t belive with all the harping to see each other, the whole time we waited for our order to come to the table, this is how the two boys “Played and talked with each other.”

Half way through my Wun Ton I remembered to take a photo. It was very good. Nico ate his order and part of mine too. Darned kid, why didn’t he just order saimin to begin with.

We wanted to take the boys somewhere to play. It was the first time I realized that Hawaii is really an outdoors kind of place. Yes I know, Sun shine beaches etc. but it does not really hit home until it rains.

The Saimin was great because it was cold and rainy outside but where could we take the boys to play. The McDonald playgrounds were closed because of rain, the parks were flooded with water, there weren’t bowling balls small enough for them to throw and worst of all the kids movies had been shown and we would have had to wait several hours for the next showing.

So we let them look at some of the Game stop, toy stores and shops at the mall. Then we had to call it a day.

The main thing was, the two friends got together and will again for a party tomorrow night. I got to have the Won Ton Min I had been craving and Marites got to try a new restaurant. All in all it was a good day.

St. Benedict’s Painted Church in Captain Cook Hawaii

I thought this might be a nice time of the year to post some photos I had taken on the Big Island of Hawaii. This is known as the Painted Church. It’s official name is St. Benedict’s.

The church was erected in 1899 by Father John Velghe of Belgium. With house paint on wood he painted the inside of the church with scenes from the bible. He used these to help teach his congregation of Hawaiians by referring to these paintings.

If you would like to read more on this church here is the site where you will find back ground, history, and directions how to find this out-of-the-way little church.

Here Comes Company. A Boxer joins the Pack

Ka Mea, the pit bull, fights for his place on the recliner with me, as a new dog has been added to our pack

This is Caddy our latest addition. She is my granddaughter’s dog but since my granddaughter is in transition right now Caddy will be staying with us. She is an Albino Boxer. She has managed to squeeze her way on to my recliner right next to Ka Mea. She not only works her way on to the recliner but she has managed to work her way into our hearts. She is the most precious animal and not much older than Ka Mea.

They have become bosom buddies and give each other a work out playing in and out of the house. I’ve never been around a boxer before and I must say I am so pleased at what a wonderful personality she has. She is also very smart, wonderful with Nico and loves each and every member of our household. She didn’t even bother Todd, the cat! Of course she is never left alone with Todd. After all she is still a dog.

Max has gone from this…..

To this

So how had Max our Polish Lowland Sheep dog taken this? Well since we cut all his hair off to help him out with the heat he has become a different dog and now plays so much more. With all his hair cut off Ka Mea no longer has anything to hold on to and Max can swirl and whirl around so fast now that he has become some mean competition on the playground.

But now we do absolutely have to close the doors on any other dogs who come to our doors. Of course I wish my granddaughter well in getting it together to once again take her dog home with her, but as far as I’m concerned, I’m in no hurry to let Caddy go. This is one visitor that is welcome to stay as long as she wants.

Finally, A Great Mexican Restaurant. Torito’s, in Kapahulu

Most mornings I stop At Starbucks with my friends and have a cup of coffee. Well, most mornings its coffee. Of course being the Christmas season I had the Eggnog Latte.

On this particular morning my daughter, grandson a I left Kunia and headed to town. You can see what distance we travel if you imagine us leaving the dark area and heading past Pearl Harbor, the water area in the middle of the photo, towards Diamond Head way off in the distance.

Having completed many errands, we stopped for lunch in Kapahulu. We went to a crowded strip mall called Market City. We decided to have lunch at a Mexican Restaurant there, called Torito’s.

I have lived in Hawaii now for 46 years and have only once found a Mexican restaurant that came anywhere close to my mom’s cooking. It was called Bueno Nalo and probably fit about 10 tables so there was always a line out the door.

Torito’s was tucked in between other nondescript businesses. My daughter had eaten there before and said that it was good. As luck would have it several other people thought so too. Upon entering there was one harried waiter who may have very well been the owner.

But he was pleasant and took our orders as quickly as he could. My daughter guessed, “Someone call in sick?”He laughed nervously and confirmed her statement. He managed, I thought, to get our drinks very quickly and then rushed off to other guest who kept arriving and took their order.

We ordered the luncheon special which was a large burrito, mine was stuffed with Chicken, cheese, beans and the best mole’ I had tasted in a long time. Along with it came the beans which were cooked perfectly. They did not have that half-cooked taste that I normally get at other Mexican food places. The rice was just what I had remembered my mom putting on our dinner table. There was a small  salad that also came with it.

I’m sorry that I didn’t get a photo of the food as I was so enjoying it I forgot all about my camera. But I did manage while waiting for the food to come, to take the photo of this wonderful mural that looked to have been air brushed on to the wall.

I plan to go back again as soon as I’m up to fighting traffic in to town. And if you happen to live here on Oahu, you might want to give it a try too.

 

 

 

Grandma and Nico ride the Hawaiian Railway

It was a cold Sunday Morning. I had to wear long pants with a long sleeve shirt. Nico was in his shorts and I had to fight with him to wear a long sleeve shirt. “Let’s go on an adventure” I told him. So he stopped fussing and put on his shirt. Off we went heading towards Ewa Beach.

“Would you like to ride the Hawaiian Railway train?” I asked him as he sat moodily in the back of the car. “Yes, but is it just going to be you and me? ” I knew where he was going with that and I also knew that if we brought along a friend for him he would not take in the ride but want to play games on the train with his and his friends gadgets, cards or digital what knots.

“No” just you and I today. Is that OK?” With lower lip sticking out he responded “I guess so.”

So into line we went and would you believe just a mile from our cold house the sun was shining to beat the band. I was happy to see that the train was going to be full. That meant that the Hawaiian Railway, that runs on donations, would be making some money today. For more photos and information you can go here. Hawaiian Railway Society

“This is the train we will ride. It is just like the one we rode on the Halloween ride. Remember that?” He nodded and then added that it all looked different. (You can check out the above link to see how different)

I had him stand in line to get the official railway stamp on our tickets. It was the actual stamp they used when the railway was in operation

This is what the stamp looked like but Nico was not impressed


Then the conductor came along and just like the conductor on the “Polar Express” he asked Nico his name and then he took his puncher and punched an “N” for Nico right on his ticket. I was smiling from ear to ear because Nico and I love to watch that movie. But Nico was not impressed.

Nico is not impressed

He didn’t even look at the Waianae mountain Range as we chugged on by

As we made our way down the coast we came to, I would say a town, but it was the Aulani hotel and the Ihilani resort. And you can see the big “Aloha” they put out for all those who can afford to pay $400.00 a night. To big business Aloha means “give me your money.”

Aulani, Walt Disney version of Hawaii

When the Aulani came into sight, I leaned over and said to Nico,this is the Walt Disney Hotel. Boy did he perk up. He said “that’s the one I see on Disney Channel. Do they have a swimming pool?”

“Yes, if you can afford to pay $400.00 a night.” He thought that would be fine.

Ihilani resort

You can buy or stay a few nights at these golf course condo’s that I believe are part of the Ihilani Hotel

I am sure these bikers were just stopping off for a cool one

Then as we passed the pretend Hawaii we headed into the real Hawaii. This is entering the town of Waianae.

This is the Hawaiian Electric Power Plant that they have stuck down into the area along with a large garbage dump because it is out-of-the-way of the tourist. This is a beautiful coastal area but it is also where most of the Hawaiians live so you can sort of say they get dumped on. At least they put palm trees in front of the plant.

I thought this was kind of funny. These are tourist diving here on the Waianae cost but what is funny is they are swimming in the warm water that streams out of the electric plant. Yes there are lots of fish to see but it is also a place that the sharks like just because of the warm water.

Ah, the natives are friendly, waving as we chug on by. Behind her is what looks to be a large swimming pool. It is the hot, hot water that comes out of the electric plant that has to be fenced in to keep people from boiling themselves.

Moving along the Waianae cost.

Now, I have to ask you. Do you like what looks to be the theme of Joanie Mitchel’s song “They Paved Paradise and put up a parking lot.?” As that is exactly what the hotels have done. Slowly paradise is being shredded. As the Eagles said “Call some place paradise and you can kiss it good-by.”

Or would you like to see paradise as it really looks. Don’t blink because you just may miss it. This was taken as the train turned around in Waianae and headed home.

And I can’t believe it. Just as we are pulling back into the railway yard this big rainbow came into view.

“Do you see the rainbow Nico?” I asked trying to get him to lift his head up now that the Aulani had long passed out of sight.

“Yes” was all he said. Well I’ve shot my wad. If rainbows and trains don’t do it for him then I give up. Next time I will stay home and read a good book.

Hawaiian Rainbows

It’s winter and the temperatures have dropped. Here in Hawaii, despite what many think, it can get pretty cold. Witness the snow on Mauna Kea.

This time of year also means that the weather is wet and for the ancient Hawaiians it meant work came to a stop and the time of Lono began. If you would like to read about that I posted it in a previous blog on the Rise of Pleiades and Lono

But for me it means rainbows. I am almost guaranteed a rainbow where ever I go. I thought for those who are suffering in a much colder climate, grayer skies, and maybe sloshing through the snow you might enjoy seeing rainbows. Of course, I’m taking chances here, you just may get upset and never look at my blog again. Honestly, I’m not rubbing it in.

Rainbows are so beautiful against such vividly blue overcast skies that when I see them I am always reminded that life can be so beautiful and that something so exquisite is free for everyone to look at and maybe be inspired.

This is the field right up the street from my house and most evenings this is what I see

If I’m walking out my front door I see rainbows over the neighbor’s house

Taking Nico to school there are always rainbows over his classes.

On my way to coffee at Starbucks I’m struck by the red of the awnings and the truck sitting on the wet pavement in front of the Jack in the Box. All are under the arch of the rainbow

Even the evil creators of the Frankenseeds, Monsanto, have a rainbow ending in their fields. I guess you can say, with all the farmers Monsanto has sued for growing their seeds that flew into the poor farmers fields, indeed there is a pot of stolen gold.

And as many of you know I love to picnic in  Waikiki. I always arrive around 5:30 AM. I never know what is going to greet me. Be it a stunning purple and pink sunrise, or a beautiful rainbow.

And I am sure many of you have seen this my favorite rainbow of all. My son was under the umbrella. It had rained all morning and we weren’t sure what kind of picnic it would turn out to be when the rainbow came out followed by a bright, Hawaiian sun. A promise of a wonderful day.

Christmas in Kapolei Hawaii

The flowers are as close to Hawaii as the Christmas trees got

It seems I just posted a blog about Christmas in Waikiki 2010. I got up to get a cup of coffee and sat down and low and behold it is Christmas 2011.

Since I covered Waikiki I thought I would look elsewhere for a Hawaiian Christmas.  I headed out to Kapolei, just west of where I live.

English: Photo of Kapolei City Center taken 11...

Kapolei from Wikipedia

Kapolei is a new town that has popped up to add to the traffic stream in what used to be a quiet, small, and kind of boring part of Oahu. Now it is pock-marked with shopping malls, hardware warehouses that you need a car to get around in and to put the stamp of approval on it all, a Wal-Mart that is a block long, is now being completed.

So I thought I would check out there city hall Christmas lights. Actually I was hoping for something unique only to Hawaii on display but found only a few things.

Well for sure Coconut trees are certainly part of Hawaii

A ukulele and a uli uli ( rattle with feathers used by hula dancers)

A pahu drum ( the real drum is made from the trunk of a coconut tree and the top is covered with shark skin)

Ipu Heke (gourd drum)in the back of the uli uli

And this is what the instruments looked like as part of the Christmas display

Here are a few drawings by the local school kids depicting their view of what a Hawaiian Christmas is like.Now these look more like the blog I wrote about last Christmas on taking a Staycation in Hawaii

In case I don’t get another Christmas blog posted I will end this post with this photo. A very Mele Kalikimaka to all of you until I post again