Does Hawaii Have a Winter?

246772_2038314394142_3246539_nWith my raincoat and rain boots I was one happy kid on a winter day. The above house where I lived as a young girl in Daly City California was usually shrouded in fog. On a winter’s day which seemed to be all year-long I would dash out the door on my way to General Pershing Elementary and immediately jump into the gutter where the water was over flowing the curb.

I was a smart kid because I knew that the water would go into my boots and soak my socks and shoes. Why was that smart you may ask? I hated school and I knew that the teacher would see how wet I was and therefore sit me in the hallway on a bench with a heater under it.

Smiling, I would sit and miss a good hour of class. That was my winter in California.

IMAG0055This is my winter where I live in Hawaii. signs of winter? Well you can see there are not too many people on the beach in Waikiki. Who in their right mind would want to swim in 68 degree temperatures? You’ll notice that most of the people still have tee shirts over their bathing suits.Of course it is still early morning.

IMG_3104No leaves on the plumeria is a sure sign of winter. Oh, and you will notice there are gray skies above. But the plumeria seems to be the only tree that looses its leaves this time of year. Remember in Hawaii it’s a jungle out there.

DSCN0725Then there is this wall of orange flowers that has bloomed in the late fall. Pretty apropos since Halloween is just around the corner when you see this in bloom.

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How did the ancient Hawaiians recognize winter? It was during this time that the Makahiki season began. The above symbol for the god Lono would be carried around the island and offerings were collected. When this was finished the official season would begin.

The Hawaiians knew this season by the rising of the constellation Makalii or Pleiades and they would put away all intentions of war and would play games. Games that would demonstrate ones skills such as throwing spears, or slings among other things. These would sharpen their ability to fight during a war.

Of course this being winter, the ocean would be to rough to paddle canoes to carry warriors to battle so this all made sense.

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Navigating the long lines headed out to the North Shore  I see many signs of winter. Someone must have piled their stones to ask for big surf or maybe their work of art. In ancient times it was not unusual to see pohaku ( stones) piled or placed around a dwelling as the Hawaiians believed that stones could have mana or power.

DSCN2269But a dead sure sign of winter is this sign. I never get tired of looking at the waves. They are magnificent. Unfortunately I did not have my good camera with me and did not get any shots. I was having trouble looking into the viewer on my pocket camera and was lucky I even got these shots. Lessen here is never leave home without my Cannon.

DSCN2280                                    50 foot waves and higher are the surest signs of winter and that brings out all the surfers…..

1044422_10203000667967669_41725385_n                                     Gotta catch that wave.

DSCN2272                                                                                           and sightseers.

So you see, we do have winter in Hawaii. Ah it’s a bitter season but someone has to endure it. Never need my rain coat and boots anymore. Even if I had them it is too hot to use those rainy day items. What can I say. Lucky I live Hawaii.

Hawaiian Winter, Toughing it out

It’s the season of Ku . Lono has had his time and now is fading away for the year. (Lono Arrives) As he leaves with just a few more months of winter left I look at all of the dark clouds and mango trees being blown in the winds. I mourn as the blossoms fall to the ground. It means there may not be a big crop this year.

As I drive Nico to school in the early morning, the clouds cover the sky and the sun just barely breaks through. Our winter, the time of Lono, barely seemed to be a winter at all. And though Lono no longer presides over the season, it seems that he has left some cold reminders as Ku ushers in what will soon be our summer. But not to quickly as, hopefully, we will have some rain to help with the very dry winter.

Now it may not seem like a winter to those of you who do not live in Hawaii. It is to us who are used to the temperatures that normally  hang in the high eighties with humidity that can get to be  brow wiping higher . As I sit here in my tee-shirt and jeans my feet are cold. I’m wearing a sweater and drinking a very hot cup of coffee trying to warm up. My feet are cold because I don’t have slippers.

Here in Hawaii you don’t wear shoes in the house. It is part of the Hawaiian custom. My slippers were, well, getting too slippery so they went the way of the trash can.

Our winter has become my favorite time of the year though. The colors become more intense in the sky and rainbows are in abundance. And the snow! well actually it’s the shower trees. The winter winds blow the flowers from the tree looking to me like tufts of snow. But of course you don’t need a snow plow, salt to keep the roads ice-free or mounds of clothes when the thermometer drops to the single digits. You just have to stop and smell the flowers.

I had to pull over and take out my trusty camera to capture the beauty of this winter day.

Yellow Shower Tree

The flowers, like snow, lay on the ground

During the evening I drove over to the other side of the island. I took the the H-3 Highway. If you ever get to Hawaii, you must, I can’t emphasis this enough, take a drive through the H3. The mountains cut like diamonds from the volcano’s that once erupted on this island are covered with green that often looks like velvet. Palms, rubber trees, mangoes and every form of ground coverseems to spring up as you drive from one side of the island to the other.

As I pulled over to the scenic point that was at the end of the highway it was with much disappointment. It was still winter after all and the hoped for sunset was nowhere to be photographed. But, after all, this is a blog about Hawaiian Winter. No sun straining through the clouds, just gray mass shrouding the mountains and darkening the sea.

So as this boat sails off into the clouds I wish you hot chocolate and snugly blankets. Unless you live in Hawaii and if you do then maybe I will see you at the beach tomorrow! Hey somebody has to live here.

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.

How to get snowed in when in Hawaii

Example of the idyllic impression of a snowed-...

Image via Wikipedia

 

 

My friend in Wisconsin wrote that it was 20 below last night. There is ice and snow everywhere.  I can’t even imagine what that must be like. You really have to keep your cabinets stocked with weather like that.

But I would still love to experience it. But there is a caveat. I would only want to experience it if I had a totally stocked food pantry and all the craft items I needed. Of course there would have to be cords and cords of wood by the fire place and enough money to pay an enormous heating bill. Hmm doesn’t sound like I want the cold but maybe a photo of snow on my windows. That would be my version of being snowed in.  If I’m not going out in the freezing cold (I’m no idiot) and the house has to be as warm as Hawaii, why move to a winter climate when a photo will do? That’s the ticket.

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. But when I open that front door I want to go to the beach.

Santa’s no idiot either