Karen and Cadi’s Excellent Adventure At Wailua Beach

Photo on 2013-01-12 at 13.20 #3

With four dogs I find it very hard to manage a walk for any of them. It’s a matter of them all crying and pawing to go all at once. Of course I’m not able to do this as I would be dragged down the street so fast that I’d be blood and bones by the time I got to the end of the block. I’ve been asking the family for help as these dogs need that exercise but so far no takers for now.

Cadi has become the biggest beggar and every time she thinks I’m going to walk out that door she runs to it and begins to shiver all over. The above photo pretty much shows how she looks when she pleads with me. Today since my daughter was home I decided to take Cadi for a ride with me to Waialua where I get the diatomaceous earth to help control fleas and ticks on my little pack.

After picking up the powder and cow hooves for them to chew on I stopped off at my favorite “Waialua Fresh” Vegetable (You can find them on facebook) store to pick up some Hawaiian honey. I walked to the car where Cadi sat ramrod straight waiting patiently. She deserved an adventure. So off we drove to look for a beach that didn’t have a sign that said “no dogs allowed.”


Yup. Here was a  sign with no restrictions. So out of the car jumped Cadi for her first outing to the beach. Even though this island is surrounded by ocean it is very hard to find a beach that is not jammed full of tourist that you can park your car close to or one that allows dogs. If there are beaches that are empty they are more then likely to be surrounded by expensive homes that cut off access to the nicer beaches. So when I saw this sign I immediately  pulled up to the one of three parking spaces.


With the sun shining brightly and the access so inviting we started our walk towards the ocean. But as we walked I was drawn to a small body of water to my right.


This looks like it might have been a stream that had come down from the mountain and towards the ocean. But if you look closely (click on photo for a closer view) You will see large pieces of rubbish  and unhealthy looking water. I always feel sad when I see how people carelessly destroy such beautiful surroundings.


At last we come to the beach. A few men and their kids were casting their poles out into the surf.  The beach is full of drift wood that might have come in with the tide. I wasn’t sure I wanted to walk this way so I looked to my right.


To my right was a long stretch of sand uninterrupted by any mounds of drift wood. Just as I started to walk this way I heard excited yelling from the kids on the left side of the beach.


One of the young boys had pulled this dead blow fish out of the water. Again if you zoom in you can see the hole on its side. To me that did not look right and I wondered how it died. I was hoping, not from some kind of disease.  I went to get closer to take another photo.


As I stepped toward the fish the boy picked up his find with his fat stick and flung it back into the sea. Was he thinking the fish would swim away? I felt bad about the fish. It reminded me of the blow fish that used to swim in the indoor saltwater pool at a restaurant where I worked. Everyone got a laugh from him as every once in a while he would climb up on a small rock and bark. That is also why they are called dog-fish. This poor little guy won’t bark anymore. And for sure you don’t want to eat this fish even if he was still alive they are highly poisonous. In Japan they are quite a delicacy and Chiefs take years to learn how to prepare them.


So we turned to the right again and headed down the large stretch of beach where Cadi sniffed along luxuriously taking in all the smells. I was looking at the homes that lined the beach and thought why do they allow special people to build homes along the ocean and deny the majority of the pleasure of an open beach?


Obviously one of the homeowners has set himself up in quite a wonderful spot to watch the moon go down or the sun set. And if he needs some rest after counting all his money he has his hammock set up under his little grass hut.


But still. I had access to this beach and Cadi was so happy to be out with me that I decided to look closer at the plants along the way. Here are photos of the flowers that actually grow along this coast. As I looked at them I thought they were quite pretty.




Here you can see a close up of the drift wood that is piled along the beach sand. I tried but could not think of what I could make from these pieces but they certainly were attractive.


And as I knelt  down to take an even closer photo of these flowers Cadi stepped right in front of my camera taking a quick lick of my lens (OH No!) and totally blocking my shot. I pushed her and I pulled her but she refused to move until I got up and started to walk away. She had had enough of dead fish, driftwood and plants.


So I turned around and headed back up the beach and to the access road where Cadi with sand on her lips happily walked to the car. We got in, headed down the road and up the winding path, past  Schofield Barracks and down the long stretch lined by farms.

Once at home Cadi stood in the middle of the living room so that the other three dogs could sniff her, taking a vicarious trip  via her fur and paws. Then they all ran to the door crying. OK now it’s their turn.

St Michael the Archangel Historic Church; Bringing Me to My Knees

The wonderful farmers market in Haleiwa closed down because the city didn’t want any citizens making good use of a very empty, out-of-the-way, abandoned  piece of property. In other words, if they were not making money from it no one else could use it for the good of all.

So as I drove to Haleiwa with no fresh vegetables in site I passed this sign inviting people to come and buy freshly grown organic vegetables from a farm way, way down a road, back into the mountains and for me, happily, unexplored.  I called my friend and we met and went together.

Heading back into the mountains about a mile down the road we pass these tall stone pillars. I quickly reach for my camera and Sherry, my friend, slows down so I can take a photo. “What do you think those are? They look like part of a sugar mill.” I asked her.

My friend is just as perplexed. After taking a few photos we inch on a little bit further down the road, maybe about a hundred feet from the stack and I see a graveyard! Oh I love a grave yards. Especially one that looks to have been abandoned.

There are teens with gardening tools and an adult working in the cemetery. “Do you want to stop and take photos?” Sherry asks. I’m not sure that I want to interrupt and bother the kids even though I so want to know what this place is about. So we head on further and find the organic farm which turns out to not have much of anything. We buy one or two items and turn around and head back.

As we come upon the cemetery again my curiosity gets the best of me so Sherry stops and I hop out and ask about the site. A very helpful young man named Joshua tells me the background of the cemetery and the stone remains next to it.

This is the remains of a three-story Catholic Church. The second story area contained the pastors quarters and the third story was the belfry. Built in 1853 It was built from the stones from the surrounding fields. Coral was gathered from the sea and pounded into lime to make cement to hold it together

Joshua says that the remains was once a church. In fact it was the first Catholic Church built on the islands. For many years Queen Kaahumanu, the favorite wife of Kamehameha did not allow any religion but the Protestant  missionaries on the island. When the Catholic church tried to make inroads into the Hawaiian people’s lives they were banned from the islands.

There was however one Hawaiian woman who did get indoctrinated into the catholic faith before the clergy were asked to leave. Her name was Luika Kaumaka. But facing much oppression in the area of Honolulu she left and moved out to the country side of Waialua. The area was known to be fertile and had an abundance of fish and the taro and sweet potatoes grew easily. Kaumaka told the people in the surrounding area about the Catholic church and managed to convert over 90 people to the faith. In time the Catholic faith did take hold and King Kamehameha IV granted a royal patent for a strip of land for the church.

After 60 years people started to move further away in order to be able to work at the plantations that were coming up. Though many faithful still made the long trek to the church it was becoming a burden to get there.

Joshua told me an interesting bit of trivia about the land that the remains stand on. It seems that a Mr. William Goodale of the Waialua Agricultural Company, offered to exchange the land for a piece that was closer to the plantation. When all was said and done Mr. Goodale made plans to take down what was the remains of the abandoned church. But he had a dream. In that dream an angel came to him and told him to leave the remains as they were. And so he did and that is what I came upon that day.

The cemetery on the church grounds

The great kids who take pride in their community and love of their church by taking care of the cemetery. Joshua is in the back row with the turquoise shirt and glasses.

Later that night as I sat researching the church I saw photos of the inside of the ruins. Early the next morning I was in my car and headed down the road again to the site. Having seen the archway in photos I had to see it for myself. I also wanted to take a look around the cemetery. I always enjoy reading the epitaphs. ( Yeah I know. I need to get a life.)

But since I was by myself I decided to take some other photos of the area that I am so attracted to known as the North Shore.

Waialua town with the old sugar mill in the background


The wind mills that have gone up in the north shore.

The road heading into the Organic Farm

As I made my way over the large stones into the graveyard I immediately fell flat to the ground. I got up dusted myself off and looked around mystified.  I saw this small little cross sticking out of the ground. Too bad I didn’t see it before I tripped over it. It was no higher then  the grass growing around it.

There were a few unique crosses not connected to any graves. They were erected around the cemetery.

Another solitary cross

It’s always sad to see a young child’s head stone

It’s even sadder to see one like this. “Santiago Babies.” I can’t imagine loosing even one child let alone more than one.

The Japanese Graveyard that lay directly behind the Catholic cemetery

The remains of the church and the archway I had missed on the first day

Can you imagine the view from the pastors window when this church was complete

So after tramping through the tall grass to get to the inside of the belfry, laying down on the boulders to get my photos and limping home, I felt quite satisfied. My shoulders are all jammed and I walked with a limp for a couple of days but what can I say.

My friends had a few choice words for me as they knew how isolated I was. My son got all upset, not because I fell but because the camera landed in the dirt. ( no it’s not his but he wants to use it) But it’s these little unknown areas of the islands that constantly surprise me. I’m living in a world of history that I can touch. The fact that I can capture and share it makes it all worth the pain, scrapes and work. I may not have been touched by an angel but maybe one wanted to remind me to be respectful and not take anything for granted. That’s a lesson I will remember.