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kazu

Live from the Westerdam-Join the "Pearls of the Pacific" gang's South Pacific Cruise

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[ATTACH]382277[/ATTACH] sunrise in the way to Hilo for the day

 

 

Nice!!! You were up before I - I can tell :)

 

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Beautiful landscapes. We'll be at Hilo soon. We are doing a HAL tour today. Pelee - Goddess of Fire. HAL offers a small group tour for this one so several of us on the roll call booked and we are going to go on the same mini bus hopefully. Looking forward to it.

 

The captain was certainly tooting yesterday leaving Honolulu long and hard. Saw a couple running for the ship.

 

also of interest, there were several people with luggage boarding in Honolulu. Wondering if they flew from San Diego as it seems there were a lot of no shows there. Several of our roll call members were among them as my invitations to the meet and greet were returned to me by the crew. They told me they had checked and they were not on the ship.

 

 

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A few toots this morning coming into Hilo, beautiful rainbow [not an uncommon sight for this side of the island].

 

Got to go meet my Road Scholar group - all 12 of us. To the volcanoes and an orchid farm - full day.

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We have arrived at HIlo. Beautiful day with a rainbow waiting to greet us.

 

Hope you can see it in one of these pics.

 

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And our Captain was in fine tooting form this morning as we approached ;)

 

 

 

 

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Hilo looks beautiful today. You are lucky to have sun - oftentimes it is overcast and rainy. Hilo was the very first Hawaiian city we visited so many years ago - have been there many times since.

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Well, it's Saturday, so this must be Hilo! We didn't make it up early enough to see the rainbow, but after a leisurely breakfast, we went on the ship's tour to the botanical garden. I have never seen anything like it, just an amazing jungle of gingers, helichoniums, anthuriums, orchids and hundreds of other tropical plants and trees, set in a beautiful valley leading down to a rocky cove. I walked down and rode back in a golf cart, Pat walked both ways, and said it wasn't too bad. I'll try to post a few pics.

 

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We were back at the ship by 1:30, and had lunch in the Lido. We will go to Mass this afternoon at 5, because tomorrow we have an Adventure tour with Jacqui in Kona.

 

 

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Well, it's Saturday, so this must be Hilo! We didn't make it up early enough to see the rainbow, but after a leisurely breakfast, we went on the ship's tour to the botanical garden. I have never seen anything like it, just an amazing jungle of gingers, helichoniums, anthuriums, orchids and hundreds of other tropical plants and trees, set in a beautiful valley leading down to a rocky cove. I walked down and rode back in a golf cart, Pat walked both ways, and said it wasn't too bad. I'll try to post a few pics.

 

d5383cf50e0a883105790ee40b577232.jpg

 

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We were back at the ship by 1:30, and had lunch in the Lido. We will go to Mass this afternoon at 5, because tomorrow we have an Adventure tour with Jacqui in Kona.

 

 

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Great pictures Ann!!!! It looks very beautiful :)

 

 

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[i was speaking to someone at the front desk regarding the danger posed by Segway guy and I was assured he had been spoken to about driving the Segway around the ship. He is restricted to going from his cabin to the gangway and vice versa. They agreed that a moving ship full of passengers was no place for a Segway. __________________]

 

I must be missing something here. Why is a Segway even allowed on the ship?

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I must be missing something here. Why is a Segway even allowed on the ship?

He might want it to use getting around in ports. I can see that, especially since some places even have Segway tours.

But it doesn't belong zipping around the ship. Much, much too dangerous both for the rider (sudden wave, anyone?), and everyone he passes.

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Well, it's Saturday, so this must be Hilo! We didn't make it up early enough to see the rainbow, but after a leisurely breakfast, we went on the ship's tour to the botanical garden. I have never seen anything like it, just an amazing jungle of gingers, helichoniums, anthuriums, orchids and hundreds of other tropical plants and trees, set in a beautiful valley leading down to a rocky cove. I walked down and rode back in a golf cart, Pat walked both ways, and said it wasn't too bad. I'll try to post a few pics.

 

3e0069bbb55c1f39772defc46a43b2ef.jpg

 

We were back at the ship by 1:30, and had lunch in the Lido. We will go to Mass this afternoon at 5, because tomorrow we have an Adventure tour with Jacqui in Kona.

 

 

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Oh beautiful pictures, especially the lipstick palms!

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I think people are allowed to bring bicycles on board, but they don't get to ride them in the halls! (Or perhaps they store them somewhere for passengers who want to cycle in port.)

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We'll today we are Hilo on the big island. Hawaii. Pronounced Havaii. Been pronouncing it wrong all this time. We had our insect repellant with us as there has been Dengue here and never saw a mosquito. Of course, if we hadn't had it.....

 

We were doing the Pelee Goddess of Fire tour and although we warned to bring jackets, it was truly a beautiful day and I didn't need one (except on the bus for air conditioning at the end).

 

We did the small group tour with HAL but they ran out of minibuses so we were on a large bus with about 24 people. The small group tour is not supposed to exceed 21 - should I ask for a refund? - LOL

 

Our guide was Cliff (no way can I pronounce or type his real Hawaiian name. He took us to see the Liliuokalani Park (named for the last Queen who donated the land), It is decorated with pagodas, etc., as Hilo's sister city is in Japan.

 

On our way....

 

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A lot of the trees are not local. They were brought to the island by other cultures. The Pandora tree with it's roots hanging down comes from the Cook Islands. Monkey Pod trees also come from there.

 

Just beautiful greenery everywhere. Some of the trees.....

 

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Then we were on our way to the volcano National Park. Here they have tried to recover all the original indigenous life forms to the island.

 

Hilo has no predators, no poisonous snakes, no poisonous spiders and no poisonous plants.

 

 

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Arriving at the Information Centre/display we had our first glimpse of the steam that spews out constantly.

 

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Our guide told us that there were warnings for VOG (not Fog, this is not a typo). ). Aka volcanic gases. There is a warning on the air quality. I didn't see them, but I believe him.

 

He did warn us not to wear hats or other things that can blow away as there are forbidden areas due to the danger involved. That sign I did see.

 

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This volcano has been active for a very long time. It has added 1,000 ares of land to the island. The Ohia trees which are indigenous to the island vary in size due to the latest eruption and the lava flow.

 

The Hawaiian Volcano National Park is 330,000 acres .

 

 

 

 

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The volcano is a Shield Volcano as it spills hot molten lave (about 2100 - 2200 degrees F). So, it's different than volcanoes (like Mt. St. Helen) that explode from gases.

 

I discovered that this volcano has been spewing sulphur dioxide since 1983 - probably longer.

 

Many people come to study it.

 

 

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Hilo has the purest water in the world. The lava acts as a filter! All the water is drinkable! No Montezuma's revenge on Hilo.

 

I need a better camera - I could not capture this caldera properly but here are a couple of views. (A crater is under a mile in diameter - if it is more than that - they call it a caldera here).

 

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And from the other side of the caldera...

 

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Five of us went on a small private tour today with Rich Smith who coordinates getting supplies and donations for those who live on Fanning Island, one of our upcoming port visits. Rich took us up to the Volcano National Park to see the craters, Thurston Lava Tubes and the rainforest. We also had a great tailgate lunch up in the lava fields. Later, we visited Rainbow Falls which is very close in to Hilo. We ended our day with a stop at Wal-Mart to pick up supplies for Fanning Island. It was a full and enriching day.

 

 

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Next was the lava tube. I decided to forego this - not because I didn't want to do it, but because lava is very unforgiving and I didn't want to risk banging the elbow or falling at this stage of the game. So sapper1 and DH headed down to the lava tube and sapper1's DH and I remained above to enjoy the views and each other's company (are you worried yet, sapper1? LOL).

 

If I can wrangle the memory card from DH's camera, I will share or, hopefully another roll call member will post (hint, hint, hint Gigianne).

 

I became totally enchanted with the rain forest vegetation. And the indigenous tree to the island - the Okia. It has beautiful flowers called Lehua. They come out as white pods and burst into red - truly pretty.

 

Please allow me a bit of indulgence and to share....

 

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the ferns are amazing (and indigenous to the island). They grow so tall and then when they become too heavy they cave in and start all over again. Truly beautiful in the rain forest.

 

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We did get to see some lovely botanical specimens and had the customary HAL shop stop at a Macadamian Nut Place. No time to stop at the steaming sulphide but always time for the shop stop. LOL

 

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It was a pretty spot though and I did buy some nuts for us and if some remain unopened, hopefully for friends. They had a popcorn that was to die for and ridiculously priced. One taste and I was sunk and the bag is in my room!!!!

 

Last HAL tour for this cruise. Thankfully the rest are private. The HAl tour was quite good in all honesty. It's that "one" person who thinks they are "special" and are the last one on the bus every time, keeping every one else waiting. Oh and this same "lovely" person just barged in at the shops and literally banged my elbow without a so much as an "if you please or excuse me". I had my protector on, so anyone who cared to look would have known. This person was oblivious to everyone but herself. And of course , despite a roll call member trying to tell this "lady" about the elbow, she just carried on her merry little way. Sorry for the little vent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Five of us went on a small private tour today with Rich Smith who coordinates getting supplies and donations for those who live on Fanning Island, one of our upcoming port visits. Rich took us up to the Volcano National Park to see the craters, Thurston Lava Tubes and the rainforest. We also had a great tailgate lunch up in the lava fields. Later, we visited Rainbow Falls which is very close in to Hilo. We ended our day with a stop at Wal-Mart to pick up supplies for Fanning Island. It was a full and enriching day.

 

 

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Was it your group at the park bench? Looked like a private tour.;).

 

Saw you as we were heading out.

 

 

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We saw you at the Lava Tubes, Kazu! Don't remember seeing you after that, though.

 

 

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We saw you at the Lava Tubes, Kazu! Don't remember seeing you after that, though.

 

 

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We went to see the caldera. Only HAL group that went there and there was a private tour that was having a bite at the park bench. Very nice. thought it might have been your group. Too far away to see the people.

 

Early day tomorrow. Kona awaits. See you at 7:30 in the Pinnacle Bar. Recommend breakfast in the room tomorrow.

 

Haven't tried the coffee maker in the suite yet, but I have a feeling we will be giving it a whirl tomorrow ;)

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Mass was in the Hudson Room again, and again, SRO. They should know better. It was stifling hot, and I would imagine that 80plus people is over capacity for that room. I'm definitely going to complain!

 

Jacqui, sorry about the elbow. We are setting the alarm for 6 tomorrow. See you at the bar!

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Haven't tried the coffee maker in the suite yet, but I have a feeling we will be giving it a whirl tomorrow ;)

 

Buy Kona coffee - the real stuff, not the 10% blend - Hawaii needs the money! Besides it is good stuff.

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