Wednesday, June 28, 2017

technology blues

Last Sunday evening we heard a loud, and muffled at the same time, thump and the TV went off. A quick look out the window revealed a large limb had fallen from the big oak taking out the cable that provides us with internet and TV. So a call to the cable company got us an appointment on Tuesday to reconnect the cable to the pole. Meantime, it's amazing how quiet the house is without the TV on, albeit very low volume and how dependent our morning routine is based on that cable, whether TV or internet or both. I've read my book more which changed my location in the mornings and we are listening to music in the evenings. Marc had us tuned into a really fine blues station on an internet radio whatever and they played one of those recordings that makes you stop whatever you are doing and just listen. Wish I knew what it was.

So now we are back on-line albeit without cable TV. It seems that when we ordered our basic cable TV and internet connection the guy hooked us up but somehow we were never charged for the TV. And somehow, we never got around to alerting the cable company about it. That's been remedied now. The guy that came out and reattached the cable to the pole today made sure we weren't getting any services we weren't paying for. Oh well, it was a nice ride while it lasted. I don't really watch TV even though it's on all the time (in the other room). I guess we will explore other options. Until then, it's back to the rabbit ears.

In the meantime, I'm trying to figure out how to get rid of the fucking iCloud that I reluctantly turned on while we were on vacation so that I could keep taking pictures without having to delete any. When I did that, it not only got rid of the photo stream album that uploads pictures to my computer but it also gave me 13 empty albums that had once contained pictures of our work (and added a few in the process), empty albums that on my computer in the photos app all contain pictures. WTF? So, now my allotted free cloud storage is full and it will no longer transfer pictures from my phone to my computer and it wants me to buy more storage space.

So, yes, I have deactivated it via but that changed nothing on my phone, all it did was prevent my photos from being uploaded to the cloud and hence to my computer. Now I have to mail my pictures to myself.  And I have gone into settings on my phone and turned off the cloud and it gives me this message...this iPhone was not able to download 99 full-resolution photos and videos. If you continue, the low-resolution versions of these photos and videos will be removed...and then I'm supposed to click on the 'remove from iPhone' button. So not knowing what that means exactly I hit cancel. I want my photo stream album back, I want my albums with images of my work back. I want it back the way it was before I activated the fucking iCloud. I guess I'm going to have to make a trip to the Apple store.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

miscellaneous pictures and commentary

The tropical flowers are so exotic

and the plumerias that I have to protect from freezes grow into 15'+ trees that are covered with flowers. White was the most common but I saw yellow and pink and magenta and coral orange and red and the trees were everywhere. The groundskeepers raked up fallen flowers the way we rake up fallen leaves.

At the black sand beach, on the edge where we saw the sea turtle and then walked down to the water's edge, it was more rocky than sand and when the wave surged in and then receded, it sounded like a string of firecrackers going off.

My friend Denise found this information about the Ki'Opi pond (picture at low tide): The languorous town Kailua-Kona, spread along one main street paralleling Kailua Bay, was a favored retreat of royalty long before the missionaries showed up in 1820 and was the refuge that the great King Kamehameha I sought in 1812, following eight years of waging war to bring the Islands under his command. The king sailed to Kamakahonu, in a sandy cove near the present site of King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel and built his residence, a hale called "Papa" nearby. John Papa I'i, an attendant of the succeeding King Liholiho, described the area, "Outside the (royal) enclosure, by the edge of the sea, was a spring called Ki'ope...It was a gathering place for those who went swimming and a place where the surf rolled in and dashed on land when it was rough. It was deep enough there for boats to land when the tide was high..."

The Hawaiian language consists of 5 vowels...A, E, I, O, U both long and short...and 8 consonants...H, K, L, M, N, P, W, and 'okina (glottal stop). The W is also pronounced as a V under certain circumstances.

Driving around both islands, it was common to see hedges planted and trimmed of hibiscus 

and often the road sides with banks of up to 10' or so were covered solid with blooming bougainvillea of all, pink, yellow, orange, white. This is the best picture I could get and it's out of focus because we were always moving and compared to most, sparse.

A few more miscellaneous photos...

I have no idea what kind of a tree this is but it is enormous.

A (prehistoric) tree fern growing amid another tree.

My salad for lunch in Hilo constructed as a volcano.

Puzzle boxes at the market.

links to previous posts in this series:

7. our last day and the journey home

Saturday, June 24, 2017

our last day and the journey home

Tuesday morning the beach at the hotel was taped off as well as the bay with signs that said 'no swimming, no boating, no fishing' due to tidal conditions and bacteria, which all the people fishing off the bulkhead wall were ignoring, so after breakfast the girls and I went to check on a few things in town. I wanted to go back to the shop that was selling prepackaged plants I could bring home since my rainbow plumeria stalk had already rotted more than halfway up and they still had a few gifts to get for friends and family.

We checked out when we returned and had the hotel store our luggage since our flight to Dallas didn't leave til 5:40 and then got in the car and drove to see what the next few little towns had to offer which turned out to be nothing so we headed back to Kona and parked on the coast road a little farther than we had previously walked and set out to kill a couple of hours before we turned in the car and caught the shuttle to the airport.

We only made it about a block when we came upon this market very reminiscent of the Mexican markets where you can get anything you can think of...produce, crafts, flowers, clothing, shoes, baskets, etc...and we wandered around in there for about an hour. 

First thing I saw, and bought, was this very cool basket with a net top to keep the bugs out.

Then we had a last meal on the island with a last view of that beautiful water 

and collected our luggage and headed to the airport where we went through security and waited once again for our flight. 

Once the gate opened we had to go through a another security check

and then we were on our way. We reached Dallas, had time for breakfast, and boarded our last flight, arrived Houston, dropped the girls off at home and then finally pulled into our driveway about noon. About all I did the first week back was sleep and water the yard.

last: miscellaneous pictures and commentary

links to previous posts in this series:

Friday, June 23, 2017

the long drive and volcanoes

Monday after a leisurely breakfast we started out on another long day and once again should have started earlier. Kona is on the west side of the island and the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is on the south east side. We headed north for a scenic tour around the island...

lots of lava fields with pale tufts of grass taking hold since 2 of it's 6 volcanoes are considered active...Moana Loa which last erupted in 1984 and Kileaua which has been erupting continuously since 1983.

And older lava beds thinly covered

and into the interior across the northern end

back to the coast on the east side

my scofflaw granddaughter

where we stopped at Akaka Falls State Park and took the short hike to the falls

and continued on to Hilo for lunch and then driving to the Volcanoes National Park. We got there right about 4 PM and the map at the visitor center listed two if you had 1 – 2 hours which took you past steam vents to an observation point where you could see the erupting Kilauea in the caldera and the other if you had 3 – 4 hours which took you down the Chain of Craters Road all the way to the coast. Since we had wasted a lot of time going the long way around and it was already late afternoon, we took the short route to the steam vents

and then to the observation point for the shield volcano Kilauea, about 4,200' of elevation and downright chilly, where we saw three points of lava erupting. We were about a mile away and those small crests of fire you see are in reality spewing 80' – 100' high.

Jade took these pictures with her camera through the telescope at the observation point.

Since it had taken us less than an hour we ventured down the road that led to the Chain of Craters Rd. to another lava tube in the middle of a gorgeous rain forest (and it was actively raining lightly off and on). It was a very steep descent and an equally steep ascent so we waited at the top while the girls walked through

and then drove another short distance to the walking path Devastation Trail which we walked down until the girls had seen enough

and were back on the road to Kona by 6 PM which took us down through the lava fields

and around the southern point and back up the west coast and from the looks of the road on the admittedly not detailed map it should have been an easy drive. And it was until we turned north along the west coastal road and it became a very twisty turny road reminiscent of the road to Hana with almost equally slow speeds and were behind a very timid driver nearly the whole way so it was after dark before we got back to the hotel and then dinner at one of the close restaurants with a view of the water and the wharf.

next: our last day and the journey home

links to previous posts in this series: