Family beginning to arrive today…Red Road Scenic Route photos…

A breathtaking scene on the Red Road route.

Today, son TJ, girlfriend Sarah and two grandsons, Nik and Jayden, will be arriving from Minneapolis. In a few hours, Tom will leave for the two hour drive to Kona to pick them up at the airport. After checking online this morning, it appears their flight has been delayed by less than an hour in LA, not unusual.

We didn’t realize until we were in the islands how much we’d appreciate the lava rock which offers its own type of beauty. Although sandy beaches are preferred and required for swimming, the lava rock along the shore bespeaks the creation of the islands.

I’ll stay behind to make room for the five of them and their luggage although the minivan has six seats.  Hopefully, they’ll arrive back here in Pahoa by 4:30 this afternoon.

The sparkling water is entrancing during the short periods the sun peeked out during our long drive.
Lava rock and crystal-like water.

We’re so excited about their arrival and will surely enjoy the two weeks the six of us will have together before our other two little families arrive on the 21st. Tom and I will move next door on the 20th to make room for the others arriving on the 21st.

The clouds rapidly wafting across the sky along with the vegetation creates a pretty scene.

While I stay behind today, I’ll clean the house and prepare tonight’s meal by chopping, dicing, and cooking meat for tacos and taco salads, surely kid-friendly food.

Wooly sheep reaching for a morsel.

Yesterday, we took off on yet another scenic drive along the coast taking more lovely photos to share. In every direction, we find ourselves in awe of the beauty surrounding us on this lush island. 

Ah, seeing animals in our travels always makes us smile inspiring us to stop for a photo.

Less inhibited than Oahu which has almost one million people, the Big Island of Hawai’i, the largest of the islands has a population of over 185,000 based on a 2010 census. This link illustrates the difference in sizes and populations.

Dad and baby goat resting under the shade of a tree as we drove by.

Maui, the island we left Monday has a population of around 145,000 although Hawai’i is almost five times larger in area than Maui. As a result, there are many unpopulated areas, some of which we’ve already had the opportunity to visit on our road trips on both the eastern and southern sides of the island.

It appears these are papayas, often seeing growing in Hawaii.

Without a doubt, we’ll be venturing out with family over the next few weeks further exploring the island discovering new exquisite terrain and vegetation.

Our attraction to chickens continues wherever we may be, especially when we see them wandering about in a “free-range” manner. At the grocery store, we purchased free-range and organic eggs and chickens when possible. Such a dozen here in the islands in $8 a dozen. Add 12 oz. of bacon for another $8.  That’s one pricey homemade breakfast. Many food prices in Hawaii are reasonable but a few imported and organic items are outrageous.

As Tom and I explored these past days, we realized this is the Hawaii that we love, not the high rise hotels and busy tourist areas. Instead, we are in awe of the quiet remote, almost hidden, forested, and ocean areas that have existed for millions of years created by volcanic activity at varying periods of time. This reader friendly article further explains the formation of the islands.

Why does our rental car have an exterior antenna as shown in the photo as I stepped out of the car? I thought these were obsolete. None of our rental cars in foreign countries had them.

As promised for today, we’ve included some of the photos we took on our drive through the Red Road on Highway 137 witnessing the pristine beauty of what appears relatively untouched other than a smattering of hidden homes and farms along the way.

Occasionally, we’d spot an entrance to a house with yet more plants living their properties.

We’ll be back tomorrow with new photos and stories of the joy of being together with family after so long a period of time apart.

Have a fabulous weekend.

                                            Photo from one year ago today, December 6, 2013:

Leon, the owner of Jabula Lodge, became a fast friend with whom we spent many enjoyable hours in Marloth Park, took us on our first game drive in the park. For multiple sightings on this game drive, please click here.