Day #277 in lockdown in Mumbai, India hotel…What a difference a day makes!…16 days and counting…

The intensity of the glow changed as the magma at the crater burst into many explosions.

Today’s photos were from this date in 2014 when we visited erupting Mount Kilauea with our kids and grandkids during their visit to join us on the Big Island, Hawaii, for the holidays. They were all so busy running around taking their photos, we never got a photo of all of us together that night, although we wish we had. For the story, please click here.

Last night, after a good night’s sleep, I felt much better, more upbeat, and positive. I certainly was feeling frustrated yesterday, especially while preparing the post, thinking of all of the mishaps on Christmas Day as described in detail here. I don’t believe I’ve ever whinged quite much in a position as I did in that post, not even on some of our most challenging days.

The trees impeded a portion of our views but ultimately gave us a better perspective of the glow.

Oddly, getting it “off my chest” here provided me with a modicum of relief that has followed me well into today, and I am fine once again, hopeful, optimistic, and my usual chipper self. It didn’t hurt to read that South Africa stated that the new supposed more lethal variance of Covid-19 is not an issue at this point.

It’s incredible how our emotions are impacted by poor sleep. We’ve particularly noticed this on long travel days when we may be flying in the middle of the night, resulting in a layover for several hours to board another long flight. Many of those travel days often resulted in 24 hours or more with little to no sleep.

The glow was in its full glory. What a sight to behold!

Neither of us can sleep sitting up on a flight, although we may be able to doze off in short spurts for an hour or two. In our youth, staying up all night wasn’t as tricky. A short nap the next day would put us back on track. But, as we’ve aged, we find those up-all-night scenarios have a significant impact on how we feel until, again, we can sleep through the night.

The most challenging lack of sleep experience we’ve had in our travels was on December 1, 2013 (see the post here), when we flew from Mombasa, Kenya to Nelspruit/Mpumalanga/Kruger with one nightmarish situation after another. By the time we arrived in Marloth Park, we’d been traveling for over 30 hours.

The crowd roared with excitement as it exploded.

The level of exhaustion at the end of that trip was beyond anything either of us had ever experienced. But, arriving in Marloth Park after the hour-long ride from the airport to discover a plethora of wildlife wandering the bush and the dirt roads sent us into such a state of ecstasy, we forgot all about being tired.

I don’t expect our enthusiasm to be much different now. However, it may even be exacerbated by the fact that we were finally able to leave this confinement in Mumbai, India, after almost ten months, to be back in our “happy place.”

Preferring not to use any flash to avoid disturbing others, Tom was a little muted in this photo. 

Our scheduled flight with Emirates Airlines on January 12th from Mumbai to Johannesburg is still booked today. We’ll continue to watch each day for any potential changes. If there were to be any changes, we’re hoping to know before we head to the airport in the middle of the night. We’ll surely be keeping an eye out, several times a day, over the next 16 days.

We’re excited to share today’s repeated photos from our visit to the lava-flowing Mount Kilauea while our kids and grandkids visited us in Hawaii in 2014. What a fantastic experience for all of us! How many adults and kids have an opportunity in their entire lifetime to see lava flowing? It was an adventure.

Shortly before the sun went down, we were separated from the family and unable to get a group photo as we’d hoped. Instead, Tom took this of me and the telescope. 

As we reviewed past experiences in these months of repeated photos, we realized how extensive our travels have been and the myriad of past adventures we’ve had along the way. If by no fault of our own, we had to end this journey due to Covid-19 limitations, we comfort ourselves in the knowledge that we’ve been blessed to see more than we ever dreamed possible in a lifetime.

As Tom always says, “We are humbled and blessed.” So true. So very true.

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, December 27, 2019:

This photo was posted on this date in 2014 and again, one year ago today, when our family visited Mount Kilauea on the Big Island of Hawaii. This was my favorite shot of the evening with the backdrop of the glow of the lava. For more, please click here.

Mount Kilauea….Remembering our Big Island experience in 2014-2015 when we saw lava for the first time…

This was my favorite shot of the evening we spent in Kilauea National Park with the backdrop of the glow from Mount Kilauea. For more details from our post, please click here

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

A baby kudu found comfort standing at the base of this tree when there was lots of action in our yard.
Throughout the world, the news is continually tracking the progression of the eruption and subsequent earthquakes of Mount Kilauea on the Big Island of Hawaii. We are paying particular attention to the details as they continue to unfold.
These trees provided a backdrop perfect for taking photos.

It was Christmas, 2014 when we rented two houses next door to one another while our family came to visit for the holiday. They began arriving in early December and the last didn’t depart until early January 2015.

Many months prior to our arrival in Pahoa on the Big Island we’d begun worrying that our planned family holiday would be challenging if we had to select a different location with space for the 14 of us, of there was an evacuation of Pahoa.

Smoke rising from the lava flowing in Pahoa, where we lived for six weeks in 2014/2015. We were concerned we’d have to evacuate. Click here for this post.

It was Christmas in Hawaii, one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world.  There are too many posts we uploaded at that time to fully describe the story of our time in Pahoa and the interesting and unusual aspect of living in an area with the prospect of flowing lava reaching the holiday homes.

Numerous power poles located in the path of the lava flow had been covered in fire-retardant materials to prevent the flow from destroying the power to the area.  For this post, please click here.

 The first post in the succession began on December 2, 2014, when we’d arrived on December 1st and ended on January 14, 2015, as indicated here. Here’s a photo below of the backyard facing the Pacific Ocean from the backyard of one of the two houses we rented, located next door to one another, each with an astounding view.

The next-door neighbor’s chair gives a good perspective of the massive size of these waves in front of the two houses we rented on the Big Island from this post.

As concerned as we were about the situation we were bound and determined to have as good a time as we could with the family and, if we had to evacuate, we’d figure out a solution.

The swirls in the moving lava were interesting to see firsthand.  For more, please click here.

Shortly before Christmas, the nearby shopping center where we purchased groceries, supplies, and gas, was closed due to fears that the lava was headed that way. It was an unusual experience to be shopping at the market with huge discounts the day before the store was closing supposedly for good, with the lava.

During this period, we discovered that many homeowners in the area had already packed and left their homes, fearful of the arriving lava flow.  They moved out all of their belongings and waited, living in other areas as to what would transpire.  What a hardship for all of them!

To see the red-hot lava between these lava rocks only required a bit of zoom. We couldn’t believe we were with our family and all of us were able to see lava flowing for the first time in our lives. For this post, please click here.

Now, as the residents of Leilani Estates struggle with this same reality they’re more certain their homes are at risk of being taken out by the massive lava flows and/or damaged severely by earthquakes. The fate of the area is uncertain over the long haul. 

Signs such as this were posted everywhere. Click here for the post.

In any case, we enjoyed our time in Pahoa and now we pray for the safety and recovery of those who’ve lost so much in the wake of this violent mountain’s continuing eruptions and earthquakes.

This is a photo I took of a photo of when the lava crossed Apa’a Street on October 25th.
See this link for the news report.

If you’d like to read more on this, please click this link. To watch any one of numerous live feeds of the volcano, please click here.

A barn or garage that survived the lava flow as it crawled down the road.  For this post, please click here.

 Tomorrow, we’ll share photos of our fabulous day at Frikkie’s Dam in Lionspruit wildlife area with Louise and Danie’s friends, meeting new people while sharing stories of wildlife and world travel. Although each of the braai’s participants has diverse and interesting backgrounds, we all shared a common interest in our love of the beauty and magic of Marloth Park.

See you soon!  Have a great day!

Photo from one year ago today, May 7, 2017:

Captain Rick Sullivan chatted with us in Dizzy’s Jazz Bar aboard Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas as we made our way toward North America. He invited us to a special function enabling us to do a story. His warm demeanor and superb sense of humor have made sailing aboard this ship a sheer delight. For more photos, please click here.

Lava is on the move again, faster this time…Closer this time…Check out the year ago photo below! One of our favorites!

Yesterday morning we took this video of the waves in our “backyard” in Pahoa, on the Big Island.

This morning’s news announced that the lava flow from Mount Kilauea has escalated in speed advancing toward the strip mall where we shopped on Monday afternoon.

Apparently, the gas station owner at that strip mall will be selling off the gas at discount prices so that he can drain his storage tanks to fill them with water to avoid explosions when the lava arrives.  

Oh, my. We’ve yet to see the lava since it’s illegal to go into the area where it’s flowing. A viewing area is being set up at the Pahoa Transfer Station that will soon be open to the public for viewing. As soon as that is available we’ll all be heading that way to take photos to share here. This is a phenomenon one most likely would never have the opportunity to see in a lifetime. 

The backside of the first house, where we’re now living, on the coast in Pahoa.

Now that we’re in the first house, we’re surprisingly less anxious about the lava flow than we were from afar.  If we have to leave when our family arrives, we’ll figure it all out. All that matters is the safety and well-being of our family and the citizens of the area.

At this point, the lava is several miles away. At its current rate of flow at 1200 feet per day considering how many miles we are from the current flow, it could conceivably reach the ocean where we are located in about 30 days. 

In 30 days, most of our family members will be on their way back to the mainland, leaving only two remaining, our daughter-in-law, and one granddaughter staying until January 9th. If there is a risk, we’ll certainly send them home earlier than planned and find other accommodations for Tom and me.

Of course, the rate of the flow could change at any time and all of our calculations would be a moot point. We’ll continue to watch the local news for daily updates.

The waves are amazing whether the tide is high or low, although high tide certainly adds to the excitement.

However, we can’t speculate any further than that which we know at this point. We choose not to worry or fuss over this. More so, we’re fascinated with this amazing fact of nature over which no one has control.

As for the house, we’re content. With screens on the windows, we have everything wide open for the amazing ocean breezes.  Last night, we slept with the window open for the first time in so long I can’t recall. It was so cool that we left the fan off and cuddled up under the comforter. There’s no AC in the house.

Yesterday, at high tide at 11:48 am, we spent considerable time outside in the rear yard of the house watching and taking videos of the huge waves. Neither of us had ever seen anything like it. With the windows open, we can feel the ocean spray while inside the house when standing near the windows.

The wear and tear on houses this close to the sea and surf is unreal. The house is well maintained but obvious signs of the destructive nature of the salty sea air are everywhere especially on the exterior of the house especially where there are any metal or wood surfaces.

On the inside of the house, the curtain rods, shower rods, faucets, and some window handles show signs of corrosion due to the salty air and spray. We’re sure this s a major concern for owners of properties in such close proximity to the ocean all over the world.

After the steps collapsed under our feet on our anniversary in Belize on March 7, 2013, during which we were injured, we hesitated to step out onto the lanai in the upper-level master bedroom. Click here for that story and photos we posted on March 9, 2013.

This morning I slept until 7:45 after awakening several times during the night while getting used to the sounds of the sea. This was what I saw the moment I stepped out of bed.

The lanai upstairs seems very sturdy but then again, so did the steps in Belize. We’ll proceed with caution and also advise our family members to do the same.

In the interim, we’re mesmerized by the roaring sea out the door. The roaring sound of the surf is almost earsplitting and we’re loving every moment. The house is relatively shaded by coconut and palm trees but there’s a perfect spot in the yard where we were able to languish in our usual hour in the warming sun.

As we lounged yesterday, we had a clear view of the house next door to which Tom and I will move on December 20th in a mere 17 days and then moving back to this house again on January 3rd when the contract on the second house ends as most of the family departs. Thus, we have to pack three more times (including the day we leave this island). 

Tomorrow, at last, we’ll post interior photos of the house. We have been a bit sidetracked with Mother Nature’s antics. She’s quite a gal, isn’t she?

                                            Photo from one year ago today, December 3, 2013:

Okee Dokee, our lovely driver and friend with whom we’re still in touch regularly, took this photo of us with a giraffe behind us on the road near our new home, of the day we arrived in Marloth Park. The wonder of it all continues to amaze us to this day. I can’t wait to return! For details, please click here.