Archive for the ‘Big Island Grown’ Category

Backyard Fruit Breakfast

September 2, 2013

My favorite fruits.


Reason #9: The Price of Local Fruit

July 28, 2012

When my bill for a small bag of lychee and 5 lilikoi rang up to $17.65 (lychee = 11.50; lilikoi = $6.15) at a stand at the KCC Farmer’s Market this morning, I wanted to scream that that better be some damn good lychee and lilikoi.  I had just spent most of my money on purely impulse buys. Then I realized that it’s not like they didn’t post the prices next to it.  It’s not their fault that I don’t know one ounce from one pound.  But it got me to thinking why living on Oahu sucks.  If I was on the Big Island, lychee and lilikoi (not to mention guavas, mountain apples, star fruit, mangoes, watercress, oranges, avocados) are FREE.  It grows in the wild–you just need to know where to find them.  Or, you would definitely know someone with a tree.  My dad keeps the household well supplied with the bounty of the land that he picks himself.  And if not, if you end up buying some lychee on the side of the road, the prices are nothing like that on Oahu ($5 per pound on Big Island vs. $8 per pound what I just paid).

So lessons learned.  First, I’m boycotting that fruit stand because those prices are just ridiculous.  And second, as soon as I publish my book and am able to afford to buy lots of land on the Big Island, I’m making a farm that will keep me supplied with all the lychee and lilikoi (and the other stuff) that I want.  That way I’ll never have to buy those things again.  And if the apocalypse should ever happen, I’ll still have food to eat.

Big Island Surf

December 28, 2010








Fashion Heritage

June 1, 2010

Some of the earliest memories of my grandma came from shopping trips she, my mom, and myself took to Hilo to shop at a boutique in the old Kaiko’o Shopping Center (long before Prince Kuhio Plaza was built and spelled the doom of Kaiko’o which then eventually became government offices) so that my grandma could buy sharp-looking suits she would wear to church. Once, she bought a fuschia-colored skirt and jacket suit that she totally rocked.  She certainly loved color, and I think my love of fuschia comes straight from her.  In fact, my mom says that I got my love of clothes from my grandma.  It’s true– whenever I go shopping, I always think, “Grandma would of loved this.”  Hence my newest fuschia purchase:

Fuschia Heels from the Nine West Outlet

Restricted Access Surf

April 18, 2010

I go to Waipi’o Valley more now than when it was in my backyard.  For the first 21 years of my life, I lived in the ex-sugar town of Honoka’a and I could literally count on my two hands how many times I had been down to the valley even though it was only twenty minutes away.  Although my dad is from the valley and I had relatives who lived in the valley, the valley wasn’t someplace I ventured often.  Nevertheless, the times I did go to the valley, I always got the same rush of excitement as I do now.  Or perhaps it wasn’t so much an excitement as it was a sense of feeling privileged that I could venture into the valley while everyone else had to content themselves with staying at the lookout at the top or walk down.

Restricted Access: Most tourists heed the warning; however it is not uncommon for more adventuresome tourists to explicitly violate their rental agreements and take their rentals (even if it doesn't have 4x4) down into the valley, thereby acquiring a very expensive towing bill and living up to the phrase "stupid h----."

The last time I went to the valley was this past Christmas break.  I had a duel purpose for going:  one, I wanted to check out the possibilities of having my wedding on the beach; and two, my fiancee wanted to go surfing.  I have never surfed at Waipi’o–even when it’s small, the water is intimidating to me.  Perhaps it’s just too ice cold.  Or maybe it’s that the water is so dark that I freak myself out thinking about what could possibly be below me in the water.  I grew up hearing the stories of don’t go surfing by yourself there because you might not come back.  I know that’s a total cliche, but here it really is true.  Waipi’o is, after all, a traditional entry point into the Land of the Dead.  And the surf could definitely hasten your journey there–from the crazy rip currents to the sharks that frequent the area.

Surf Check: The waves were small & choppy. But the view--sparkling black sand, towering walls, a tranquil river-- more than made up for it.

Dog Sitting: These 2 adorable dogs occupied themselves on the beach while their owner caught a few waves.

River Crossing: It's harder than it looks.

After the beach, we ventured further into the valley so that my dad could get some watercress.  Come to think of it–the valley seems to offer a bounty of food that can keep one healthy:  protein (moi & other fishes in the ocean, opae in the river), starch (kalo grown by my uncle and others in their taro patches), fruit (guavas, star fruit, etc.), veggies (watercress, taro leaf).

Flying Rocks: Don't drive fast.

Some of my best childhood memories are from the valley.  From the time I slipped in the river and destroyed my camera trying to take pictures of my dad and brother getting opae that my grandpa loved so much, to the time my dad threw net and scored so much moi, to the time my friends and I got stuck in the valley because the truck we were riding in stalled out crossing a deep river, the valley will always be in my mind.  That’s why I wanted to get married there.  Because it was a place with meaning to me. And the pictures would simply be awesome.  And I would have another awesome memory of the valley to add into my mind.