Friday, July 31, 2009

Immaturity Unlimited - All Aboard!

Aloha Playmates!

Welcome to the ALL LEGO Post

Click on Photos to Return to Childhood.
I always wanted a Medieval Market Village!

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”

OOOOOO! Only $109 USD !

“I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things... I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind.”
Leo F. Buscaglia

Miniature Village People!

"Macho Macho Toys. . . .I Wanna Play with Macho Toys."

See the reflection of my giant camera & hands?

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.”
Joseph Chilton

Giant Camera Hands Looming Over the Casting Call

“You can't have everything. Where would you put it?”
Stephen Wright

Arg! $109 USD again! The Pirate Ship comes Separately

It is better to play than do nothing.

Choo Choo!!!!

“I didn't get a toy train like the other kids. I got a toy subway instead.
You couldn't see anything, but every now and then
you'd hear this rumbling noise go by.”
Stephen Wright

Ala Moana Shopping Center now boasts it's own Lego store! If you are in Honolulu on August 15th you can join the youthful throng (of all ages!) oooo-ing and ahhh-ing over a major exhibit of Lego-built wonders at center stage.

But listen here, if you are anything like me, do yourself a favor and stay away from the L Store itself!! I don't remember playing with anything like the exciting and detailed products I saw in the place!

Like most Hawaii residents, we live in a rather compact space. I got as far as the cash register with my "Pirate Ship & Hideout" and an amazing green locomotive before I snapped out of it!

The diminutive scenes of city life on display, and the legions of distinct little Lego people populating them, made my head swim with their detail and complexity. You could happily drop some major bucks there; so if you DO go, bring your credit cards, and perhaps a child or two for "cover."
A L O H A! Cloudia

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Happy Cat and Honu

(click on photos to be amazed!)
The Moving Hand Writes, and Having Writ - Moves On; Dissolving to Sunset.

"Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter can be said to remedy anything."
Kurt Vonnegut

Very Nice Gesture, Local Boy!
Hawaii folk competed with Pennsylvania fans to vote him into the All Star Game.

"As you journey through life take a minute every now and then to give a thought for the other fellow. He could be plotting something."
Hagar the Horrible

Happy Cat Hawks Miniature Shoes

"The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them."
Albert Einstein

"Remember to go outside everyday and walk on the Earth and look around at the beauty – the birds, the trees, the flowers blooming. Put your mind at ease by remembering the cycles of Nature, which are endless and renewing constantly. We are part of that Nature – and are also renewing.
Don’t lose faith in that which is timeless-your heart, soul and nature.
We are all related"
Mitakuye Oyasin

A Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle, a Honu, was rescued off of the west coast of far Kauai with a chunk missing from her shell due to a strike by a boat propeller.
They named her "Ding" and brought her to Oahu for repairs and recuperation.
Everyone involved loved Ding, for she had "dinged" their hearts. It was thus with a tinge of sadness that they bid her "Aloha" once she was healed, happy, and sporting a
partly-fiberglass shell.
I'm happy to report that she has been spotted capering once again in the surf off west Kauai.
Next time I'm out in my kayak, I'll ask the turtles to send her our regards.
I'm certain our message will get through!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

What the Moon Smells Like

A l o h a !
Come inside
(click on photos to enlarge)
Tropic Moon, why you look so small up there?"

"Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads."
Erica Jong

The Natives are . . .

"The covers of this book are too far apart."
Ambrose Bierce

Flapping in the breeze. My jaws?
NO!! Flags!

"Nothing can bring you peace but yourself."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

When astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins returned from their history-making journey to the moon, 40 years ago this Summer, they splashed into the Pacific about 800 miles southwest of Hawaii.

Thus my island home of Oahu was the first solid land under their feet. It was not their first isle visit, as the Big Island's Mauna Kea had hosted their pre-flight training among her other-worldly rocks in a place now known as Apollo Valley.

Once back upon US soil, the astronauts had fun complying with customs and immigration regulations. Official documents thus record that they arrived from "The Moon" aboard "Flight 11" arriving at "Honolulu Hawaii." In answer to the health question regarding "conditions on board that which may lead to the spread of disease" they answered honestly (gulp): "To be determined."

A customs declaration was also dutifully filed regarding the 47 pounds of Moon Rocks they had obtained. Aboard the gleaming, modified Airstream trailer, that served as their 21 day quarantine, the astronauts and flight surgeon William Carpentier (along with NASA technician John Hirasaki) were the first humans to observe the naked lunar minerals inside the Earth's atmosphere. Though they looked like "ordinary rocks" there was one interesting thing about these rocks. They smelled like burnt gun powder.
A L O H A, Earthlings!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summer Wool Gathering

Aloha, friends!!
Click on photos to enlarge
"I never liked the middle ground - the most boring place in the world.
Louise Nevelson

"If you genuinely have something to say, there is someone
who genuinely needs to hear it."
Arnold Patent

"Life is getting up one more time than you have been knocked down"
John Wayne

Recently, fossilized bones that are thousands of years old, have been found here on Oahu. They tell of giant flightless geese (with 6 foot wingspans) who once lived on an island very different from the one we see today.
To the slow growing trees, we are just a blur. The ancient mountains have barely noticed our presence yet.
Some days I'm just a flightless bird
preening my useless wings. . . . .
A L O H A, Cloudia

Monday, July 27, 2009

Paddle Girl

Welcome to Waikiki!

Don't worry.
No one will be paddled in this post! -
Goodbye Wil, Heff, & Bama Trav;-)

We're talking about kayak paddling, silly!
That's my baby, right by the hatch (door to you) for a quick getaway when blogging gets too intense.

Join us out there!

See the reflection of me taking this picture?

Time To GO!

I hadn't used my kayak in over a year!
Now I go out almost every day.

It's peaceful on the water, and I get to see my home
from a different perspective than usual.

Out there,
I like to sing nonsense songs to myself,
or think about things I've read that day;
perhaps something I saw on YOUR blog.

On my first voyage after so long, I saw a sea turtle!
The head broke the water just in front of me,
and we met eye to eye.
"Where have you been all this time?!"
was the message I got.
And he was right!
What's more important than

"Show up! Be enthusiastic!
Put some energy into the life you're living now!
How will anyone ever be impressed by your star-like quality if you're waiting to cultivate that quality until you become a star?"
Marianne Williamson
A L O H A! Cloudia

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Klever Kate Spade

Welcome to Sunday in. . .
Waikiki? Why, It's Klever Kate Spade's store
in the Royal Hawiian Shopping Center.

The left window says: "Waikiki," The right one: "New York."

Let's get a closer look, shall we?
Yellow Taxis!

Looks Like Broadway at rush hour!

But what will represent Waikiki?

Looks like . . .

Hula rush hour!

Kultural Kolonialism?

A l o h a ha ha ;-) Cloudia

Saturday, July 25, 2009

My Little Friend

A L O H A!
Welcome to another amazing day in Waikiki
click on photos to enlarge
Palms Rejoicing in a Splendid Trade Wind

“Let the field be joyful, and all that is therein:
then shall all the trees of the wood rejoice. . .”

Who's this little fellow?

"It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations,
if you live near him."
J. R. R. Tolkien

Look! He's puffed out his throat for us to see!

"Always speak politely to an enraged Dragon."
Steven Brust


This land is animate

yours is too.

Great, TOO great

and small

exceedingly small,

the power's the same:


An abundance of presents.

(for you

and for me.)

So Dance

in gratitude;


and BE



A L O H A! Cloudia

Friday, July 24, 2009

View Planes

A L O H A !
Glad to see YOU, Friend ;-)
click on photos to enlarge
See the tan hill, behind the white building with the red roof,
in the lower right corner? That is the Pu`u (hill) O' Kaimuki that we visited before:

This is the view from Pu`u O Kaimuki looking
Mauka (mountainward) toward Wilhelmina Rise.

Here (from the top of the Pu`u) we look down
on the adjacent fire house tower.

On top of the Pu`u, we feel close to Diamond Head
that looms like a protective big brother-hill.

View from Wilhelmina rise makai (sea-ward) towards Diamond Head;
But where is the Pu`u? Where's the fire house tower capped with red?
Hint: The top photo is taken from the same perspective as this one.
Click on the photo to enlarge, then look at the lower-right area, and you will be at the top of this post!
Circular logic, eh?

From below, the mountains look just like toys don't they?
From the mountainside, the land below appears just as diminutive.
Things that appear so OBVIOUS to us, appear very different to those standing elsewhere.
Let's spend as much time trying to see through the eyes of the "other"
as we do trying to convince the "other" of our
All a matter of Perspective!

A L O H A! Cloudia

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Little Bit Heroic

Welcome to Dusk in Waikiki

The Reflective Time of Day

“I certainly don't regret my experiences because without them, I couldn't imagine who or where I would be today. Life is an amazing gift to those who have overcome great obstacles, and attitude is everything!”
Sasha Azevedo

“Imaginary obstacles are insurmountable.

Real ones aren't." Barbara Sher

A Poetess
"Sometimes it's worse to win a fight than to lose.
Billie Holliday

Flirting With The Wind

"If you seek to find faults in others, you will not be dissapointed. You are sure to find them. But, if you go out to discover the good in [those] about you, you will find what a host of heroes and saints live in your homes and shops and streets. Look for the best instead of the worst."

Paul Osumi

Did those moon-landing astronauts have anything in common with the pioneers who settled North America?

Of course they did. Something undefinable. There is some shared knowing, some shared yearning there.

In exactly the same way, our shared humanity with extraordinary people is not negligible.
I'm not exhorting you to be all you can be, or to aim for the stars.

Rather, I'm bringing attention to the ignored but undeniable heroism in you and in me.

We each address and wrestle with the same life enigmas, choices, and conundrums as the most celebrated characters of theatre, philosophy, literature, history.

So here's to the every day heroes.
Here's to US!
A L O H A ! Cloudia

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hawaii Flies

A l o h a!
Welcome to the year 1929
and the first commercial flights in the Isles of Hawaii Two eight-passenger Sikorsky S-38 amphibian planes flew three weekly round trips from Honolulu to Maui and to the Big Island (Hawaii). Note the outrigger canoe!
"The most beautiful dream that has haunted the heart of man since Icarus is today reality."
— Louis Bleriot

"There is no sport equal to that which aviators enjoy while being carried through the air on great white wings."
— Wilbur Wright, 1905

Sikorsky S-43s came into service in 1935.
Flying Boat!

The first commercial aircraft in the isles, 1929
(right before the Sikorskys) a Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker.
Above Photos Courtesy of Hawaiian Airlines

In 1941 Inter-Island Airways changed its name to Hawaiian Airlines and traded up to the classic, 24-passenger, DC-3.

Interestingly, that original Bellanca shown above has been located in the possession of an Oregon collector and is being restored to flying condition. The legendary Pratt & Whitney aircraft engine company is collaborating with Hawaiian Air Lines (HAL) to return the grandpa aeroplane to Honolulu for special 80th Anniversary flights and exhibitions.

Islanders are proud when HAL tops the "on time" list year after year, especially since her little sister, Aloha Airlines closed down last year; That was like a death in the family.

Today, HAL flies worldwide charter services, and scheduled service to Pago Pago, American Samoa, Nuku'alofa, Tonga, and to Western Samoa.

We locals especially enjoy flying "our" airline between the West Coast and Home with daily flights to Los Angeles,
San Francisco and Seattle. When you get on the plane,
you're on Hawaiian turf. AHHHHH!

Let's enjoy the sights, shall we?
(Bonus Color Pics ;-)

Hawaiian Skies

"The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine, bracing and delicious. And why shouldn't it be? —it is the same the angels breathe."
— Mark Twain
Limpid, Lazy, Lotus (-ussess)

"Man must rise above the Earth—to the top of the atmosphere and beyond—for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives."
— Socrates

Golden Palms Wave "Aloha."

So do I

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sister Cities


Welcome back to



click on photos to enlarge! "You can kid the world. But not your sister."
Charlotte Gray

The Royal Hawaiian Hotel beckons.

"A sister smiles when one tells one's stories - for she knows where the decoration has been added."
Chris Montaigne

Punchbowl Crater stands sentinel behind Royal Elementary School

"I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones."
Attributed to a 4-year-old named Lauren

"In the cookies of life, sisters are the chocolate chips."

Honolulu and Hiroshima are celebrating 50 years as Sister Cities!

The two municipalities have been sibling cities since June 15, 1959; It is a relationship that began with the "People to People Program" of President Dwight Eisenhower, promoting peace and mutual understanding.

A delegation from Hiroshima was in our town recently to observe the anniversary.

"5o years of friendship have built reciprocal tourism and economic opportunities," said Wayne Miyao, president of Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai and chairman of Hiroshima Hawaii Sister State Committee.

"World War II started in the Pacific in Hawaii with Pearl Harbor and ended in Hiroshima tragically. We are forever linked in war; so we should be linked in peace and in business and culture," said Miyao, a Big Island (Hawaii) resident who traces his ancestral roots to Okinawa.

The recent three-day visit by Hiroshima's 40-plus member delegation concluded at Honolulu City Hall with a signing ceremony renewing the relationship. Hiroshima's tourism division also hosted an exhibit at Windward Mall and entertained at Ala Moana Center.

This highly publicized visit by Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba and his delegation, followed by a stopover by the Japanese emperor himself, should help encourage Japanese travelers to visit the islands.

"There's a lot of caution being exercised by Japanese visitors due to the economy and swine flu," Honolulu's Mayor Hannemann said. "Having high-ranking Japanese visitors come to our city helps dispel concerns."

Honolulu is to send our own delegation to Japan in November, when that city celebrates "Honolulu Day."

Hiroshima is planning a "winter-wonderland" experience during this historic year, said Daisuke Yano, director of Hiroshima's Tourism Division, who was in our town for the observance.

"Since Honolulu does not have the winter season, Hiroshima would like them to visit during the winter to feel the cold and see the snow." Yano said.

Roughly 300,000 visitors come to Hiroshima annually.

No word on how many are Hawaii folks seeking a chill.

A L O H A! Cloudia

Monday, July 20, 2009

40 Years Ago Today. . .

Men from the planet Earth. . . .
Walked on the MOON. . . . .

They Came in Peace for all Humankind. . . .

You can see the imprint of Alan's moon-boot on several of these paintings. He also used moon-dust scraped off of his space suit as well.
You can see more of Alan Bean's art here:

All Art courtesy of Alan Bean. All rights reserved

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
Mark Twain

Aloha! Cloudia

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Back in the Day

A L O H A!
Welcome back to Waikiki
(Pull up a Swanson TV dinner)
"And that's the way it is. . . "

Pigeon Party
"Did you bring any crumbs?"

Torch Ginger blossoms have blossoms!

Watching Paul McCartney return to the Ed Sullivan theatre awakened many 60's memories, and begged perspective on the life that unfolded for the kid-me who watched the Beatles perform from that stage in 1963. . .

And this weekend marks the 4oth anniversary of the Apollo Moon Landing (yes, I capitalized it) - oh and of Woodstock (but we've already discussed that).

I remember the grainy pictures of men in diving suits planting a curiously limp flag amidst that "magnificent desolation" as Buzz called it. I remember stiff Nixon speaking to them on the phone as we all watched. I remember walking outside and looking up at the moon. "Humans are there," I thought; "We are there." And the whole world from Africa to Asia to Europe celebrated the achievement. We were'nt quite so hated then. The liberation from fascism in WWII still painted us as the "good guys." I remember that Wilson Pickett ROCKED big time that night on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, the prototypical host.

I remember tiny black and white TVs wheeled into an elementary school classroom, all of us (teachers included) mesmerized by the countdown. "3...2...1...Kickoff" as we watched John Glenn and the other Mercury astronauts leave the Earth and look back at it as only God had done before.

I remember seeing adults cry for the first time, they were my teachers, on that Thursday afternoon when they sent us home early. President Kennedy had been shot.
The world was still, oppressively still like a wake. For three days we were glued to the TV. "Mom! Someone shot Oswald!" I remember the reaction on the sheriff's face captured in newspaper stills.
I remember John John saluting the caisson and the handsome, lone, black horse behind it in the procession.

I remember the police riots and convention floor fascism of the Chicago Democratic Convention in '69. (I've always followed the conventions). "Mom! Do you see what's happening?!" "I'm only glad you're not there!" (You Crazy kid who turned out to be right about so many things.)
I remember watching the Watergate hearings all that weird Summer.

In a black and white world where we had three TV stations to choose from, where the narrative of public life was amazingly uniform (if stultifying), the authority who explained it all like the One True Patient Adult was Walter Cronkite.

News wasn't liberal or FOX; it was news delivered by newsmen (yes, overwhelmingly men) who were professional and didn't carp or advocate. They informed. We all have unconscious bias, but news was supposed to be about facts. They tried to be objective.

All the things above that I remember, I remember largely through the lens of my TV. I remember Walter telling us the story, sharing OUR modern story.
When he announced Kennedy's death and took off his glasses, that was a more powerful moment than all the posturing and shouting we see in a week of cable news today.

If you didn't live through all of that, it is impossible to explain just how much of a giant Walter was. From the WWII beaches of Normandy, to the assassination of Dr. King, to the relentless nightly spectacle of Viet Nam, Walter was the narrator of our times. When he expressed the opinion that 'Nam was a morass, LBJ turned from the TV and said: "If I've lost Walter, I've lost middle America.

There will never be another figure like him. Uncle Walter.
I remember looking up at that '60s sky as Canada Geese sailed before a harvest moon. I remember the smell of burning leaves, and the sound of a train from far away. "How old will I be in the year 2000?"

I can't imagine a person becoming a success who doesn't give this game of life everything he's got."
Walter Cronkite
Today I've used "Times" as the font of the day as tribute. Be sure to wash the black ink off of your hands before your touch anything.
A L O H A! Cloudia