Back to normal

I seemed to have defeated the cough, and feel so much better even though there is a little residual.

The week was pretty much devoted to seals, although on Monday we had EKK (E Kanakapila Kokou). This week was Kenneth Kakuakani (Pandanus Club), an Emmy winning Hawaiian music group. We were responsible for registering people and counting the “donations” at the end. EKK has incredible groups that come from all the islands, and there’s a suggested donation of $5 per person. I find it depressing that many visitors give practically nothing, in fact the average donation is only about $3. We saw some couples that would give $5 for two people and some that passed the donation basket completely. $3 per person doesn’t even cover the cost of putting the show on. It amazes us that some people do this.

I scored a nice lei for my head made by a lovely lady at the show.

IMG_3080. First time visitors to the program get similar leis.

On Tuesday we met friends, Marilyn and Mike, of our good friends, Anton and Marcia, along with two of their friends, David and Jane, all from Madison (officially Marilyn and Mike have retired to Oregon, but we’ll think of them as Wisconsinites) at the Honu Bar to watch the sunset. We continued to Keoki’s for dinner and the famous Hula Pie. We had a very pleasant evening, talking all things Kauai and Wisconsin – it’s always fun to connect with people from back home. Dave and Jane have other friends coming here in a couple of weeks, so we’ ll get to meet them soon as well.

And speaking of friends, Bob and Caryl Terrell are here on their ‘every other year’ visit. We’ll spend more time with them next week. In the meantime, I’m getting ready to go to Maui with 3 women friends (all seal volunteers) to
watch whales and ‘just get away’. And when I get back, Charlie’s business partner Doug and his wife Julie will be visiting us. It will be a busy few weeks!

A highlight was when we had a meeting in which the head scientist of our seal program, Charles Littnan, gave us an update on the state of the monk seal recovery with a cautiously optimistic report that we might be getting close to even and might next year start increasing the population. It makes us feel like we are making a difference.

The end of the week was busy with the seals, every day we would have at least 3 seals per day on the south shore. And of course in different locations, requiring multiple volunteers each hour. We also are feeding Doug and Joanie’s cats – they returned to the mainland due to the unexpected death of Joanie’s brother.

Saturday night found us at the War Memorial auditorium for the 23rd annual Hoike Hula Hawaiian music and hula program. This is a real treat – Leilani Rivera Low is the organizer and main chanter/singer. Plus there was a special guest appearance from her father, Larry Rivera. He’s now 84 years old, but still has a golden voice. He used to perform regularly with Elvis when Elvis visited Kauai. Hula performers came in all age groups, but the star of the evening was a 2 or 3 year old girl, who knew most of the routines, but didn’t quite have the timing down. She put on quite a show of her own!
We ended the night with a beer and hot pretzel at the Kauai Beer Company.

Larry Rivera and Leilani Rivera Low

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The Keiki that was dancing to her own drummer.

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On Saturday, Charlie’s team played at their home field at Eleele and I got to watch him play for the first time. They won their game 16-8. I was trying to keep score and didn’t get any pictures during the play, but got a picture of Barry Werthwine (he’s also a seal volunteer, and was instrumental in getting Charlie on the team) as he finished talking to another team. The routine is that after the games, everyone partakes in a pot luck. Charlie’s team is the West Kauai Seniors and their team jerseys, at least for the first games, are red. They’re getting new jerseys next week.
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Sunday morning, as we were driving past the bus stop at Poipu, I made Charlie turn around and stop to illustrate a typical modern bus stop in Kauai.

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You can’t say that Kauai doesn’t have comfortable bus stops! Well, how about ‘unusual’?

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