I found myself on two islands recently: The Big Island and Oahu. Comparing them would be to compare siblings, which is to say one is not better than the other; rather, each island possess a unique personality. As with many siblings, one's personality just goes better with certain other personalities. With three of us traveling, one of us often felt that the last place we visited felt better than the place we were.
The differences in our opinions couldn't grow any bigger, evidenced by the fact that the little man loved Waikiki the most. Simply didn't let us forget that he just wanted to return to his beloved Waikiki, with it's beach and ABC stores. Played in the water, made friends, caught fish, and generally behaved well enough.
Note to self: It is important to note that he did have scarlet fever during this portion of the vacation and didn't feel very good. Also, nothing tasted good to him. I find this, now, to be the canary in the mine of whether or not my boy is ill. If he indicates that all fish tastes funny and nothing tastes good, something must be quite wrong in his system or we've ordered terrible food.
Nana Chris fell madly in love with the Big Island, regardless of how much I forced her to drive around and around and around. Drive her around I did, I even poked a hole in the map she navigated us around with. She cried little, complained not at all, and decided that shave ice and shrimp trucks are da bomb. Seriously.
She discovered with much certainty that snorkeling will become part of her life. The rest of the world be damned as she's not getting out of the water and will feed those fish dog biscuits until she's done. The small child and I sat at the shrimp truck having lunch until she pulled herself out of the water and admitted she might be hungry. It makes the most sense that the oldest out of the three of us had the most child-like wonder. Go figure.
For myself, I loved my hat and my jeeps. No joke. I loved the expansiveness of the Big Island and the laid backness of the North Shore. Who knew that I could so easily slip out of this life and into one where I don't do much? It's a whole new me. What I do know is that I need more time to explore and look around. More Friday through Tuesday off, in which I travel relatively close to home, but travel nonetheless. It became very obvious to me that I need more outside time, more time to (sounds so bad) wear my hat and get more sun.
Spring, like I said, sprung me hard.
On my travels, I found that the areas I stayed in did not have the greatest of food offerings. Sammy D's in Kohala tasted very good, fresh, healthy, and cheap. Lulu's in Waikiki hit the spot. RumFire did the job - and then some. However, I couldn't find exactly what I needed to eat the entire time I ran around those islands. Possibly it's just me.
So, I give you the improvised dish made in the Halawa House in Kappa'au:
yellow onions, sliced length wise
garlic, mashed into a paste
bell pepper, cubed
tomatoes, sliced into cubes
jalapeno, sliced into itty-bitty pieces
cilantro, rough chopped handful
salt & pepper, to taste
Heat the pan with a glug or two of olive oil. Saute the onions until soft. Add the zucchini and bell pepper, saute until the bell pepper is soft. Add the garlic, jalapeno, and tomatoes. Saute until it all comes together. Finish with the handful of cilantro and salt & pepper this to taste. Total time should be no more than 12 minutes.
I served this with some Hawaiian beef and the only Merlot I could find. Wine is also not a huge item on the islands - who knew that?