Sunday, May 11, 2008

The "Squirrels" of Kauai

Within moments of being on the ground in Kauai, I noticed a strange phenomenon. Chickens. Hawaiians call them "moa." They were everywhere. At first I thought it was just a loosely guarded farm area we were going through. Then, when I had been to several places on the island, I realized they were omnipresent. Roosters were cock-a-doodle-doing at all hours of the day everywhere we went. Hens scurried along with chicks in tow. Parks were full of them. I called home one night and talked to Sweetness and told her about the rampant chickens. She said, "Are they the squirrels of Kauai?" Indeed, they are. While I am sure that the water off the coast has abundant fish, the island itself is full of chickens. I was pretty pleased.

The second day we were there we took a boat ride around the island with the hope of going snorkeling. Unfortunately, the swells were too big and they left the water churned up and full of sharks. The island was beautiful from the boat. The only word that I can think of to adequately describe the Napali coast of Kauai is mystical. There are these great huge cliffs that are green and sheer at the same time, with narrow dark canyons between them. We also visited one of the tropical botanical gardens on the island and had a fabulous time just wandering almost on our own through an Eden-like garden with wild orchids and lush foliage everywhere.

I can't say I was super excited to come home after such a lovely adventure. You know you've had a good vacation when you really want to stay. But here I am, back home with my nose stuck in my books again. A little jet lagged, but a little more relaxed than I was a week ago.