Bill Roper (billroper) wrote,
Bill Roper

That's One Grand Canyon, All Right

Today, we were in Kauai. (Today is Sunday, for those of you not familiar with time-slip theory.)

We weren't scheduled to be here for long -- the ship arrived at 7:00 AM and sailed at 2:00 PM, so there was a limited amount that we could actually do. What the whole group of us had decided to do was to take the bus trip to Waimea Canyon, the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific".

Now, I've seen the Grand Canyon and it's pretty grand. This canyon was no slouch either and came equipped with vegetation, mist (which kindly cleared just after our arrival), waterfalls, and a conveniently placed rainbow. As scenery went, it was top of the heap. There were also a lot of feral chickens wandering around, which you don't normally expect to see.

Kauai has been the site for location filming for a number of movies, including "Jurassic Park". It was also a location site for a much older John Wayne film that was a particular favorite of daisy_knotwise and her mother, "Donovan's Reef". (I've seen at least part of the film and may have seen all of it, but my memory of films seen on TV is occasionally spotty. But it's worth seeing.) A couple of pivotal scenes were filmed at Waimea Canyon, which simply proves that the cinematographer had the sense that God gave a grapefruit. Mind you, they had to drop in some Norfolk pines in pots so that John Wayne could cut one down for use as a Christmas tree, but other than that, they could pretty much rely on the natural scenery.

The prickly pear cacti, on the other hand, appeared to be growing quite naturally on the road up the mountain. It seems that Kauai, like many of the Hawaiian islands, has a wet side (400+ inches of rain a year) and a dry side (10 inches a year). So I guess whoever imported the assorted cacti knew what he was doing.

We drove around the waterfront, saw Niihau ("the Forbidden Island" -- it's privately owned) from a distance of 17 miles or so, and made the obligatory visit to a tourist trap store where Gretchen picked up tchochkies for her co-workers. She wouldn't let me know what she spent. This is probably for the best.

I'm still supposed to pick up macadamia nuts before my co-workers will let me come home. But we have two more stops in the Hawaiian islands, so I have chances to spare yet. And they'll probably have to let me come back anyway, unless my code was -- in some unlikely event -- perfect.

As we left the dock, we got to see the Coast Guard roust out a woman in an outrigger canoe who had parked directly in the shipping channel. Apparently, she had flunked the concept of "right of way".

We're currently sailing around Kauai toward what are supposed to be some spectacular (and otherwise inaccessible) coastal bluffs. The motion of the ship hasn't killed me yet. And given that I actually ate lunch, this is a good thing. :)

And now it's time to go take the shirts out of the washer and put them into the dryer so I have some clothes to wear tomorrow. Our cruise is just past half over.
Tags: musings, vacation

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