14.09.2012 - 14.09.2012 27 °C
Hi everyone – I know, I’ve been very slack – I have plenty of excuses though. Firstly in Molokai I had a major allergic reaction (more about that later), then Helen hogged the computer in Kauai and we were far too busy for computers in Honolulu attending world premieres and all that………
Back to Molokai – Day three – seems like months ago now rather than days. Today we headed off to the main town in Molokai – it’s called Kaunakakai - there is only one place that can be officially called a town in Molokai and it has one main street, lots of pick-up trucks and no traffic lights – in fact there isn’t a single traffic light on the whole island – we loved the Molokains – they’re so relaxed and friendly – you want to walk across the street in front of an oncoming car – no problems – they just stop their pick-up since you can only go 20 miles an hour anyway – the main street kept us entertained for the whole morning – there were shops that combined beauty treatments with hunting supplies (I kid you not), clothing stores with kitchen wares and the local department store had a full range of fatigues on offer – we could have built a bunker, bought our rifles, decked ourselves out in the latest army gear and nobody would have batted an eyelid. But there were some more normal stores as well. We bought a few sundresses which ended up being quite unique and reasonably priced. Helen bought a hula skirt (and don’t mention the hula skirt to me when we get back – I’m so over it – it’s so large and bulky that it won’t fit in her suitcase so I feel like I’m managing a part-time hula band everytime I travel on a plane with her – did I mention she bought a ukulele as well?). After shopping main street we had lunch in the favourite local diner – and yes, you guessed it – it was burger – this time a shrimp burger with a side of stuffed jalapenos – both were great (surprisingly).
Then we headed to the most famous part of Molokai – Kalaupapa National Park (another Hawaiian place name that starts with “k”) – up until about the mid-1960’s any Hawaiian with leprosy (Hanson’s disease) was shipped out into this peninsula which was formed when lava spewed up from an underground volcano – the only way to get there is by light plane (very light considering we were transported to Molokai in a 10 seater plane) or by mule ride down the side of steep cliffs or a rather strenuous 3.5 mile hike – Helen drew the line at a mule ride so we opted just to go on the hiking track to the look out point. The view is spectacular and the sea cliffs are the highest in the world reaching 1700 feet - It was such a sad story for all the Hawaiians who were dragged away from their families under such horrible circumstances. A priest named Father Damien went to help the people on Molokai and tried to publicise the inhumanity of their treatment – unfortunately he too succumbed to Hanson’s disease like the people he was trying to help and died in the camp. He’s now revered by Hawaiians and there are lots of statues dedicated to him around the islands.
After being moved by the story we headed up to Phallic Rock – yes, that’s what it’s called – its about ½ mile through dense forest until you come to the clearing and there it stands before you in all its…..um…glory – if you touch it apparently it will make you fertile!!! I certainly hope not………
On the way back we stopped off at the Royal Coconut Grove – yes, it’s just not any old coconut on Molokai – these coconuts were planted in 1860s and were reserved for royalty only – now its just one big park and there are signs all over that say “beware of falling coconuts”. This was enough for Helen not to enter but I went ahead anyway – personally I think the signs should be amended to “beware of tripping over a coconut” since there were so many on the ground……….
Having given up on having burgers, we decided we would do our own cooking – and had an omelette on our very pleasant lanai (verandah)………….