Sunday, January 27, 2013

Paw Paw & Family Fruits

One of the few things that I actually enjoy during the summer season is fruit picking.  In my opinion the best fruit and the hardest to come by is the native Paw Paw fruit (click link to learn more).  An indigenous custard-apple like fruit that quite delectable and very hard to find.  Although, once you know where to find it you will easily find it everywhere.  The difficult part is finding them in season before it's all gone, as they ripen very quickly and bruise easily once harvested.  The other thing I've done almost every summer at my current residence is grow habaneros.

This year I have other family members that wanted to experiment and grow a variety of other plants.  During much of planting season we were plagued with a gopher eating most of our young plants.  Even when we fenced off the yard it somehow still managed to get in.  I'm not sure if it's karma but one day during the beginning of fall when I drove home I saw a huge dead animal on the road near the house.  It wasn't a skunk or raccoon but a gopher.  Apparently hit by a car, but how?  It was broad daylight, clear large road with no obstructions, and this thing is huge and surely can't run that fast.  Some birdbrain unaware of the road must have drove right over the poor animal.  I would understand if it was a squirrel since those damn things are terrible at crossing the street and they tend to always head for your wheels anyways.  But this was the very gopher I was fighting off all summer.  It had gotten fat from all the summer foraging and died a very sad death.  I felt bad for the animal and I did the next best thing, I went home, took a shovel and a recycling bin.  Went to the street, carefully put its lifeless body into the bin and carried it into a grassy field as a form of a burial.  I never wanted to harm the thing but it was sad seeing it die because some idiot had to speed through a neighborhood road.

The new planting season will be here soon. I have started germinating my seeds.  I hope no new varmint surprises this year and if there is, I'll be happy to give it a name and hope for the best.  Here are the fruits of my labor from last year!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Summer 2012 @ Nag's Head, NC

I've spent more time at the beach this summer season than I've have in my entire life.  I personally do not enjoy the beach. I find it boring and very mundane sitting around. I hate the heat, the sun, the glare, the dried salt on my skin, and the water.  Yeah I basically hate everything about it yet I still enjoyed myself this past summer. I think it's mainly due to the friends and family I got to spend my time with.

@~10pm, 130 second exposure. I had to hold down the shutter button as I did not bring my remote shutter release. Not fun having to count to 130 and trying to hold still while the wind pushes you around.


I just realized something when I reviewed these photos.  At the beginning of the summer I spent it on the East coast.  The only way to capture the sun near the horizon is during sunrise.  When I traveled to Maui in August, it was difficult to see the sunrise but watched it set daily.  Interesting how in a span of a summer I traveled to two different oceans and saw different aspects of the sun.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

ベジタリズム - Vegetable Rhythm

This video showed up on my FB feed and I saw the most amazing and catchy thing I've seen from Japan in a long time.  The kids dancing are amazing! It really matches the song so well.

Here are the lyrics to the song in Japanese and the translation.  If you want to see more information about this song see Makiko Itoh's explanation: Japanese Culture: What's the story behind the "Vegeta-rhythm" (ベジタリズム, bejitarizumu) video?



きって やいて むいて あげて
にて むして そのままー なまー



かぶに ぽてと せろり ぱせり
かぼちゃ とまと まとめてー なべ
きって やいて むいて あげて
にて むして そのままー
ベジタリズムだよー なまー
Vegetables today
If you put them in a pot
with happy thoughts
It's Vegeta-rhythm

Mama with a menu
Papa at work
Everyone with a smile
It's Vegeta-rhythm

Cut them up, grill them, peel them
Simmer them, steam them, as they are - raw
It's Vegeta-rhythm

If you become sad
Put them in a pot
Everyone likes them
It's Vegeta-rhythm

I want to say
I love them
I like them a lot
It's Vegeta-rhythm

Turnips, potatoes, celery, parsley
Kabocha, tomatoes, everything together in a pot
Cut them up, grill them, peel them
Simmer them, steam them, as they are - raw
It's Vegeta-rhythm


Which one is your favorite vegetable?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Honoapiilani Highway

Honoapiilani highway cover much of west Maui.  Ultimately there is really one main road that covers the whole island but the name changes to indicate which part of the island that you're on.  Each of my photos in this set are all taken at the same time but different days.  Also taken at different parts of the island.  I currently do not have any photos of Kahekili Hwy since it's one dangerous road, scary as hell to drive.  It's supposed to be a two lane highway but with the road mergers it becomes one car passing lane.  Next time I'm intrepid enough to drive it I'll take a photo of how close the wheels get to the cliff with no guard rail.  For now enjoy the scenery scenery that is Maui on the highway.

Dry part of the island just outside of Kahului
Just past the aquatic center, notice the wind turbines on the hill side.
Near the recycling center. Beautiful clouds descending.
Just outside of Lahaina.
At the beginning of Honoapiilani Hwy.
Entering into Lahaina. Photo taken on the passenger seat behind the windshield.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

East Maui Road Trip – Part 2

The second half of trip is through the rugged mostly unpaved arid terrain of Maui cow country.  This is where most of the cattle farms are located as there is little vegetation similar to that of the steppe lands in Africa.  It does provide fantastic views of the Pacific ocean and dramatic sky.

Through the years this part of the island has become more and more paved as tourist flock to see this mainly uninhabited part of the island.  10 years ago when I first traversed this area you would hardly see a soul for hours.  Now you will see large vans packed with tourist looking out the window every 10 minutes.  The roads have smoothen out for the most part and what would have taken me at least 6 hours to drive though with patchy dirty road is now newly paved goodness.

If anyone has the time and the energy biking the whole island of Maui is very beautiful and worth while!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

225 x 6

Today on bench two plates on each side x 6 times.  All time best ever! Last week it was only 3.  I still suck at other exercise.  Why the improvement? No clue. I've been eating better and not exercising as much body has more time to rest? Current weight: 137lbs.

Update: 1/15/13 - Benched 235 x 4, all time best record.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

East Maui Road Trip - Part 1

The goal of this trip was quite intrepid from what I remember.  Drive through all of East Maui and hit all of the sights within one day. I really wanted to make it a two day trip to truly make the most of the scenery but it was quite difficult to find accommodation near Hana that is affordable and also on a short notice.  The itinerary for the day was quite simply, get up super early, drive to Kahului, pick up food, bug spray, and other supplies for the day.  Drive on Hana Hwy and stop to see any waterfall, or any other sights that catches our eye.  Stop by Wainapanapa state park to see black sand beach and other sights.  Then the main purpose of the trip, hike on Pipiwai Trail to see the bamboo forest and the waterfall at the end.  Also make sure not to linger and make it back to drive the more arduous second half of the trip to make it home before dark.  Hell of a long day but amazing weather and scenery throughout!

Black sand beach at Wainapanapa State Park
Bamboo Forest on the Pipiwai Trail in Kipahulu Park Reserve