Photo Diary of a 2013, Part 2

At the beginning of April, I left the bustle of Asia and came home to this:

The road. 

I flew to New York to attend Columbia’s admitted student’s night and stayed with Albert, an architectural student from Taiwan whom I’d met many years ago through my cousin. He never slept and smoked like a chimney and was constantly complaining about his monumental workload, but ask him if he’d prefer to be studying anywhere else and he’d shake his head. “New York is where I want to be.” His apartment was my temporary home and despite it being dark, with critical windows facing brick walls, I could see how when life is full and you’re doing what you love (and hardly ever come home because you’re at studio), things like that matter just a little less.

“I haven’t slept in three days,” says Albert, “But I’ll sleep when I’m dead (or when I run out of cigarettes).”
I was, obviously leaning towards Columbia but two things helped seal the deal: 1. They gave me more money. 2. I found my dream studio, minus the nightmare of five flights of stairs and no elevator. Also, the passionate urging of others helped. “It’s New York! What the hell are you going to do in the middle of butt-fuck nowhere North Carolina or West Virginia! New York, Betty! New York!!! Every writer’s dream!”  
I have yet to set foot inside that building. 
With the minor detail of where I was to spend the next two years of my life out of the way, it was time to settle into a peculiar routine: three days a week I lunched with my grandfather. I would get to his house around 11AM, read for a half hour, then put together a simple meal while he watched TV or read the paper. We’d eat, chat about things – sometimes he would tell me stories, sometimes he would be quiet and shake his head, wondering what was to become of me. All the time he would think about his old half, my grandmother. Lunch was always short, a thirty minute affair at the end of which I would clear the dishes and ask him if he wanted dessert. 
“None for me,” he would say. But I would push and push and eventually he would share a pineapple cake or have a bite or two of ice cream. We would read for a half hour more and he would retire to take a nap. I would move to the couch and try to continue reading, but eventually, the whirr of the water pump in the fish tank, the breeze from outside and the warming afternoon sun would cause me to nod off and for an hour Grandpa’s house would be silent but for the slow, even breath of an old man and a young woman, an anchor and a sail. 
Because sometimes glasses just don’t cut it. 
And around these afternoons I saw friends… 
Coworkers who turned into great friends, Grace and Enny. 


Babies galore at Lucas’s (on the right!) One Month Celebration held, where else? At Sam Woo’s in Irvine. 
May rolled around and I turned twenty-seven. A damn good age, if you ask me. 

I took a trip to Charleston to see Grace, a cellist who was playing in the Spoleto Orchestra (longer post to come). I fell in love with the south and southern food, but that was expected. I went to my first southern beach and wondered what the hell southern Californians were so proud of. We wore summer dresses. I let my hair down and played bingo and drank with classical musicians who were surprisingly raunchy when they weren’t playing classical music. We walked a lot, ate a ton, and I pretended to understand the opera she got me tickets to.

Woohoo, culture! 
Grace walking at Sullivan’s Beach. 
When we weren’t stuffing our faces with fried everything we were trying to walk it off.  
Like that one ride at Disneyland. 

And immediately after that, my mother suggested an impromptu trip to Kauai. She popped into my room one evening and asked, “How much are tickets to Kauai at the end of May?”

I looked for her, then asked, “Who are you thinking about going with?”

She seemed surprised, “Oh, you! Do you want to go?”

This is what’s called a no-brainer. So we went, just the two of us.

My mother thinks about her mother. 

On our last day there, we went swimming in the hotel pool, then my mother took a nap while I wrote a letter to my brother. When she woke, I asked her how she felt about barbecue. She said fine. I ordered it by phone and drove to pick it up. My mother stayed in the kitchen, peeling papaya and when I returned, I saw that she’d been crying.

“Mom, what’s wrong?”

She started crying again.

“I was just thinking about grandma.”

“What were you thinking about that made you think of grandma?”

In hindsight, it was a stupid and insensitive question, but I think my mother understood what I meant.

“I am so lucky that my daughter can travel with me and we can spend time like this, but I can’t do that anymore with grandma.”

I hugged her, because you can’t really do anything or say anything but hug a person who misses their dead mother.

“Let’s eat outside on the balcony,” I said, and she agreed.

I poured us each half of the small bottle of wine we’d gotten from the airline and when everything was served, she raised her glass to me, something I’ve never seen her do. My mother is not a big drinker.

“I wish you a good happy life in New York,” she said. Her voice broke and her face crumpled and I choked up too, but did not cry. I said thank you. I said, “I already have a good and happy life.”

My mother thinks about me. 

At the end of June, it was time to return to Taipei. This trip was much shorter than the first, but no less fun. For starters, my cousin Karen and I returned to Hong Kong:

Traveling for business, obviously.  
Before our feet started to hurt. 
Do this panorama some justice and click on it. 
My brother got married (again, to the same Cathy), at the W Hotel in Taipei. He cried the whole time and Cathy, was like, “What is wrong with you.” It was very touching. 
Bubbles and my brother’s tears. 
Some Ho’s and then some. 
I spent some quality time with family in Taiwan, and it felt a little different this time because I wasn’t sure when I’d next be back. 
My uncle at the office. He looks at numbers, then reads Buddhist scripture, and is in bed by 9PM. Every. Single. Day. 
My cousin Melody was also home from Boston over the summer, taking a break from breaking hearts. Over Din Tai Fung, we talked about the elusive Mr. Right and the ubiquitous Mr. Wrongs.  
I ate Chinese food as though my life depended on it, unsure of what awaited me in New York. Pasta, it turns out. 
And a lot of the time, marveled at the fact that this guy was in a relationship with a girl who really really likes him. “I don’t know why either,” he says. 

I returned to California in the middle of July, hoping to return to a somewhat normal schedule, but it was crunch time. There was another trip to Vegas with the girls I go most often and have the best time with: 

Elevator selfie. 

A short trip to SF. First stop, two nights at Erica and Carson’s:

TPE – HKG – SF! Taxicab selfies are now a thing. 
I had lunch with Emily from Pearl’s wedding. She lived in SF and was trying to convince all her single girlfriends to move out there. 
“The odds are so much better for women in SF,” she said, “I heard it’s hard to meet someone in New York.” 
I nodded; I had heard the same thing. But a month later Emily would make it very easy for me to meet someone in New York. 
“What about POI? He’s offensive and so is Betty.” 

And the main event: Jaime’s Bachelorette party, which was supposed to be tame but ended up like this:

The bachelorette and a very drunk man who liked very much to “back it up.”  

My cousin Wendy’s baby shower:

Remember earlier in the year she was in Vegas! 
And a quick succession of hangouts before I had to leave town: 
I watched a lot of movies with this girl, equally as obsessed with Benedict Cumberbatch as I was until we realized he was probably gay. But we still really like him. 

With cousin Michelle in Venice, aping an ape. 
At plate by plate with Enny, whose outfit was pretty much the talk of the town. 
Billy’s dad salting seasoning their salmon during a random weekend at their mansion in Upland.  
With Angie and Lynn at a Phoenix International event. 
Getting In n’Out with Grandpa. 
With Auntie Linda, a few days before leaving. 
Pint-sized houseguests from Taipei. 
An impromptu mexican feast at Grace’s.  
Then, on August 17, 2013, I moved to New York. 
Well. Sort of. 
The early days. 
Grace and Charlene were there to help make things better. We went to HomeGoods and bought mirrors and lamps, you know, essential things. They helped me haul three giant boxes filled with Forever 21 crap up five flights, something the UPS guy failed to do. 
Best moving service ever 🙂 Way better than UPS. 
Then in my giant mess of an unfurnished room, we got ready for my first girls’ night out in New York. 
And it was never this messy again. 
Cleaned up and celebrating Charlene’s birthday belatedly, at Robert in Columbus Circle. 
And it was back to California for Jaime and Alvin’s beautiful wedding in San Clemente. I’ve known Jaime since middle school, when we met in science class and giggled together at the teacher’s giant armpit sweat stains. Four months later, she and her husband would fly through a snow storm and battle massive flight delays to visit me in New York. 
With bridesmaid Emy, also an old friend from high school and Jaime, one of the most low-maintenance brides in the history of brides. Emy and I always look like her bodyguards.  
I like to think that some of my photos were better than the wedding photographer’s. 
At the wedding, just as I was sitting down to dinner, Emily texted me. 
“Hey! I want to set you up with someone.” 
“I’m game,” I said, taking a bite of fish. 
A few minutes later POI texted, asking me to dinner sometime the following week. I’d let him know tomorrow, I said. First I had to eat cake and dance. I was at a wedding, after all. 
The next evening, I boarded a red-eye flight from Long Beach to JFK. And just like that, it was back to New York. For longer, for real. 

Kaua’i, Last Look

Aloha from the hokey but spacious interior of our resort, the Kauai Coast Resort at the Beachboy
One of many scenic spots along the Wailua River Valley. 

Wet, dead fern leaves on a hike. My mother was glum because her feet were wet. 

Lots of these guys running around the island, crossing the road, not crossing the road, dead on the road…

Purportedly the best shave ice in Kauai, but we ordered the ice cream instead.  
To the (Kilauea) lighthouse. Or not. The view was much better from here than there, where one can only see ocean. 
My mom and I came back in love with Plumerias of all colors. 
The view along the Waimei Canyon Drive up to the Iliau Nature Loop.  
Clouds began to roll in… 
And we were suddenly in the clouds. A perky iliau despite the gloomy weather on the Iliau Nature Loop.  
Same day, on the drive down from the loop. Two-faced island.  

I don’t know what flower this is, even after a long and detailed explanation with our tour guide.

A hut in the grass. Not sure if anyone lived here but I wasn’t about to venture in and find out.
A pretty tree waving at the pretty sea. 

More plumerias! 
Until next time. Mahalo for your attention.

Letter from Kaua’i

Hey Guh,

It’s 4:30PM here in Kaua’i and I’ve just come from swimming in the ocean, barely two shades darker than when I arrived. Mom on the other hand, due to some crazy tanning skills, is dark as a panther, even though she’s been wearing a long-sleeved linen shirt, long shorts, a hat, and holding my umbrella as a parasol since we got here.

“I’m just dark,” is her response. She hates it, but then looks down at her brown ashy legs and shrugs, “Oh well. What can I do.” 

She’s napping on the florid Hawaiian print couch in our hotel and I’m writing to you on the balcony, which is supposed to have a “garden view” but really just faces the neighboring resort which is undergoing construction. It’s hard work for these guys, but they get the ocean breeze, an awesome view, and they blast some KIIS FM stuff (so my jam) from a fuzzy radio, but they can only hear it when their drills and hammers aren’t going on. 

If I tilt my chair to the left, I can see the ocean, which is right behind our hotel. It’s a cute place, definitely on the older side, but has separate living room and a full kitchen, which mom likes, a heated pool (though I think that’s unnecessary here) and hammocks hanging from the palm trees. Just a few steps away (God I sound like a brochure) is a nice stretch of beach, too rocky for some people but perfect for me and the other folks who swim with their head above water, that is, half-heartedly, because we’re not into snorkeling or scuba-diving, and who wants all that salt in their eyes? 

Traveling with mom is interesting. I’ve taken trips with just the two of us before, mostly destinations that were driving distance; we went to San Diego before I went to Berkeley and then to Napa while I was up there, but I forgot how much of each trip is just… driving and looking. Mom can walk for days, but she also walks very slowly (you know this) and needs good shoes or else she gets this glum look on her face, as though nothing in the world could make it right. 

The first hike I proposed was just after a rain and the path was too soggy for her. She’d brought these shoes with holes on the bottom, which I told her were perfect for Hawaii and that she shouldn’t wear socks with them but she blamed me, saying that I had told her it wasn’t going to rain much. I told her it was hard to predict the weather, especially in Hawaii. She thought about this and decided to be unreasonable anyway. 

“You said it wouldn’t rain,” she said.  

She was kind of a brat that day, but I got over it.  

So basically we’re in scuba, snorkel, kayak, zip-lining and hiking capital of the USA but we didn’t do any of that, mostly because well, I’m not really into any of that either, but I’m kind of afraid of mom getting really tired or hurting herself. 

This morning we went for a walk along the beach. I told mom to be careful because some of the rocks were slippery. I wanted to walk down near the water and she said she would too but she wouldn’t take off her shoes. I saw some interesting barnacles on a rock closer to the water and wanted her to take a look, thinking, I don’t know what, that maybe mom knew a ton about barnacles – God, barnacles! Of all things to risk your mother’s life for! – and she started towards me so I turned back towards the barnacles and suddenly I heard her cry out. I turned and there she was lying awkwardly between two jagged black rocks and I thought for a millisecond that I’d made her fall to her death because I wanted her to look at some goddamned barnacles.

Her face was twisted up in a grimace and I was frozen there on the beach, not even moved by the waves hitting me in the back of the knees, my mind completely blank when she started laughing. I let out the hugest sigh of relief and rushed over. She nodded towards my camera and said, over the water which seemed to be moving again, “Did you get a picture of that?”

I didn’t (but I definitely thought about it when she started laughing) and asked if she felt anything amiss, bone-wise. She said, “Nope, thank God I have a fat ass.”

So mom is funny (though you knew that too). Funny in that she intends to be funny and also unintentionally. On the plane, she proved to be the most interesting seat mate I’ve had in a while – and I’ve sorted started this thing, writing about these seat mates because I’ve been traveling so much and have sat next to the some interesting people: e.g. Orthodox Jews who own their own printing company (they wanted to hire me onto their sales team), a girl named Leslie who was thinking about following her boyfriend out to California, and most recently, before Hawaii, a middle-aged authoress and HER elderly mother, both of whom were my worst nightmare. I still need to writer an essay about her, but let’s just say she wrote what seems like a terrible book and was telling me how successful she was until Border’s went out of business… I was like, “How come your book wasn’t anywhere else?” and she gave me this really irritated look like I didn’t understand anything about publishing and said, “Well, it’s on Amazon in digital format for $1.99.”

When the sandwich cart came she pulled out her credit card and asked her eighty-year old mother what she wanted and when the old woman told her, she said, “Well, Ma, get out your credit card because you have to pay for it.” I was incredulous, but then remembered that her book was selling for $1.99 and I probably didn’t need to ask her how the sales were if she couldn’t afford to buy her mother a sandwich. Oh man. Knock on wood so that my own writing career will blossom and blossom for decades.

Anyway, Mom though – she couldn’t sleep on the flight over and ended up just counting fat people on the plane, chuckling a bit to herself whenever a fat guy or woman got up and walked around or asked for another beer and soda.

“Look, look, this fatty is getting up to exercise.”


“Look, he’s getting another beer. See, Betty, every fatty is fat for a reason.”

I laughed out loud so many times during the flight people trying to sleep around me were probably getting irritated. And it was so funny, to see how childlike mom could be: when the beverage cart came around she asked first for a glass a milk. Milk! And then for a glass of orange juice, two things she never drinks when she’s at home but 40,000 feet in the air it’s totally okay. 

“Milk, please.” “Orange juice, please.” It was bizarre.

And the fruit. Dude, woman eats two to three whole papayas a day, plus bananas and lychees. She was a bit miffed at the entire island of Kaua’i because pineapples aren’t as cheap as she thought. I think she imagined these bounties of fruit falling out of the sky, or just cartloads of fruit outside the hotel for 50 cents a pound, but yeah, the local stuff here is kind of expensive, but mom was like, “Okay, I’ll shell out for papaya.”

But with pineapple she was more reluctant because dad’s not around to cut it into bite-sized triangles.

I get the feeling that she’s just not paying attention. I’ve heard her take a few calls from prospective students and I realize how hard mom and xiao jiu work to keep the Chinese school going, and how much of a headache it all must be, but because she believes in it, she keeps at it. Anyway, these calls tell me that mom is actually really on top of her shit in regards to the things that matter to her, and not that coming to Kaua’i with me doesn’t matter, but she doesn’t have to do anything in terms of planning, because she assumes I’ll be the tour guide and arrange everything, including drive her ass around to all these points which she sometimes doesn’t even get out of the car for, and…well, I do it because it’s in my nature, and it’s fine.

The most hilarious thing: is she is dyslexic for sure, and I think I might have inherited some of that. I get all mixed up about Chinese phrases and it’s the same for her, but in English. You know how she used to always say “May Robinsons” and “California Chicken Pizza” for CPK? Well, there’s a dish here called poke, which is basically sashimi marinated in sea salt, soy sauce, sesame oil and seaweed. Mom really likes it so I ordered it a couple times at various fish markets. She always goes, “Get the Polka Dot?” with a question mark because she knows she’s saying it wrong but can’t be bothered to knock off a few extra letters. I always want to tear my hair out. “Mom, it’s POKE!” pronounced “poh-kay”, I’ll say, and she just laughs, closes her eyes, shakes her head in that way.

“Oh, what are you going to do about me?”

Nothing, really, but buy the poke. But it’s been a good time. We’re going to get some Barbecue now for our last meal in Kaua’i and I gotta run out and pick it up.

Anyway, that’s my little update: telling you things you already know about mom.



Kaua’i: Fish and Ice Cream

For starters, there were a lot of fat people on our flight to Kaua’i. I wrinkled my nose at them while my mother chuckled to herself every time a 胖子 (“fatso” in Chinese) got up to get himself another soda.

“Everyone’s fat for a reason, Betty,” mom said, and I nodded, glad that the two of us fit comfortably in our economy seats. We had brought fruit, beef jerky, and granola bars to munch on the plane and watched smugly in our relatively slender frames as the others stuffed their faces with day-old overpriced airline sandwiches. 
Then we arrived in Kaua’i and forgot about the fatties on the plane. I drove my mother to a farmer’s market where she made a beeline for papayas, buying six. She would devour two that night. 
“Papaya doesn’t make you fat,” she would say as I stared, “It’s good for digestion.” 
Holding my mother’s six papayas, I bought a coconut and ask the nice but extremely wrinkled man to hack it in half and scoop out the flesh. I ate half a coconut standing in the parking lot in front of Kmart, refusing to acknowledge that it was akin to eating half a stick of butter. 
“It’s good for my skin. And antibacterial,” I thought. 
Then we raided the Kmart. The wrinkled man still fresh in my mind, I bought a man’s visor emblazoned with “Kaua’i” just in case I lost my mind and forgot where I was, and a tube of Ocean Potion sunblock which smelled like an orange creamsicle.  
My mother said, “Let’s get eggs, milk and cereal for breakfast. We can each eat two or three eggs a day. And if we have leftovers, we can boil them and take them on the flight home.” 
I nodded in agreement, thinking that we’d be hiking and/or kayaking so much that a big carb and protein and…everything-else-packed breakfast made sense. 
Breakfast of tourist champions. 
But conclude what you will from the following conversation: 
Me: Mom, what activities do you want to do? We can kayak the Wailua River, hike down Waimea Canyon, or go swimming at the beach right behind our resort

Mom: No… I’d rather not. 
We ended up walking, very slowly, a lot. Which normally isn’t enough exercise for me to say, “I’m gonna eat whatever the hell I want,” but when you’re in Kaua’i with your mother who thinks that eating two whole (sometimes three) papayas a day is the very thing one should do when vacationing in tropical fruit heaven, you follow your mother’s lead. Except with ice cream. Despite my sweet tooth being sharper than hers and relishing the occasional heaping plate of red meat, I have a similar palate to my mother’s; we like vegetables and fish. Lots of fish. And we like a good deal. 
Turns out, mom and I flew with the fatties to the right island. Below are the greatest culinary hits from our trip and the dishes behind our combined eight pound (four each) weight gain. 
Kapaa, HI 96746

This place was just down the street from our hotel and the most expensive fish market we visited, but huge portions and excellent seared ahi poke. Below are the seared ahi poke salad and mahi mahi plate lunch (sans rice).
5-5075 Kuhio Hwy. Ste. A
Hanalei, HI 96714
We came here on a recommendation while visiting the north shore and the famed Hanalei Bay. It’s a popular spot with tourists and locals alike and considered a “romantic treat” for people celebrating anniversaries, honeymoons, and engagements. There was a line outside the restaurant before it opened at 6PM, which gave the hostess a power trip. I let her take the trip because she was a stunning middle aged woman with arms like Linda Hamilton. I’m pretty sure she taught yoga during the day and never eats what’s pictured below. That said, the restaurant’s ambience and quality of food doesn’t equal their prices (our most expensive meal in Kaua’i) and afterward we decided to stick with fish markets. I do recommend their Hanalei Taro Fritters (don’t order the rest of the appetizers), Vegan Chocolate Silk Pie, and Deep Fried Macadamia Coconut Crusted Ice Cream (photo later). 
5482 Koloa Rd.
Koloa, HI 96756 
One of my favorite stops, in Old Koloa Town. It was sweltering that day and fish markets don’t exactly have seating, but we found a shady tree nearby and chowed down on their Hawaiian Plate with Lau Lau (pork wrapped in Taro leaves, which was very reminiscent of a similar Chinese dish) and fish cooked two ways (ahi and mahi mahi). Both were great and my mother, not a big meat eater, enjoyed the Lau Lau, which was like baby back ribs except without the ribs and the barbecue sauce… yeah. 

3343 Kuhio Hwy. Ste. 10
Lihue, HI, 96766

This place is number one. We bought fresh miso marinated butterfish to cook back at the hotel on our first night, and then came back for the grill, which is only open from 10-2PM each day.
“People get mad when they miss the grill,” said the young man behind the counter when we first went, and I immediately made a note to come back. The fish below was hands down the best grilled fish we had in Kaua’i – left is blackened ahi with a fragrant butter sauce and macadamia crusted cream dill sauce mahi mahi. Not pictured is the crab and ahi poke, which my mother ate like salsa, though without chips. She called it “polka dot” and insisted I buy the “polka dot” at all the subsequent fish markets.

“Mom. It’s POKE. Poke-ay.”

“Ah yes, polka dot is the dog.”

“….” (she was thinking of dalmatians).

We brought these to picnic near the beach and it was one of my most memorable meals. My mother complained a bit about the wind, then ate the fish and stopped complaining about anything.

4-1586 Kuhio Hwy
KapaaHI 96746

Our last dinner in Kaua’i, which we paired with a little bottle of wine I’d gotten from the plane. We shared a sampler which offered enough meat for three people, though if I ever go back I’d get the ribs, which were everything good ribs should be. Funny story: I called in my order and when I arrived, the girl said, “You’re the phone order?” 

“Yeah,” I said. 

“Here you go,” she pushed the box towards me and I said, “Wait, this is John’s.” 

Lastly, it wouldn’t be a proper food post without the literal cream of the crop:
ICE CREAM (clockwise from top left):
POSTCARDS CAFE – deep fried macadamia ice cream in coconut shell
ONO ONO SHAVE ICE – not shaved ice, (if rainbow sugar water is your thing, then definitely get it here) but their rather unnaturally hued taro and coconut ice creams.
PAPALANI GELATO – Pineapple (my mother) and chocolate.
LAPPERT’S ICE CREAM AND COFFEE – Kona coffee, my mother’s Achille’s heel and robber of sleep. She ate it at 7PM one evening and was doomed to toss and turn for the rest of the night.

And I had to give this guy his own headshot, because I miss him: Lappert’s Coconut Macadamia Nut Fudge. I went back twice and considered a third but my pants were feeling suspiciously tight and I didn’t want my mother to laugh at me on the plane too.

The End. 

First Look: Kaua’i

It’s hard to take a bad photo of Kaua’i. Mother Nature’s done all the hard work so all you have to do is point and shoot. These were taken with the iPhone, which is not to say I didn’t do the touristy thing and lug around the Canon G12, but first, the easy-to-edit phone photos. 
It’s Thursday, our last full day in Kaua’i and my mother and I have breakfasted on eggs, fresh papaya, coconut and Kellog’s Smart Start, which we bought at the Kmart adjacent to the farmer’s market we visited upon arriving. It’s rained a little every day, but thankfully mostly during times we were in the car, driving from coast to coast. I hate driving, but Kauai makes it easy (and also a bit dangerous, because I’m easily distracted) with view like this: 
And this: 
My mother is a brave passenger, as I often swerve to the opposite side of the road trying to capture the views I’m seeing, but I pulled over for this one of Wimea Canyon. It’s almost comical to try and fit it on a single screen but you can click the photo to enter into fullscreen mode. 
While we’re at it, here’s another panorama of McBryde Gardens which was exciting for me (my mother said simply, “Where are all the orchids? I thought there’d be orchids”) because parts of “Jurassic Park,” one of my favorite movies of all time, were filmed here. In this garden there is a restroom which was donated by Michael Crichton. I did not photograph the restroom, but it looks a lot like this one in the movie.  
You know which scene I’m thinking about. 

A shot from the bus enroute to the garden. According to Bob the driver, this is where the sea turtles come to lay their eggs.

The real Fantasy Island. 
Bob the driver. His voice was flat like this __________. But he was very nice. 
Just one of many pretty faces in the garden and around the island. It’s not called “The Garden Island” for nothing.

No more driving today. My mom and I are going to take the day strolling around our hotel, the Kauai Island Resort at the Beachboy, an older establishment with condo-style amenities, right on a beach that can get rather violent in the evening. But for now the water is calm and the sun, not so harsh.

Have a great weekend.