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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Maui upcountry

Yesterday was another beautiful day in paradise. Why not take a road trip??  We loaded the car, and set out for an adventure in  the upcountry of Maui.  High in the hills where the thick grass is lush, and the clouds are hanging just to the edge of the mountain.  The temperature is cooler, but not enough for a jacket, and life looks simpler up there.
Mark is the happiest of campers.  Headphones on, his book, his iPhone, and it's command central. He doesn't have to listen to any of us, and runs his GPS and occasionally will shout out a direction for Gary to go.  It makes me laugh to see him in his "nest" but he loves it, so who am I to judge?

As we travel through small towns and see a life that has a slower pace, we are reminded why we love this island so much.  It seems we get so busy being busy that we fail to stop and smell the coffee, or ride the wave.  This place is such a treat, and a good reminder that we need to stop, and breathe, and smell, and let the day unfold before us.
Our first stop was at one of our favorite eating establishments.  Out in the middle of nowhere, and around the corner from can't believe I'm here, is a wonderful restaurant.  Pronounced Hall-E-My-Lay-A.  We were the first to arrive, and weren't disappointed by what we found.  Our memories hadn't disappointed us.  Fresh mahi mahi sandwiches, and mango margarita for me.  The margarita was so fresh and delicious, and the fish was cooked perfectly.
Until we meet again, this photo will just have to be my reminder of a fabulous lunch with good friends.

Our next stop was the Alii' lavender farm.  It sits high on a hill and overlooks the ocean below.  A little foggy today, so the views weren't as crisp as the last time we visited, but Mr. Mark got his lavender tea and scone, and the ladies loved walking the gardens to see what is blooming.  Still a little early for much of it to be in full bloom, but there were little wonders here and there.  I do love how delicate the orchids are and how they grow virtually wild.  And I'm so fond of the protea.  So much so that I had to send a bouquet to Lucy for her birthday.  They are an amazing flower, and we saw many bouquets that were different ages, and it's wonderful how long they last and how their color holds up.

This last protea is my favorite, mostly because the sign said, "no walking" "do not enter" "private property"... The rest of the group came to an abrupt halt, but of course, I creeped on until I got this perfectly shaped protea, in sunny yellow.  I think the signs were suggestions, what do you think?

We moved our crazy group down the road and visited the Maui winery.  We do enjoy the Maui blanc made from pineapple grown on the island.  It will be nice with some fresh fish.  We met an interesting woman who was serving us, and she told us of all the strides the island is making in becoming more sustainable.  They now grow their own pineapple instead of using frozen concentrate, and Maui has their own line of cattle.  No drugs, no hormones, no antibiotics, and for the cows, their last 30 days are spent enjoying the sweet pineapple just for them.  I like to think their final 30 days are happy ones, as who doesn't like pineapple?  Now we want to find some local beef and try it out.

Our final stop was the Surfing Goat.  It's a goat farm where they make many goat products.  Soaps, cheese, and lotions.  We admired the baby goats, some who were only one day old.  They had just had their horns removed, and ears tattooed.  Such sweet little creatures, and loved being petted.  Their heads looked sore, but the owner assured me removing the horns didn't bother them, but they were less than thrilled with the ear tattoo.  We enjoyed a sampler of six different goat cheeses with crackers and took two home for later use.

This was our lovely drive down from the goat farm. I wish there had been a few white puffy clouds in the sky, but it's still a beautiful drive.  We saw many egrets, grouse, a pheasant, several mongoose, and even a chicken crossed the road.

We made it home in time to see a whale so close to the house.  With screams and gathering of cameras we bolted outside, only to find a boat had seen what we saw.  The boat in it's eagerness to see "our whale" motored over and we were unable to find him again, until he surfaced quite a ways away.  Darn tourists. :-)
The house is quiet this morning.  Half of it still sleeping, Mark and I being early risers haven enjoyed the Kona coffee, and listening to the waves.  Another day in paradise to feed our souls.  I leave you with this:

No worries.


Baby G's Grandparents said...

I want to go to your happy place! That mango margarita was beautiful--I can almost taste it!

I enjoyed looking at all the photos and reading about your adventures--for an island there sure is a diversity of terrain, activities, food and libations.

Have a fantastic day--can't wait for tomorrow's entry!

Love, Tracy

MommyG said...

It looks like you are having an amazing trip! Take in the warm sunshine...its supposed to snow here over the next few days!! ahhh...i want to trade places!

I love being able to follow along your journey and adventures with your daily posts and photos, keep 'em coming!

Miss you!

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