Today proved a fruitful day.  (It’s funny how much stuff you can actually see and places you can go when you’re like “I only have 30 minutes til I need to be somewhere!”  You cram in everything and end up being particularly efficient.)

In the morning we headed over to our favorite spot on the West side of the island.


Through Pearl City, where the Two Towers are… (that’s not really what they’re called; just when we first moved to Hawaii The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers had just come to theatres and Hub and I always joked about Saruman standing atop one of them…okay, we’re total geeks)…

As the land turns to dry desert with cacti and the earth stains red… [yes, this is still Hawaii: the only state containing 11 of the 13 different climate zones in the world!]

As the craggy foliage-covered mountains splay to the east and the west…

Past where they’re apparently building a Disney resort scheduled to open in 2011

Konishiki’s house – he’s a local from this area originally.

Past Maili, where former yokozuna [sumo wrestling champion] Konishiki has his pad (and we’ve seen him driving his little golf cart around on occasion)….

Through Waianae, the most poverty-stricken area of the island, where crystal meth abuse and vandalism run rampant…

The army appears to be Up To Something.

Through designated Hawaiian Home Land [land leased to people who have a minimum of 50% native Hawaiian blood from the government] and land seized by the US Army for use for training exercises…[you can probably guess how the native Hawaiians feel about that]…

Past Beach People enclaves [homeless who have elected to live on the beach in tents and hollowed-out cars draped with tarps]….


On top of the mountain to the east is the Coast Guard Satellite Tracking Facility that we just call the Big-A** Golf Ball.

Secluded, rocky, dangerous waves, whales on the horizon, and fabulous, fabulous shells.  There are a lot of drupes, tiny nerites, as well as abundant varieties of cone shells – my favorite is the Conus ebraeus with its graphic black-and-white pattern.  Cowries that have bleached with time and calcium deposits – it’s almost impossible to find a whole, shiny cowrie out here due to the strength of the waves.  And sea urchin skeletons and spines, pulverized.  Since I don’t scuba-dive, I can’t collect specimen shells; just do my best at snorkeling depths.  My dream is to find a whole Cypraea (Cribrarula) gaskoini someday

Isn’t it beautiful? (img from marinelifephotography.com)


You can just hear the waves crashing, no?

So we played on the beach and I picked up lots of broken shells since the waves were too rough to dare the waters, and I ended up with a sunburn on my ankles and in an oval on my forearm where apparently I missed putting on my SPF.

Me, crackberrying on the beach.  This is my normal Beach Attire.

Then we headed back to Waikiki, and I stopped in Island Sweetie for a look-see.

It’s a little hole-in-the-wall, but sometimes I can find some fun, trendy things in there.  I hemmed and hawed over a cropped black cardigan with a skull-pattern, but the $59 pricetag finally decided things for me.  I found tons of studded MMS Design bags (at least I’m pretty sure that’s what the label said, though I’m unfamiliar with the brand), flowing paisley and vintage-flower-print sundresses, a necklace with a cluster of gems like gumdrops, Swarovski-encrusted pens and business card holders, and the owner cutting up printed tees and re-tying the strips he’d just cut, pure 80’s style.

Then to Ward Centre and Warehouse, and while Hub was getting a hair cut (I write it like that because his hairstyle is pretty much unchanged from before going into the salon, hence, my theory is that he only a got a. hair. cut), I took Lil Tot around to some stores.

misfortuneYes, the door says “Misfortune.”  It’s really hard to see.

Misfortune always surprises me in that though they’re small and have comparatively little on the selling floor, I always find something I want.

At many stores in Hawaii you will find pages from Japanese magazines on display – showing the feature or write-up of their store to their Japanese customers.  Many Japanese women collect magazine features on shops in Hawaii and visit – specifically to shop at said stores.  What I’ve always found interesting is that rarely do U.S.-based magazines mention these stores or “hot” items they’re selling. 😉


This tee with all sorts of extra bits added onto it was especially nice; I’d probably have bought it if it was in a darker color and long-sleeved.  Maybe I’ll make one.


I liked the studded bags on the wall, too.

Linea proved slightly interesting but definitely more urban- and club-wear than I could usually pull off.


Second Skin didn’t have much in the way of notable finds, though the graphic print tank in the window I liked (though I could have sworn I’ve seen it in a past issue of Lucky…)

After a dinner of Mizithra Cheese and Browned Butter spaghetti and watermelon-sorbet-honeydew-ice-cream-oreo-cookie-crust ice cream cake (yum!) at the Old Spaghetti Factory, we went back to Waikiki and I hit up Pineapple County, where I lingered a whole 25 minutes until Hub hustled me out of there, complaining he had to go to the bathroom.

Ah, Pineapple County.  So many lovely things, affordable prices (think Zara on sale, not quite as cheap as Forever21)…

 pcnecklacepcbearsI’m telling ya, adding a bear dangling off your bag is so IN! (Well…maybe in Japan.;-)

Beautiful dress with a see-through lace skirt.

Totally DIY-able with a grinder-attachment on your handheld drill.
pctankLove this: a tank that has a foldover ruffle at the bustline with a lacy bra-top inset as straps.
pcteeI tried snapping more photos but my camera battery died halfway through.

I ended up with a similar skull-print cardi to the one I saw at Island Sweetie (except a heck of a lot cheaper at $10.99, and one size too small but I can easily fix that once I get to a sewing machine), with tiny little skulls like polka dots.  Refined.  And a white foldover skull-studded bag, and a sculptural hammered silver ring.  I also would have gotten a “Pineapple County” printed tee, had I not been hustled out of there.  I’ll def. make do with a free tote bag instead!

Tomorrow: the in-laws arrive, we visit the Hawaii Children’s Museum and further scar Lil Tot for life with the 8-ft tall doll with the exploding organs, and meet up with even more in-laws for lunch at Mariposa.  Whew!

I hear New York is practically snowed in – for those of you there, how is it right now?

I’m a little worried my flight will be canceled.


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