Aloha, friends …..

We’re back and ready to rock ‘n roll!  The Big Island was awesome and my family and I were able to spend a couple of days “decompressing” at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel.  It is truly one of my favorite places to stay .. so peaceful and serene.  I like to spend a lot of time by the old fishponds located nearby … the mana is so strong there and always so comforting to me.  I want to send a huge MAHALO! out to Danny & Anna Akaka for inviting us again this year … it was another awesome Talk Story event!  I also want to thank Francis & Susie Ruddle, Pi’i, John & Bonnie Palos, and all the gang who help the Akakas and the Mauna Lani put this event on every time.  And finally, I want to thank Takashi Yamakawa, president of Mauna Lani Resorts, along with hotel GM Robert Grant, Ranie, and the rest of the amazing hotel staff who always make us feel so welcome!

On Sunday morning, Francis took us out on his boat to go and pick sea salt in an area south of Waikoloa.  It was a gorgeous morning and the ocean was pretty calm.  After anchoring, we jumped on to the lava and began combing the shoreline looking for pockets of sea salt.  Unfortunately, though, it had rained the night before so all the salt had dissolved and there was only standing water everywhere.  We decided to pick opihi instead and I was amazed at how plentiful and accessible they were – and the surf was calm enough so I was able to go close to the water and get some really nice sized ones.  We only picked enough for our needs and I was even able to bring a small bag back to O’ahu with me.  Afterward, we cruised the shoreline where Francis pointed out the many historical sites and secret spots to find limu kohu, Kona crab, kole, and moi.  Afterward, we spent most of the afternoon at the “Limu Lounge” back at the boathouse enjoying a few “beverages” and grinding fresh opihi and some ono fried chicken and cinnamon pastry which Bonnie brought down.  It was a great day and I am so grateful to the Ruddles, their crew, John, Bonnie, and Raymond for including me ….

And so now we’re back and ready to continue preparations for our upcoming Japan tour …. here we go again!

Have a great week, everybody …. Aloha, “D”

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