My coffee companion on the patio one early morning in Maui, a very brave (read pushy) red-crested cardinal. As you can see, I feared for my Starbucks!
This species of bird is actually a songbird (Paroaria coronata), part of the family of tanagers and is native to parts of South America and now found in Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Despite the name, it’s not really related to true cardinals found in North America. But he’s very cute, isn’t he?
My DDIL took the photo and my info is from Wikipedia.
The Banyan tree in Lahaina, a town on the west side of Maui. The tree sits in what is commonly called Banyan Tree Park, next to the old courthouse building at the corner of Front and Canal Streets. It’s one of the largest banyans in the U.S., all one tree actually. As it grows, it puts down more roots from above that grow into more tree trunks and they all remain connected.
The tree was planted by Sheriff William Owen Smith in 1873 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first American Protestant mission in Lahaina, a gift from missionaries in India. The banyan is native to India, one of 60 types of fig trees to grow in the Hawaiian Islands.
It’s quite a sight to behold. And nearly impossible to get a picture of the entire tree because it covers such a large area and is almost 60 feet tall now… The photos are my own, taken a few years ago when we were in Maui with hubby’s brother and sister-in-law.
Aloha is a Hawaiian word that can have many meanings, including friendliness, kindness and affection. It’s more common meaning in the English language is a greeting, either hello or goodbye.
I’m using it that way today because I’m excited to tell you (not show you just yet!) about one of the more common side effects of having breast cancer and chemotherapy. Back in November my hair started to fall out — all of my hair, everywhere on my body, except my eyebrows and eyelashes. They have thinned somewhat and I think a lot of my bottom lashes have come out, but I’ve always been a girl who likes make up so brows and lashes are relatively easy to camouflage. The hair on my head, not so much!
One of the benefits of chemo, aside from the big one of ridding me of any cancer cells, has been not having to shave or wax legs, underarms, bikini area. The hair was just gone, sort of like it rubbed off with any friction from clothing.
But since I had my last chemo treatment nearly a month ago now, I thought the stubble on my head was growing out a little. I couldn’t be sure cause it’s only about a quarter-inch long, but it feels a little different. Last night as I was smoothing on lotion — it’s still winter where I live — I could feel stubble on my legs, for the first time in months! I haven’t checked absolutely everywhere, but I think my hair is finally starting to grow back. So aloha!
which runs between the islands of Maui, Molokai and Lanai in Hawaii. Sorry my pictures are not very good, but believe me when I tell you the whale watching adventure was thrilling. We must have seen more than 20 humpback whales in the Au’au Channel south of Lahaina. We had barely pulled out of the harbor and into deeper water when a whale surfaced literally right next to our boat. We were all so startled that I don’t think anyone got a picture!
The boat ride was a bit rocky, so trying to use my Samsung phone to shoot pictures in the bright glaring sun while trying to hang onto the side and not drop my phone in the water didn’t make for the easiest time.
But seeing the whales and learning about them from biologist Dan was fascinating. Bet you didn’t know:
Humpback whales swim about 3 to 8 miles an hour but can go 20 miles an hour for a short distance
The main natural predator of the humpback whale is the orca
Humpback whales can go five hours without breathing and slow their heart rate to one beat every seven minutes.
Humpbacks are not monogamous. If you see two adults and a baby together, the group will consist of mother and baby plus a male escort whale. He’s not there for protection, he’s there to breed with the female if she’ll allow it.
A competition group consists of a female whale and several males jockeying for position to mate with her. They jostle and fight with each other and try to impress her (typical males!)
Humpbacks live and feed much of the year in the Pacific Northwest and come to Maui to breed, give birth and, of course, for the Mai Tais!