Saturday, March 12, 2011

Whales and Shrimp Tales

Friday was a recovery day.  One of the only true days when we feel every month of our "40-something" is an all-nighter, especially if partying was not involved.  Hats off to our friends who work night shifts, because it takes us two days to recover properly from a night with no sleep.  Of course, we can't whine too much, since a beach chair at the pool certainly helps things along.

Rick and the boys were curious about the effects of the storm, so headed over this afternoon to the Mauna Lani resort, our closest beachside development for lunch.  They strolled down to the shore to survey the damages, and of course the boys headed out onto the lava rocks, as boys do.  It didnt take long to see the tsunami effects.... it was still happening! There is really not a huge tide in Hawaii, maybe only a foot or so in elevation, translating to 5 or10 feet on the beach of movement.  But the boys, climbing out and standing on the rocks, where soon cut off from shore.  The waves were atypical, more a level of water that rose for a few minutes like a tide, then retreated.  They watched as the beach path they had followed disappeared, but luckily reappeared after a few minutes later.  Not the usual "wave in, wave out" pattern at all.  The reminents of the tsumani. 

They did see a whale while at the beach, only 50-75 feet or so from shore, spouting and then presenting its tail with a splash.  Makes you wonder how the creatures respond to such a change in their environment. In New Zealand, earthquakes are often preceded by a spontaneous beaching of whale and dolphin species.... like their sonar can sense a subsurface tension, and perhaps interferes with their depth perception.  Before the big earthquake in February, several hundred dolphins and small whales swam onto the beaches just 50 miles south of the quake epicenter, to die on the shores only a few days before the earthquake hit.  The mammals in the sea are victims of the event as well.

We had an update of the damage on our side of the Big Island.  Ali'i Roadin Kona was flooded, including the host hotel of the Hawaii state Brewers convention - had to be moved to a different location for the weekend.  Bubba Gump's managed to clean up and recover much of their missing furnature, and though their electronics were fried and glass smashed, the kitchen was relatively untouch... they were able to open a couple days later so will survive to serve another day. Around the pool, everyone swapped stories of the night in the car, or at the Weimea theater where they opened with a live news feed, or (honestly) in their seaside house or condo hiding from the police and the evacuation orders....risking their lives and the lives of those who may  have had to rescue them had there been a larger problem.   Some people don't get it, or perhaps are niave and innocent (dense) enough to not understand what the potential of the situation could be. Stupid is as Stupid does.  Truly, life is back to normal in most of Hawaii.

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