Mark Atwood (fallenpegasus) wrote,
Mark Atwood

Memorial Day Weekend. Parties, Flirting, Hiking, Grilling Meat, learning Pidgen, and more Social The

Last Saturday, Tigris and I went to Buddy's Birthday Party. He is a local personality and friend of hers. I think I recall that I almost met him the last time I was here, but that it didn't work out. The party was fun, especially after people started setting fire to grapes in the microwave oven. The house was big and lovely. It surrounded an open courtyard of a zen garden, such that the house's inner courtyard walls could be rolled open, a common design for nice houses here. The was a large collection of tuned bells and gongs and xylophones, all of various asian styles, that the guests had much fun playing with.

I met a lovely japanese lady named Momo, I should find out what her "proper" given name is. She and I chatted a fair amount, and set up to go hiking the next day.

The next morning, she picked me up from my cafe in her little VW bug, and we drove east, to and past Hawaii Kai, along the Kalanianaole Hwy.. I had done that same drive last time, but that time it was pitch black and kind of scary, being a poorly marked windy road next to the crashing surf. This time was very different, the day was blazingly bright, and the views of the ocean, of the mountains, and of the rich neighborhoods of Hawaii Kai were astounding. We stopped at Kapu' Head, and walked over to Pele's Chair. That was a fun scramble. I climbed up to the base of the chair, about a 10.3. If I had brought my shoes, I probably could have climbed to the top of the formation (if I had dared do it without a rope).

Then we hiked up the Makapu'u Lighthouse Trail. The main trail is a gentle smooth paved path. Which we didn't use much of. Instead we would often go off the main trail, and hike the actual ridgeline. Much more interesting, much more challenging. A couple of times I found myself scrambling and bouldering, instead of just hiking. This may have been unwise, since there were several places where a slipped hand or foot would have sent me bouncing down a steep slope of hundreds of feet of rough volcanic stones, and I would have woken up in an ICU, if ever. But still, it was exciting and I felt very alive.

We reached the pillboxes at the top of the ridge, then hiked down to the top of the "official trail", and then headed back.

Looking down over the edge, I could see some tide pools and a few blowholes. We took a detour, and scrambled down the 45 degree plus face. Standing over the blowholes was amazing, many hundreds of cubic feet of air pushed and pulled though holes in the rock by the surf. And the tidepools were full of brightly colored fish and other sealife. I finally got to see for real what big store aquariums are trying to fake. Then climb and scramble back up the face to the trail. Wow, if I do that every day, I would have the build of the local boys.

Then we hiked back down to the car, then drove west back to Honolulu, stopping for some raman, where I got complemented for my chopstick skills.

That evening, Tigris and I dressed up and dressed down, and headed out to a party being hosted by her friend Amber Ricci. Again, a bunch of interesting people, swimming in the pool, potluck food, and social games. The evening ended on a slightly sour note, in that someone accidently took Tigris's bag with her when they left early, taking her car keys, wallet, house keys, and street-safe clothing. Many messages were left with the early leavers, and then someone gave us a ride back home. From there, we broke into Tigris's house</font>, and then went to sleep, hoping that her stuff would turn up the next day.

The next Monday, Memorial Day, after working in the morning at "my" cafe (disturbed only a little by the sounds of the overflying military jets playing their part in the day's celebration), I walked down to Waikiki, and had lunch with Momo at Lulu's Restaurant. It was interesting to see how the city is knitting together in my head, from the time I've been here this trip, and memories of the last trip.

Tigris's stuff did turn up, and she was able to hitch a ride with her friend Mark Wood back to Amber's to get her car.

That evening, her neighbors invited us out to join their communal grill. The affordable neighborhoods here smell like a meat rosteria every evening, as people come out, and communially grill and socialize. I could follow snippets of the conversation around me, depending on how much Hawaiian and how much Pidgen that people were speaking.

Then later that evening, a bunch of people came over for a "Lafayette Morehouse 'Mark Group'" evening. This is something that I did last time, and enjoyed, even though it's a bit out of my standard comfort zone. Basically it's a set of communication exercise "games", teaching and exercising interpersonal communication skills. Most of the people there remembered me from last time, and some of the questions and interactions were about that, and about the time between, which was a bit draining. And then critique of my "interested question" engagement ability was pointed, but also useful. They are right, it's a skill I need to develop, to communicate and learn by asking interested questions, instead of just sitting back and silently listening.

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