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Day Nine: Hawaiʻi

Posted on Thursday, September 18th, 2008

Dave!It's my last day on The Big Island.

I wanted to spend it sitting on the beach and playing in the ocean.

But that seemed like kind of a waste given all the stuff to do here on Hawaiʻi that I haven't yet done. Shouldn't I be seeing and doing as much as possible while I still can? It seemed a dilemma best pondered while sitting on the beach and playing in the ocean.

But eventually I decided to tear myself away from this beautiful sight...

Beautiful Hapuna Beach Morning

...and head south into dreary and rainy Kailua-Kona for lunch. While there I decided to wander down to where the beautiful Hard Rock Cafe Kona used to be so I could be depressed that one of my favorite cafes has closed. Somebody should buy the building and turn it into a Hard Rock Cafe...

Former Hard Rock Building

From there I decided to head to the first of two destinations I had in mind for today, The Painted Church (which is actually St. Benedict's Catholic Church). This beautiful little church sits on a hill overlooking the ocean and is famous because of the nifty paintings that cover every available surface inside...

The Painted Church Hawaii

Painted Church Interior

My favorite feature is the guardian cat that sits outside and inspects everybody who enters the church...

Painted Church Kitty

There are some terrific statues on the church grounds including a reproduction of Michelangelo’s La Pieta, but I was really intrigued by a nice rendition of The Virgin Mary. She had been lovingly adorned with over a hundred necklaces which did nothing to detract from how beautiful she is...

Painted Church Virgin Mary

After wandering around the church and its grounds for a while, I finally proceeded onward to my ultimate destination, Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park. This used to be a place of refuge where Hawaiians who broke one of the ancient laws against their gods could escape from a death sentence. They'd show up, be absolved of their sin by a priest, and then go on their merry way... free to keep on living. This is also a place where Hawaiian chiefs were laid to rest.

I just liked it because there are cool structures and nifty statues all over the place...

Puuhonua Park

Beachfront Guardians

But the best thing about Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park is that there's a beach where sea turtles come to have a rest. The ancient Hawaiians revered turtles, and petroglyphs here show "honu" turtles everywhere. I just think they're wonderful creatures. Last Sunday when I was in Maui, I snorkeled with a beautiful turtle for almost a half-hour before he finally decided to take a nap on the ocean floor. They're such trusting and inoffensive creatures that it breaks my heart to know that they're endangered now...

Sea Turtle

Sea Turtle

I wish I had another week here.

But before I go, I thought I'd mention that the exclusive design I made for Avitable's Halloween Party fund-raising event will disappear forever in a few short weeks. It's so awesome, that I wore it while frolicking on the beach this morning...

Dave in Shirt

Of course, a picture of me wearing a T-shirt isn't going to convince anybody to buy anything, so I give you the lovely Danalyn, looking divinely hot in her Neverwas Fair shirt...

Tech Wench Neverwas Fair Shirt

If you want to get a shirt of your very own, in any style you wish, just visit Avitable's store on Zazzle.

Categories: Photography 2008, Travel 2008Click To It: Permalink


  1. whall says:

    I’m starting to envy you.

    No, not the vacation. Your stomach is so FLAT!

  2. kapgar says:

    Once you found your Tiki doll, did you get chased around the island by Vincent Price?

  3. Avitable says:

    I need to send you the one she took with no pants and her balls showing!

  4. Lisa says:

    Nine days in Hawaii…how divine. I hope you thoroughly enjoyed your vacation.

    Nice sales pitch on the shirt!

  5. ChillyWilly says:

    Man, that first picture is nice. No one on the beach (at least in front of you where you were pointing the camera). Even if you went no where else, that beach would have been nice to just sit at and relax.

    And thanks for the reminder on the shirt. I don’t need another t-shirt (just ask my wife), but I certainly don’t want to miss out on a limited edition Dave Toon.

  6. delmer says:

    I am sort of Catholic so I feel comfortable asking this …

    Does the Virgin Mary have to flash herself in order to get the beads? I know some of her statues cry actual tears; flashing would be a new trick.

  7. awytch says:

    Looks as though you are having a wonderful vacation, the turtles are great and I really like the statue pictures. You stayed away from the poi, right?

    And is Monkey taking his fire dancing lessons? Because I would like to see the video of THAT!

  8. Michelle says:

    What great photo’s, I especially like the cat pic. Don’t kill me for saying it but it needs a caption for lolcats (ducks and hides). Thanks for taking the time to share your vacation with us.

    P.S. You look hot in your wet t-shirt.

  9. NYCWD says:

    Oh no! Those statues! They’re the evil idol from the Brady Bunch!!!

    End of times… end of times…

  10. Turtles and totems are awesome!

  11. claire says:

    The painted church interior is very cool. And I really like the heads on the beach.

    I’m really impressed with how much you pack into a vacation, Dave. If not for a proneness to sunburns, I’d probably still be on the beach. 🙂

  12. Tug says:

    This is why I don’t go to Hawaii…I would never come back. I’d be that turtle’s best friend, just laying on the beach all day, every day.


  13. Hilly says:

    That church is beautiful and it’s nice to finally see a picture of you frolicking!

  14. Danalyn says:

    OMG! Dave in a wet T-shirt! Hot!

  15. kilax says:

    I have seen a lot of churches when traveling, but never one with such an ornate, interesting interior! And I love the gatto in front 🙂

  16. SJ says:

    Isn’t that the little church used in the John Wayne movie “Donovan’s Reef”? Or maybe it was another charming little Hawaiian church.

    Fabulous vacation you’re giving us!

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