Sunday, February 8, 2015

Oahu: Manoa Falls

So this morning I found out that the Hawaiian alphabet has only thirteen letters, five vowels and eight consonants. Which explains the number of recurring vowels. In fact, the Hawaiian name for the state fish is twenty one letters long. Are you ready for this? The state fish, the triggerfish is also known as the humuhumunukunukuapuaa. Now say it fast, three times.

And while we're on the topic of state symbols, the Hawaiian state flower is the hibiscus, and the state bird is the nene (Hawaiian goose) pronounced nay-nay. I thought i would get a glimpse of it today as we embarked on a morning hike, but it is not as common as you'd think a state bird oughta be.

Crazy trees in Manoa

We journeyed inland to Manoa to see the waterfalls. Here lies the lush green rain forests of Oahu, where it rains almost every day. I managed to catch sight of two more new birds for my life list -- the Red-billed Leiothrix and the Saffron Finch. Pretty stoked about my lucky birding experience! The falls, however, was a different story. It hadn't rained that morning so the waterfall was unimpressive to say the least. James showed me a picture of the waterfall when he was here another time. Now that was a waterfall. This was a mere trickle.

With mixed feelings about the birds versus the falls, we headed out to the west coast to White Sands Beach Park, where people go to surf. I am done with trying new things for awhile, so I gave surfing a miss. Instead, I spent my time combing the sands for pretty shards of seashells, daydreaming about the jewelry I could create with them. My prized find was a tiny heart-shaped shell of the prettiest shade of maroon, though I wouldn't be surprised if the shells crumbled to pieces before I could do anything with them. I had to cram all my belongings into one carry-on. How did I manage to fit everything in the same suitcase before??

That's it. Tonight is my last night in Hawaii. Tomorrow, I visit North Shore, and then I would have covered all four corners of the island.

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