- Like everyone warned us, the big island is really an expensive place – especially the Kona side which also happens to be the drier side.
- Why are rental cars so damn expensive? I can’t understand the rationale. Even though we minimized our overall rental car usage to just 4 days, we still spent close to what I would normally spend for two and a half weeks for a similar size car in Michigan.
- But boy am I glad that I rented a car for those 4 days! We experienced the big island possibly the best way one should, sparring the fact that we couldn’t drive up to Mauna Kea.
- One thing that is sort of disheartening in the island is the the difficulties associated with finding a fresh fruit stall or a vegetable stall despite the obvious fact that the island is a tropical paradise for so many flora, that I, coming from the Indian subcontinent would so cravingly relish upon. Only during our drive, did we run into some fruit stalls. Also interestingly these farmers who put up these stalls really seem to do it almost to get rid off the excess (after selling them to their wholesale purchasers) – we did run into a few which were unmanned and were run on a honor system, which speaks volumes for the island culture in general.
- The big Island as we learned has 11 out of the 13 climate zones. True. As the joke goes, one could ski from the top of Mauna Kea all the way to the ocean and swim in an 80 deg weather.
- The Hilo side of the island is much cooler and the time we spent (almost 60 odd hours) was all wet.
- We met several ‘immigrants’ – Those who migrated from the main land to the islands. But for the strange reason (which I myself can’t seem to fully come to grips with) that Hawaii is 5 hours behind the Eastern Time Zone (or 6 during Spring and Summer), I have every reason to be part of that group one of these days. Go figure!
- My own intellectual evolution in the past 5 years may be a reason why I look at certain things more curiously and try to analyze things beyond the surface, than probably most visitors would. As an example, I traveled out of the islands, with a painful fact pricking me, as I can’t seem to ignore how the Christian missionaries had managed to wipe out the entire history of religious culture and tradition, that the native Polynesians once had – all without a single page in the history books critically blaming them for ‘oppression’. (On second thoughts, I would prefer using a much stronger word than just calling it ‘oppression’ but I am not doing that in this post).