Kini's (and Kimi's) Hawaiian Travel Log

  I am in Hawaii on the island of Maui
  with Mike & Pauline Severns

Today is:

March 10, 1996 March 19, 1996 March 22, 1996
March 18, 1996 March 20, 1996 March 23, 1996
March 21, 1996

March 10, 1996


I finally made it to Maui after being flown a quarter of the way around the globe! First I flew over the rest of the United States, then I crossed the Pacific Ocean from California to Hawaii. It was a long trip in my travel box. When Mike and Pauline opened the box I was so happy to be able to breathe and run around that the first thing I did was climb one of the palm trees in their yard.  See the green coconuts? Do you see me?

They are like the ripe coconut that I sent to Riner to let you all know I made it here okay. I heard that the first grade students at school got to drink some coconut milk and that they didn't really like it. I didn't like it much either until Mike and Pauline put it in the refrigerator - then I liked it.  

I couldn't believe this street sign so I had to climb up to see for myself. The Hawaiian language has only 12 letters in the alphabet (a, e, i, o, u, and h, k, l, m, n, p, & w). Some of their words are very long. This street is pronounced Ho-ho-hala-hala. Say ho-oh like oh-oh, like something you didn't mean to do. 


March 18, 1996

Here I am getting ready to go under the ocean for the first time ever!  I am dry and on the side of the boat. 

For the last two weeks I have been taking scuba diving lessons and now I am finally ready to go in the ocean.  Look at how tiny my tank is compared to my friend Dave's! Anyway, I was not nervous at all. The first time I tried scuba diving in a pool here it was so cool. It was amazing to be able to breathe underwater! I felt so free and calm.  Scuba diving is not a sport like surfing or football. Being underwater puts your mind in a very calm state - almost like sleeping, but you are aware of all the animals and sights around you - and I saw a lot! 


kinisoldierfish.jpg (14693 bytes)Here I am 60 feet underwater at the little underwater volcano called Molokini. Molokini means many ties and is like my name, Kini. The red fish are soldierfish and are called that because they stay close to each other like soldiers. During the day they stick together in caves, but at night they go out of the caves to feed. 

They have big eyes so they can see well at night. They liked me because I was red with big eyes too! Mike took pictures of me and said that I did very well for my first ocean dive. I wore two pounds on my weight belt. molokini.jpg (36027 bytes)

This is a picture of Molokini where I was diving. It is the crater of an old volcano. 



March 19, 1996

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Can you see the octopus behind me? He was in a hole and I think that I scared him because his skin got all prickly and he changed color to tell me that I should go away and leave him alone. Look how smooth his skin is on top and how lumpy it is on the bottom. Octopus can change their shape and color very fast to blend in with their surroundings. Finally, he didn't want me around, so he just left! kinioctopus3.jpg (13327 bytes)

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The bright red animal with the spines that is sitting on the white coral above is called a red pencil urchin. The spines protect its body from the fish. It grazes on seaweed like a cow grazes on grass.


Do you think I got to see whales underwater? NOT! But I did get to see some dolphins. They swam by very fast and made a squeaking sound. 

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19thredfish.gif (5377 bytes)This is the most beautiful fish I saw the whole time I was underwater. It is a flame angelfish and it was three inches long and two inches wide.  19thwithteeth.gif (8132 bytes)This is a dragon eel. He has sharp teeth so that he can fish. I also saw a few sharks which were frightened by the divers and swam away.
During the day the fish are very busy - they are either eating, looking for food, chasing other fish out of their territory, trying not to be eaten by another fish, guarding their eggs, or being cleaned by the cleaner fish and cleaner shrimp. They never just sit around and do nothing like we sometimes do.  kinidivefish.jpg (15288 bytes)

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Mike's Birthday - March 20, 1996

Today was Mike's birthday so Pauline made him a birthday cake in the shape of a lizard - I guess because I was visiting.  No, it wasn't lizard flavored - just regular chocolate. mikescake.jpg (12821 bytes)

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Have you ever seen a turtle crossing sign? It is to warn people driving cars to go slowly to because the road is right next to the beach and sometimes the female climb out of the water onto the beach to bury their eggs in the sand.  But sometimes they get confused and try to cross the road. Last year a turtle was hit by a car so this year they put the signs up.


March 21, 1996

Look who I met at the beach today! her name is Kimi and she grew up in Hawaii. She taught me some Hawaiian words like "Aloha" which means hello or goodbye or love, "mahalo" which means thank you, "hoa" which means friend, and "ho'omalolo" which means recess!!  She is wearing a necklace of flowers called a "lei".  In Hawaii, if someone gives you a lei it is a very special gift, especially if they made it themselves.  ontowel.jpg (19877 bytes)

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I was lucky enough to be in Hawaii at the right time of the year to see whales from the beach and when I went  out whale watching on the boat. These are the humback whales and hey come to Hawaii in the winter because the water is warm and it is a good place for the baby whales to be born.  So we saw many mother whales and baby whales together.  Since they breath air they come to the surface every 15 minutes or so and that is when we could see them.  If the boat is fairly close when they breath, you can hear them exhale - it is pretty loud!  But the most exciting thing is to see them jump almost completly out of the water!  No one knows why they do this.  Maybe it is to let other whales or boats know that they are in the area.  Maybe it is because they are trying to make other male whales go away so that they can be with the female.  Maybe they do it to look around.  Whatever the reason, it is probably the most exciting thing I saw the whole time I was in Hawaii!!


March 22, 1996

paulinesly.jpg (13814 bytes) One day in the backyard I met Sly, a Jackson chameleon that lives in Mikes and Pauline's greenhouse.  Instead of one horn on his head like a rhinoceros, he has three horns!!  At first I was a little afaid of the horns but Sly told me that he onl;y uses them to defend himself.  You won't believe how he eats. His tounge shoots out about a foot and sticks to the bug that he was aiming for.  It is like a big rubberband! He will even eat BIG cockroaches. 

One day Sly was on Paulinine's shoulder when the phone rang and she was talking. Sly climbed up to the top of the antenna.  He is very careful to hold onto something at all times so he doesn't fall.

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slyandk.jpg (17170 bytes)    slyandk2.jpg (11608 bytes)

Sly and I went tree-climbing one day.  He likes to be as high up as he can get to get away from the cats and dogs that might eat him.  At night he climbs up a rope in the greenhouse and sleeps hanging onto the rope.  Isn't that strange?


March 23, 1996

If you go to the grocery store in Virginia, you will probably find only one kind of bannana.  But there are hundreds of different kinds of bannanas.  If you go to the store in Hawaii, you will find many of those different kinds.  Some are very tiny, some are red! I decided to climb up and look at the bannanas up close.  You can see how many grow in a bunch and do you see how they grow upside?? The  bottom of the bannnas point up!  Here is a quiz for you: Ask your teacher to get a bananna and peel it.  Then see how many sections the bannana separates into by putting your finger into one end.  How many sections are there?? bannanakk.jpg (24123 bytes)
diverwithfish.jpg (22796 bytes) Well, my trip is almost over and I'll be heading back to Virginia soon. I hope everyone at Riner missed me! I learned so much here in Hawaii.  Mike and Pauline have a great job talking to people (and lizards), scuba diving, and showing them the amazing animals that live in the ocean. They get to meet new people almost every day - people who live all over the U.S. and even in different countries, people who do all different kinds of things for their work, and people with many different stories to tell. Now Kimi and I have a story too. We went diving in Hawaii. What an adventure!


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