Monday, June 05, 2006

Getting ready

Today's tasks included taking my dancing shoes to my husband's office, so that they wouldn't go moldy in my absence (we don't have air conditioning in the house, the office is "climate-controlled").

Yesterday, we went to Richardson's, a local black sand beach. There are rocky outcrops there too, and coral reefs, which ensures plenty of sea life, so it was snorkelling rather than boarding (the sea was "flat" anyway). My pal Jenna, my younger son, and I investigated around all the tide pools, too. We found two types of starfish, one with "brittle arms", two kinds of sea urchins, one with "pencil arms", sea cucumbers (I was brave and stroked one, it felt leathery. I wasn't brave enough to hold it in my hands, though Jenna and my son did. Apparently, they grip onto your hand with the little suckers they have on their underside), hermit crabs, a scorpion-like water-dwelling critter whose name I have forgotten, and froglike fish I am sure are descended directly from those that first made the big move onto land.

The sea fish are so beautiful, just like a in marine aquarium but huge by comparison, some parrotfish are the size of a hefty salmon. Somehow the size of them makes it hilarious, at least initially when you're getting used to the wildlife. The fish have fantastic Hawai'ian names: kihikihi, or the state fish, my favourite, humuhumunukunukuapua'a. Yes, I did not make that up. Roughly translated, it means "stitched together from patches, with a pig's snout". It is a good description. Also many Hawai'ian (people's) names are very descriptive or mean something: Kekoa (the brave one), Pualani (heavenly flower). Pretty good Hawai'ian sealife images can be found here and here.

I will be home in Finland in a matter of days. It's great, but I fear I will be homesick for Hawai'i while I'm there.

© 2006 Anna MR


nmj said...

. . . that pig-snouted trigger fish is a beauty . . . i cannot touch those sea cucumbers they give me the heebie jeebies!

Anne said...

I am miserably sick so your entry listed my spirits. The colors and variety made me think of the wonderful tide pool we once discovered at Cape May. Of course nothing like your experience but I can dream. To breathe the sea air and to relax in such a way would make me happy. I can go to our stinking shore teeming with hospital waste, if I can survive the traffic. A 45 minute journey can last for 3 hours. :) You will be blogging from Finland, of course?

Anna MR said...

Oh Anne, you poor thing. Hope you feel better soon! I will be blogging from Finland. I am currently debating whether to create a separate site for it or not, though...