One of the biggest thrills of my lifetime came in 1993 after purchasing our Kona Coast timeshare on the Big Island. In one of those “we can’t afford it, but we’ll pay for it somehow” moments, we decided to take a biplane tour of Hawaii out of the Hilo airport.
The sun gave luster to the cascading waterfalls as we flew up the coast from Hilo and then back over the Rainbow Falls and south to the mighty Kilauea Volcano. Our scarves waving in the breeze, the pilot flew the little open-air plane into the hot giant mouth of this monster still spewing ash and smoke. I caught my breath as we escaped and followed his drool down toward the sea. We flew low over a village frozen in time by hot lava which reached the rafters on some houses. Half buried cars lined the streets waiting for riders to dig them out. Surprisingly, the lava didn’t have to touch me to freeze that image in my memory for as long as I live.
Overwhelmed and excited, as soon as my feet hit the ground after landing, I ran up to the gruff old pilot and gave him a hug that took him so by surprise he couldn’t suppress a smile. This blog is for Hideko, a dear friend I met in California who grew up in Kapoho, the village memorialized by the great volcano. I have just finished reading her book, “Kapoho”. What is the chance that I would meet France Hideco Kakugawa who grew up in a town that I will always remember? Getaways will enrich your relationships and your lives. I highly recommend Frances’ book,”Kapoho”.