On Wednesday morning, we drove to the top of Haleakala before the clouds officially set in and blocked the view. Many tourist will crowd around the small gazebo at the summit of the mountain to watch the sunrise. It’s supposed to be pretty awesome and pretty cold, but honestly, I didn’t need to see the sunrise with 200 strangers. We opted for the 8:30ish time range and we had the place mostly to ourselves. It was like another world up on top. My grandma mentioned it looked like mars which I can understand because the dirt is kind of red, but Dad made a joke about how would she know what mars looks like. With almost 80 years to her credit, I believe my grandma knows a lot of things! The temperature was the coldest we saw on the trip – it was in the mid 50’s up top. That is right up this northwesterners alley. However, I didn’t really dress for the temp, so I’ll admit I was bit chilly. At the same time it was kind of a nice to be cold.
Once we scaled back down the mountain side, we stopped at a local lavender farm with some beautiful grounds. I tried a sample of lavender fudge sauce. Surprisingly it wasn’t bad, but then again it wasn’t super lavendery (if that’s a word). All the lavender products smelled good. I think I prefer lavender as a fragrance more than a flavor. We had a lavender cookie at the luau and it tasted like eating a flower. I’m not a fan of eating flowers. Just a little too strong. I do understand that it’s a popular food trend right now. Sadly, I’m not on the bandwagon.
After the lavender farm, we took off for the University of Hawaii botanical gardens. They weren’t extremely impressive, but it was free. We ended up eating a picnic lunch under the big banyan tree there and the shade was quite delightful. Plans were quickly made to head back to the condo so my parents and the boys could prep for hiking the lava flow they discovered the day before. April, Grandma and I stayed home. Since we’d been it the condo for a week, I took the time to give everything a wipe down and vacuum. I even emptied some of the trash cans and shook out the rugs. After a week of not cleaning, it felt good to do something of a tidying nature. From there I went into my room and took a nap and played on my phone. It was nice to lie down for a bit and not feel bad about resting. The hikers returned with many stories about beach combing and wild goats. Sounds like they had quite the hike!
As you guessed, Jeremy and I spent another sunset down at the beach in our new favorite spot with the lawn chairs. It was always a great time to connect and just talk about what we thought about the day and what we hoped for the next day. When we got back to the condo, we hopped into our mini-van and went to get gelato (a treat that had been on my sister’s wish list for some time). Ono Gelato is supposed to be the best on the island so we trusted the books and went there. I enjoyed a chocolate hazelnut gelato, but not without sharing some with my shirt and pants. I know, I’m smooth! Chocolate was a good way to end the day!