April 2007 Archives

Kauai Vacation Day 6

Slow photo day Today was relatively quiet. We lazed in bed until almost noon. You can see the picture of my recently sun burned forehead. Olivia is morbidly fascinated with it. It's fine now. We went to Eggberts again for a breakfast feed. We rented Livie a wet suit for tomorrow's inner-tube which is rumored to have cold sections in the tunnels. She'll also use it to prolong her snorkeling time in the water.

We came back in the early afternoon. Olivia stayed home and relaxed while I headed for the Kumao'o Nounou trail head to bike. It's another way up to the sleeping giant where we hiked our second day. It's about three miles if medium to hard technical terrain with key sweet spots until it meets up with the other west side trail to head up the summit. I ditched the bike in the pines and hiked the summit again. I had my lunch up there and talked to some nice people from Houston, TX who recommended the snorkeling at Lydgate and Poipu. Then I hiked back down to my bike. I enjoyed a stellar downhill ride though I did walk the bike through some of the "vacation ending" technical sections. Don't use a hard tail; FSR only. Otherwise, an insanely sweet runout. On the way down I more heard than saw a wild pig; some grunting and a flash in the bushes. I also kept pacing with a lady running with her jack russell terrier named Samson :: chuckle ::.

After, I returned and cleaned up we went to Kintaro for sushi. We had the best Saki I've ever had called "Heaven's Door." So smoooooth. Then a big old sushi feast for me and tempura for Olivia. The price was soooo reasonable. We payed $60 for a meal that would have been $100 at our home town sushi spot.

Kauai Vacation Day 5

Today's photos. Our vacation is half started...or half over depending on your philosophy. Today was exhausting, but we accomplished very little. I took the rental bike up to Moalepe trail head up the road while Olivia slept in. It was a nice wet 4 mile ride. The downhill is pretty sweet, even wet, because the red dirt and lava rock are really solid compared to Chugach shit rock and skree sloughs.

We had "breakfast" at Bubba's Burgers which is tasty. They do nice flat patties like Winsteads in Kansas. Then, we drove down to Hanalei to do a simple bike ride in the Hanalei wildlife refuge. There were geese and cute little ducks that would waddle out of the taro fields and then dash back with beaks full of nesting materials. The short 2 mile road ended an a nice copse in a bamboo forest. The bigger trees had staghorn ferns growing on them.

Today was really about

Kauai Vacation Day 4

Todays photos. We got started a little later today. Sleep did not come so easily last night. We headed out to Eggberts for some farm style breakfast feeding. Standard IHOP type menu, but locally owned. Good food for a long day.

Our zipline tour was at 11:30 AM at the Princeville ranch. Thankfully, we were way ahead of schedule because the road crews were trimming trees reducing the highway to one lane in places. That really congested an already congested infrastructure.

We killed some time in the car until it was close to time to go on the tour. You literally had to weigh in at the office. Thankfully, I was measurably under 280 pounds (but not sexily under). Our guides, Matt and Will, were pretty laid back dudes. They got us outfitted quick. We rode these old German military vehicles to our launching spot. There were 15 of us on the tour.

Zip lining is incredible! Kind of a mixture of flying and sliding. That first weighted step of faith off the platform onto the line surprises you when you absorb the slack from the line. There were a total of 8 crossings and one suspension bridge; 7 crossings, then lunch, and then a final crossing. The suspension bridge is harder than it looks; like walking on a floating log.

Lunch was mega-fun. It was at one of those picturesque swimming holes you see in the brochures. The water was 16 feet at the deepest and great for diving. I must have jumped in 30 times. Lunch was really good too, especially after all the hard work having a blast. The guides packed pita bread, vegetable, and meat for sandwiches. There was also a bunch of fresh fruit and local cookies. After lunch, I swam more and we took the last zip line home. We were sad that it was over despite the fact that it was pouring rain. Though, we AK'ins were less affected than the poor hot house cali-boys.

Probably the coolest thing is that Will, one of our guides, responded to my query about downhill biking by offering to take us out! I gave him a card and phone number and hopefully he'll hook us up with a downhill session on Saturday. With that in mind, we stopped at Kauai cycle on the way back from Princeville to look into rentals. We got the brochure, left to come back t omorrow, and accidentally stole one of their topographical maps (blame Olivia). Then about half a mile a way, I realized that we only had one week left so the weekly rental was right on target, we owed them $3.95 for the stolen map, and Will was unlikely to find a tall bike for a fat-boy like me. So we flipped a U-turn and went back to rent a sweet FSR for me and a posh cruiser for Olivia. I plan to head up the Melapela trail every morning to put that bike through its paces.

Now we are catching a little shade time. We will get cleaned up. I'll put some aloe on my sunburned forehead. Then, we plan to head into town for some local eating.

Today was a blast!

Kauai Vacation Day 3

Today's photos. We started our day with a hike up the Sleeping Giant. A nice 4 mile 700 ft hike that starts in the norfolk pines and then switch backs its way up through progressively smaller trees. It's sweaty work for us Alaskans. The Trailblazer Kauai book does caution about the section after the covered picnic area, but it was pretty easy going for us and our hiking boots. The views were spectacular. Then we trundled back down to the covered tables for a little less exposure and lunch. We met a local up there Kani (sp?) who had hiked up wearing Tevas. We compared notes about AK and HI. He told us about the powerline trail as a good downhill mountain biking stretch. He told us that the best pizza was in the coconuts plaza. He also told us about a swimming hole and the end of Olehanu road. Man was he right! Nice deep pools of cool water and a rope swing! We hung out there for about an hour and rinsed the hike sweat off.

When we got back home we got organized. There is so much to do and only ten days! So, we made a calendar and booked a couple more events. Then we headed into town for some pizza. The pizza joint was a stand and some picnic tables. We were expecting something more like Moose's Tooth in Anchorage, but we took our pizza to a nearby bar and had some drinks. After dinner we drove east and stopped at Olympic cafe where we had breakfast the day before and had another drink. Then we just wandered the mustang east for a few hours looking for random turns and dead ends which seem to be an indicator of cool spots. Nothing really exciting after that. We stopped at the wildlife refuge and light house overlook for a few minutes. We finished the day picking up groceries where it rained into our convertible. Wet ride home! Now we are kicking back in the room reading. Tomorrow we'll have breakfast out, look into bike rentals, and go zip lining through the trees!

Kauai Vacation Day 2

We are much more settled and rested today. The bed in our B&B is wonderful to sleep in, and the sounds of crickets and doves are soothing to sleep to; though the feral roosters start crowing at about 5:30 AM. I woke early and headed to the end of the road where our B&B is to a trail head for an early morning hike while Olivia caught up on some much needed rest. She drove around yesterday while I snored in the mustang. After my 4 mile round trip hike up Moalepe trail we headed into town on this easter Sunday. We wanted to drive to the west side of the island. We drove the highway for a long time with the top down. The air blowing over the convertible top seems to act as an umbrella. We drove our way up Waimea canyon. We did not bring the camera which is too bad since the views were breathtaking, but we will be back in that area. We drove to the farthest west point on the road which is the Pacific Rim Missile Facility. We found some mango trees out there. The mangos were not totally ripe, but Olivia harvested a few anyway because they will likely ripen on the counter. There were agricultural research fields out there with people stationed under umbrellas out in the field. We can only speculate on there duty, but we think it has something to do with protecting seeds. For research, yield must be important. Finally, we drove "home" and had sandwiches and drinks on the patio. I drove back into town for essentials (beer, whiskey and cigars). We sat out on the patio, drank, smoked cigars, lit the fire pit and watched dusk turn to a beautiful starry night. We are enamoured. Here are the photos

Kauai Vacation Day 1

Today we arrived in Kauai, Hawaii after an all night flight. We got our rental convertible mustang and drove around the island all day because we arrived at 8 AM but could not check in until 3 PM. We got groceries and are now settled into our beautiful accommodations. Olivia is napping while I send pics on the in room pedestal iMac over broadband. We are very happy if a little road weary. Here are some pictures

Indispensable windows utils for Unix geeks

These are some utilities that make administering and even running Windows more tolerable to hardcore CompSci/IT types. It gives you a level of transparency that makes you feel more in control like on Linux. Process explorer (combines ps, lsof, netstat, kill, ldd, pstree etc.) Filemon (like lsof but implemented as callbacks) Regmon (same as filemon but for the registry) Tcpview (like lsof ?i or netstat ?a) http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/default.mspx Sendsignal (lets you do kill ?KILL) http://www.latenighthacking.com/projects/2003/sendSignal/ Baretail (like tail -f) http://www.baremetalsoft.com/baretail/ Now if I could just ?aptitude install? them :)