The Astute Recorder



Don't drive pork over the Pali. Rainbow Drive-in's delicious bites.

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South Shore sunset, Hawaii

Photos by Phillip Roberts: (From the top) South Shore sunset; the Pali; Coconut Island; Kailua Beach; Rainbow Drive-In and breakfast; Menehune Bank; and paradise rainbow.

There are so many things to do in Hawaii, especially if you love food, artifacts and learning island lore.

South Shore sunset

I have been reflecting on the natural beauty of Hawai‘i. How lucky to live in a place with amazing sunsets and stunning landscapes. Summer time is a great time, spent in an exotic land filled with fragrant flowering plants and enchanting vistas.

Don’t take pork across the Pali

Pork, pali road, Hawaii

Don’t drive pork over the Pali, especially at night. It’s one of those things about the islands you hear about. It’s told in Hawai‘ian folklore that Pele the volcano goddess created to kapu to prevent the half man half pig demigod Kamapua‘a trespassing in her domain. Ghosts and a mo‘o wahine (shape-changing lizard woman) are also supposed to be prevalent here. Legend says Kamehameha the Great fought a decisive battle here in 1795, forcing rival warriors off its steep edge. The Nu‘uanu Pali Lookout is an incredible place with striking views of the Windward side of O‘ahu and the Koolau Mountain range. Constructed in 1897, and opened to traffic the next year, the current Pali highway is the road to travel from Downtown to Kailua.

In 1931, an international soaring record was set here by William A. Cocke in his “Nighthawk.” His glider stayed aloft for 21 hours and 31 minutes setting a world endurance record for motorless flight up to that point.

Coconut Island, Hawaii

Coconut Island and Kane‘ohe Bay as seen from the Pali Lookout

Coconut Island (Mokuo Lo‘e) is the one-time home of the “Gilligan’s Island” television show. Now, it’s a bird sanctuary and the University of Hawai‘i Marine Biology Laboratory.

Kailua Beach

Kailua Beach, Hawaii

After the beach, it’s time for grinds.

Ono Grinds at the Rainbow Drive-In

Rainbow Drive-in, Hawaii

Established in 1961, Rainbow Drive-In is delicious. Local style plate lunch served up with two huge scoops of rice and a scoop of macaroni salad. You can choose from a number of entrees like the Fried ½ Chicken or the Chili Dog Plate for around $7.00. I love the BBQ Ahi Teriyaki plate which is served on Tuesday and Thursday only. It’s a lot of food and I usually have some leftovers.

Breakfast is served until 10:30 a.m. and is especially good. I highly recommend the sweet bread French toast. This morning I had the $5.25 breakfast special, 2 eggs (scrambled) and a meat selection with rice. I chose the hamburger patty with gravy. Other meat options with this plate include BBQ beef /pork cutlet, ham, mahimahi, boneless chicken, spam, hotdog, or Portuguese sausage. Rainbow Drive-In is located at 3308 Kanaina off of Kapahulu Avenue.

Hawaii breakfast plate

My Little Margie

From comes a classic television episode of “My Little Margie: The Hawaii Story." I’d never seen any of the series before and found it somewhat amusing.

Menehune Bank

Bank of Hawaii 1946 statue

Created around 1946 for Bank of Hawai‘i, this little fellow was a promotional giveaway to encourage island children to save their pennies. If you can find one now, it will cost you a pretty penny. In an antique shop, it will cost you around $75.00.

Bank of Hawaii 1946 antique

Some July events in Hawai‘i I recommend.

July 1 — Ukulele master Roy Sakuma and friends at the Honolulu Zoo. The concert is part of the “Wildest Show in town summer concert series” including Jake Shimabukuro and The Hot club of Hulaville in upcoming weeks. I haven’t been to the zoo in a while. Perhaps this will be a good time to go. $.

July 4 — Independence Day. There will be loads of fireworks in various places around the islands. Below: Last year’s display at the Aloha Tower Marketplace from someone’s lanai on YouTube:

July 5 WWE wrestling brings the stars of “Smackdown” and “ECW” to the Blaisdale Arena. $.

July 11 — Korean festival at Kapiolani Park. There will be tons of exhibits, performances, and food booths. FREE.

July 16 -18 Queen Lili’uokalani Keiki Hula Festival. $.

July 16 - 20 2009 Pacific Region Talk Story conference at the Queen Kapiolani hotel. The oral traditions of the Pacific and accomplished storytellers are featured in this inaugural event. It seems fascinating to me. $.

July 17 Tiffany plays Pipeline Café for an 80’s night. The former mall singer is on a tour. August is looking better for shows. $

July 18 - 19 Haleiwa Arts Festival. North shore artists, musicians, dancers and more showcase their talent. FREE.

July 20 - 24 —The 50th Hawai‘ian International Billfish Tournament in Kona Hawai‘i.

July 2613th Annual Molokai to O‘ahu Paddleboard race. Watch them cross the finish line in Hawai‘i Kai.

Hawaii rainbow photo

Until next month, Aloha!

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