Saturday, August 31, 2013

T Minus 42: Tired

Today, like yesterday, my iced coffee experiment failed. Maybe instant coffee tastes like burnt coffee. I don't know. I do know it ain't right!

I accomplished very little today. Before work, I watched a few Christy Tomlinson videos on YouTube. Work, as usual for a Friday night, saw very little business. I kept busy though. I tried to create a spreadsheet that would make the closing paperwork more efficient. I'm no spreadsheet expert though. I could have used some guidance from The Hubby but it was too late to call him. Maybe he'll do some pro bono work once he reaches the island. I just want to get rid of the multiple adding machine tapes we have to run. I'm too young to be dealing with an adding machine!

No excitement today, but yet I feel dog tired for some reason. I believe I'll skip watching videos tonight, take some Tylenol for my busted up knuckle, and go to sleep.


Friday, August 30, 2013

T Minus 43: Fails

Yesterday at the grocery, I picked up something new to try for breakfast - Michaelinas frozen stuffed biscuits. Today, I gave them a try. Ignoring the "microwave only" instructions, I removed all the packaging and slid them in the toaster oven. When I thought they'd be warn all the way through, I grabbed a fork - no hand eating these because who wants hot sausage gravy running down their hand? They turned out OK, a bit drier than I would like perhaps due to me using a toaster oven instead of a microwave.

After breakfast, I continued my culinary experimentation hoping to make something that tasted like a Bad Ass iced coffee. I pulled out the dried coffee crystals and read the label. I found nothing to indicate what a proper ratio of coffee crystals to water might look like. I also have no measuring spoons in the condo yet, so I suppose it might not have mattered if there were instructions on the coffee packaging.

I did the only thing I could. I eyeballed it...badly, I guess. Iced coffee? No. Iced triple shot espresso? Close. I ended up with a cup of something way too strong. My attempt at creaming it with non-fat dry milk missed in likewise spectacular fashion. Coffee experimentation day one, fail!

I'll try again tomorrow.

I opened my email and found a message from The Hubby. He gave me the go ahead to invest in the gelato paints I want to play with. I love that man! Have I ever mentioned that before? Now, I wait. Were I back on the mainland, in two days I would be opening my package from Amazon thanks to our Amazon Prime membership. Here in Hawaii, Prime still means free shipping but that 2-day guarantee? Not so much. Maybe more like 2 weeks. I'm still waiting on the toilet paper I ordered last week! Shipping, fail.
My busted up middle finger

Pushing the shipping wait out of my mind, I got to work being artsy-fartsy for a while. I remembered that I wanted to go to Longs and see if my rewards coupon covered the cost of a pitcher. I wrapped up my crafting session and headed down to the Pink Cruiser. I remembered to bring my new tire pump since both tires were low. I aired up the tires appropriately and, when pulling the pump off the valve stem, smashed my knuckle into the spokes. It took very little time for my knuckle to swell to twice its normal size. It turned a not-so-pretty color of purple as well. Ouch! Bike maintenance, fail.

As I got to Longs and started shopping, I realized I left home without my coupon. No pitcher for me today. I picked up a back of treats for a friend and headed back out to my bike. Shopping, fail.

I steered the Pink Cruiser to the mauka side of the highway for a visit to Office Max. Thanks to back-to-school sales, I found Sharpies and composition books on sale for prices way below what I've seen them for anywhere else on the island. I stocked up. No fails at Office Max!

I rode home, mostly gripping the handlebar with only one hand due to the swollen nature of my finger on the other hand.
A rainbow of Sharpies!

With time to kill before I needed to be at the gallery, I ate lunch - taquitos in the toaster oven, which turned out better than breakfast - and watched more YouTube painting and collaging videos. Finally, I headed to work. "Work" consisted of a training session teaching me how to close the Lahaina gallery. It turned out to be not very different than closing the Ka'anapali gallery, which I've now done several times. I only worked an hour today, instead of the 9 hours I normally work on Thursdays so that was a tad disappointing. Today's loss of hours leads to better things though, I hope, in that I now get to work in the Lahaina gallery on commission-earning shifts! Work, semi-fail.

I rode the Pink Cruiser home in the dark. I remembered to install the headlight and taillight before leaving the condo, which proved very helpful. It seemed like traffic flowed extra heavy tonight but I chalk that up to me being nervous about riding in the dark. I made it home safely though and with no more busted fingers.

Dinner turned out to be less than appetizing. I used a can of Hormel turkey chili with some cheese sprinkled on top and some veggie tortilla chips from Green Giant to make a sort of Fritos Pie type thing. The veggie chips tasted more like nacho cheese Doritos than anything else. The chili, already cooked, added nothing to the dish. I dumped in some hot sauce - made it spicy but dinner still tasted yucky. Dinner, fail!

I think I should go to bed before something else goes wrong! Back to normal work schedule tomorrow, closing the shop at Ka'anapali tomorrow night.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

T Minus 44: Food!

Whether it was the shower or just sleeping overnight, my brain seems to have quit imagining bugs crawling across my skin every few seconds.

I woke slightly earlier than I usually do when I don't work. I hopped out of bed fairly quickly though because I was hungry. I threw on some clothes and headed off to McD's for some breakfast on my way to the grocery. Having learned my lesson the last trip I made to the grocery, this time around I took 2 shopping bags with me instead of 1.
Lizard hanging out on the curb

I also tried shopping with coupons today. I only saved $12 so I haven't decided yet if the savings is worth the effort. Foodland is small and most options in stock don't match the coupons. Maybe once I have the Jeep and can shop at Safeway, I will save more. Still, saving $12 every trip to the grocery adds up over the course of a year!

The Hubby likes to say bagging groceries is a dying art. He wouldn't have like the bagging job I got today. I stopped many times on the way home to switch the bags between arms. The clerk at the grocery failed to evenly distribute the weight in the bags and one arm kept getting tired!

The frequent stopping turned out to be a good thing, though. At one stop, as I was bending over to pick up the bags after switching sides, I spotted a lizard - probably a skink - on the edge of the sidewalk. I pulled out my phone and asked him to say cheese. He cooperated fairly well!

Back home, I unpacked the grocery haul and decided it was a good time to eat lunch. I opted for a small "secret spicy poke" bowl I picked up while shopping. Verdict? Very spicy and very yummy!

After lunch, I worked on some collage projects. I also watched some painting videos. I need more supplies. I keep looking at these gelatos by Faber Castell. They're a type of gel paint that is supposed to be similar to watercolors. I might have to get some of those. At $50 for the whole set, it seems pricey.

Of course, what I really want is to subscribe to the Scarlet Lime Mixed Media Kit of the month. I doubt that happens, though, so I'll not hold my breath. I started a list of things I hope to pick up though. The Hubby probably started having flashbacks when he read this list, flashbacks of a studio filled with stuff like this that we sold when I decided I wanted to focus on jewelry instead of paper crafts...

I might paint tomorrow before work. Instead of opening the Lahaina gallery as I normally do on Thursdays, I start at 7:00 tomorrow evening to learn about closing procedures. Next week, I start picking up closing shifts in Lahaina. Commissions!!

Or, I might do something far more mundane, like walk to Long's and see if my $5 rewards coupon is enough to get me a pitcher so I can try making iced coffee in volume. I picked up instant coffee and instant dry milk today to experiment with. Wish me luck!


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

T Minus 45: Obsessed

My skin crawls as I type. My brain plays tricks on me. Maybe that's why I keep waking up in the middle of the night. My brain sees - and feels - bugs everywhere. It started when the bug guy came. Next, the Hawaii Department of Agriculture mailed out a public notice about non-native and invasive fire ants on the islands. A couple days later, The Hubby and I were chatting about the geckos eating the roaches. Tonight, when I turned on the bedside lamp as the sun went down, I spotted a fast moving bright orange speck of an ant scurrying up the wall.
A beach scene watercolor I painted

I have bugs on the brain, and my brain has bugs on me. The wind blows the hair on my skin and my brain nearly screams, "Hey! There's a bug on your arm!" Every few seconds, my brain tries to convince me something is crawling across my skin. Stupid bugs. Stupid brain.

The bright orange speck on the wall turned out to not be one of the dangerous fire ants the Hawaii Ag Dept so kindly warned everyone about. After a bit of Google research, I doubt this could be a fire ant unless this was is the queen. This little creepy crawly is too big.
Collaged Aloha
Bottle Vase

Before my subconscious became obsessed with bugs, I spent the day painting and collaging. I painted a beach scene, and a rose. I looked at my paintings from the other day and decided they needed more depth, more detail, so I touched them up and added an element here and there. After setting everything aside to dry, I thought it would be a good idea to go check out that Ace Hardware I mentioned yesterday.

It turns out that Ace sells gesso, and gel medium too, and at the same prices I paid after riding the bus into Da Big City. Lesson learned. Regardless, I enjoyed exploring the mall yesterday so I don't feel it was a wasted trip. Now I know that if I need medium in a pinch, I walk a short distance to get it. I picked up a couple small things at Ace before moving on.
Hamburger plate lunch.
Too. Much. Food!

I decided to check out the Nagasako Deli for lunch. As with all Hawaiian plate lunches, they piled my hamburger plate lunch with enough food to feed at least 2 people. The burger patties seemed more like a meat loaf, sans tomato product, than a hamburger. 2 hamburger patties and 2 scoops mashed potatoes, smothered in gravy and served alongside a generous scoop of mac salad. Everything tasted good. They simply give you way too much of it!
A watercolor rose

After the deli, I popped in a small salon I noticed to see if they do eyebrows. After being told no, I checked out a place that The Hubby would like. The Hubby won't like it. What I thought might be a liquor store wasn't, so I moved on. I made my last stop Boss Frog's to get a tire pump for the Pink Cruiser.

I sweated melted walked home with no shade. Sure, the scenery never fails to impress, with the beaches and the waves and the flowers, but today we lacked any trade winds to help keep things cool. My walk home was quite warm.
A hibiscus bloom in my
Aloha Bottle Vase

Along the way, I stopped to pick one of those beautiful flowers. Earlier, I finished up a collaged Aloha Bottle Vase and I needed something to put in it. The bloom inspired me and, after spending a bit of time studying it, I tried my hand at painting a hibiscus bloom. I set the first pass aside to dry, planning to finish it tomorrow. I'd run out of daylight tonight and it was time to move to the bedroom.

Before I go to sleep though, I believe I shall take a shower and see if I can get rid of this feeling of being covered with bugs!
Work in progress.
A watercolor hibiscus


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

T Minus 46: Flashbacks and Frustrations

I barely survived today. I must admit that today was the worst day since I arrived on the island and I find myself very happy that it's finally over. At work, my frustration levels hit high points I've not experienced in months.

My coworker today, a very nice local girl, morphed into a type-A personality today that I found hard to deal with. She evoked memories of The Hubby of long ago. Not that he doesn't still have his moments, but they are few and far between. Regardless, my coworker seemed determined to see how high she could get my blood pressure.

Nothing ran on island time today. Apparently I moved entirely too slow for her needs and I often found myself wanting to simply move out of the way while she simply did whatever the task was without explaining what needed to be done or why. It flashed back to asking The Hubby how to do something on the computer. "Click here," he'd say. "Type this. Now do this. Just...move." He would then sit and do whatever it was I needed done. Teaching never was his strong suit.

The worst part about today is that I became so flustered I started picking at my nails. I haven't picked at my nails since I quit working for the casino industry. Today, I picked until there was blood and it hurt the rest of the day. I even convinced myself the events of the day were intentional, meant to get me to appreciate working alone at the Ka'anapali gallery.

Maybe that was the case. Maybe my view of the world simply became skewed due to the dozen or so times a weird dream or sound caused me to wake through the night last night. Maybe the blame lies with the weird, unexpected phone call I received from The Hubby about an hour before I intended to actually wake up this morning. I don't know.

I only know I felt relieved to finally walk into the condo this evening. Moving on to lighter topics and less stressful ideas...

Do you know what an interrobang is? I learned about the interrobang last night. It seems like a great idea to me. I know I'd use it as punctuation if it were common. Intrigued, I researched online for a while and stumbled upon a place where I can get an interrobang necklace. Now, of course, I want one!

More than that, I want to know how long it will take our household goods to reach the island. I might be suffering from crafting withdrawal symptoms. Every day more and more ideas for new projects start bouncing around in my head. I look at my meager collection of mediums and supplies that I have stacked on the counter and know they are inadequate for me to bring my ideas to life. If I were The Hubby, I'd say something like "I'm getting twitchy."

I may take a trip over to ACE hardware tomorrow and see if I can expand my small stash of supplies. The section of the store containing the drafting and drawing supplies holds potential as a source of crafty stuff.

Of course, even when my boxes of crafty stuff arrive, I see much of it getting stashed in storage somewhere. Downsizing from a house with a studio to a 1 BR condo means I lose my studio, the kitchen table becomes my creative zone, and everything must get tucked away into a closet after each crafting section. It would never do for The Hubby's OCD to leave stuff sitting out. I can hear him in my head right now. "Everything has a place, and everything in its place." Maybe a small cart on wheels, with many, many little drawers and shelves, that can be tucked away...

I failed to find a new TV show or anything entertaining on Netflix last night. In fact, I never even tried. I surfed YouTube all night instead. All that did was serve to give me more ideas to let bounce around my head until I get supplies to play with. I might spend more time on YouTube tonight before I fall asleep, too.

I look forward to tomorrow, and daylight. My single tiny bedside reading lamp fails to be useful for anything other than its intended purpose, giving me just enough light by which to read in bed and nothing more. I need the sunlight during the day so that I have enough light to craft in!

Maybe a good crafty session tomorrow will wipe the frustrations of today from my brain.


Monday, August 26, 2013

T Minus 47: Anticlimactic

As I ate my bagel and iced coffee, I studied the bus schedule to finalize my plans for the day. Just about the time I get the bus schedule memorized, the Jeep will arrive on the island and I won't need it any more.

Da bus got me to the shopping center in Da Big City around 12:30. Feeling hungry, and being taunted by The Hubby with pictures of his cooking, I decided my first stop needed to be lunch. The Hubby showed me pictures of his home-made carnitas and the burritos he made with them. I suppose that put a subliminal message in my head to eat Mexican food because I walked straight to Maui Tacos III and ordered their signature fish tacos.

While eating, I noticed a tiny envelope on the ground. I picked it up and found the words Maui Diver Jewelry on the flip side. Curious, I looked inside. The envelope contained nothing other than a small metal key. I wondered if it might be important and decided that one of my goals for the day would be to find the jewelry shop and return the key.

I stopped in a variety of stores along the way. In one, I spied a book titled '101 More Things To Do With Ramen Noodles' which made me laugh. I came across Ben Franklin - the store, not the man - and found some gel medium and gesso. Everything seemed overpriced, so I picked up the smallest container of each and made a note to check prices on Amazon. I feel like, living in Hawaii where selection is thin and prices are high, we will definitely get our money's worth from our Amazon Prime account!

I picked up a few more things moved on. Soon enough, I found the Maui Diver Jewelry store. What might be behind the lock that this key opened? I only hoped for a good story to tell as I entered the store and sought out someone who worked there. The reality, however, proved to be very anticlimactic...and kind of boring. It turned out the key held very little importance at all, and was nothing more than a marketing gimmick. The jewelry store provides thousands of the envelopes to cruise ship guests. Those people bring the key to the jewelry store and get a chance to open a treasure chest on the counter. If the key opens the chest, the bearer of the key keeps whatever is in the chest.

The clerk working the store suggested I try the key. It, of course, failed to turn and the chest remained locked. She offered me a coupon as a condolence prize but I suggested she save it for someone who might be shopping for jewelry. I only hoped to do the right thing and return something of potential value to its rightful owner. Jewelry, I told her, wasn't on my shopping list today.

Having been keeping my eye out for shorts in each store I popped in and out of all day, and having failed to find any that were my size, I finally - reluctantly - walked into Macy's. At least I found some shorts that would fit. I tried on a pair of khaki shorts, cringing the entire time as I was sure I'd never wear khaki anything, but they fit. I also found a pair of monochromatic capris that fit, and were very comfortable. The white shorts that fit went immediately back onto the shelf. White shorts are a recipe for disaster! I found some linen pants that fit but they too ended up back on the shelf. I may never wear pants again.

Everything I found ended up being on sale. I spent less than $30 total on items whose original tags were above $50 each. On the way out of the store, I noticed a line of clothing made from organic cotton. Thinking of my sheets, if these things were anywhere near as soft as my sheets, I'd kill for some. I checked the tags. Not on sale. $60 for a pair of shorts seemed a bit extravagant just plain crazy.

I skipped over the fabric shop. It interested me, and I made note it was there, but until my sewing machine is here I saw no reason to shop in that store. I loved window shopping in a store I found called Kaleidoscope. They stocked some of the neatest things but I found nothing I couldn't live without so I moved on. Seeing it was about time to pick up my bus back to the west side, I made my final stop of the day - a pharmacy for a box of Prilosec until my Amazon subscription deliveries start kicking in.

Approaching the bus stop, I thought the young lady sitting on the bench looked familiar. It turned out to be the same girl that Amanda chatted up at the Lahaina bus stop a few days back. 22 years old, with a 3-month old baby boy, and very friendly. She sat in the seat directly in front of mine for the bus ride back to Lahaina and we talked story the whole ride home.

Back at the condo, I cooked up a faux tuna casserole using a boxed pasta mix and a can of salmon. I washed it down with my last Wailua Wheat.

I open the Lahaina gallery tomorrow morning, a typical Monday for me, so I need to get some sleep tonight. Before that, though, I need to spend some quality time on Netflix and find something else to watch since I finished up Neverland last night.


Sunday, August 25, 2013

T Minus 48: My kingdom for squares of paper

I need perfectly cut 1" squares of paper. You send them to me, I send you some type of Hawaiian souvenir like a postcard or a magnet. Deal? Seriously, if you have a way to cut perfect 1" squares of paper and want to send me some, let me know. I have an artsy idea bouncing around in my head but I need paper!
Colorful plant near our condo.
Might be a Ti Plant?

My day started with The Hubby poking fun at me for sleeping in so much. He said he can't wait until I get a big, wet, brown nose shoved in my face promptly at 7:00 every morning to let me know it's time for breakfast. To be honest, I wish that was already happening. As much as I like to wake up slowly, I far prefer waking up to a happy pup begging me to feed his hungry belly. He wakes The Hubby at 7:00 exactly every day. We don't know how he keeps his internal clock so accurate but he knows exactly when it's 7:00 and 5:00 every day.

After chatting with The Hubby for a bit, I tried some more collage work. I still need gel medium. I may venture into Da Big City tomorrow, taking the bus to the Queen K Center, to see if there is an art store there that carries it. If not, I suppose I'll be ordering some off Amazon.

On my way to work, I snapped a few pictures to share. First, I came across the gorgeous and colorful plant. I thought it was pretty despite its lack of flowers. It might be called a Ti Plant...
Palm trees and greenery hiding an
oceanfront bungalow from the street

A bit further down the road, a row of palms climbing into the blue sky caught my eye. Living on the waterfront in harbor town - how cool would that be? Even the property next door, that looks more like a shack, appeals to me in its own way. I know it'd probably take multiple millions to move in there. Since it is across the street from our condo, I will tell people I live $3 million away from the ocean.
Another oceanfront property

The bus got me to work about 15 minutes late. Yesterday, the boss lady told me she thought it was better that I be 15 minutes late than 30 minutes early. Island time, brah. That whole concept seems so foreign after working for 10 years in an industry where you had a 7-minute window in which you needed to clock in or else you would get written up. So long as my boss's boss, the owner of the gallery, never gets upset about my steady string of lateness I will continue to take the later bus. The point becomes moot in 48 days anyway, right?
A beach bum type getting some
shade while playing his ukulele

I failed to come close to my secret goal at work today. I kept busy despite the low sales volume. I think I failed to bring enough food with me to work today, though. By the time I closed the shop, I felt famished. During my shift, I tried my best to ignore the sundries shop that sits just a few dozen feet away from the gallery. To walk over there, even to just grab a candy bar, requires me to close down and lock the shop, and then reverse procedure when I get pack - pain in the butt inconvenience! I even try to drink just enough water to keep me from getting dehydrated but not so much as to require a shi shi break so that I won't have to go through the process of closing up the shop.
My new lunch bag. Honu!

Not having brought enough food, and feeling too tired to cook, I talked Maureen into swinging through the McD's drive-thru when she drove me home after work. I ate chicken nuggets while I watched the 2nd part of a mini-series called Neverland (I watched the first part last night). It's a whole different perspective on how Peter Pan and Captain Hook came to be!


The Hubby has board shorts with bottle
openers in the pockets. He needs slippahs
like these with bottle  openers on the straps!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

T Minus 49: Shorts

Today, I say 7 weeks! I have less than 50 days until the pups and The Hubby join me in Hawaii.

My brain short-circuited today. It happens fairly often, actually. The Hubby recently said that when he gets rich with his new business idea, he's going to send me to communications classes. Today, I managed to miss a communication somewhere and I came up short with what I needed to do. I read the email from The Hubby twice that explained exactly what we needed - overlapping insurance policies for the car. We need to maintain Nevada insurance until such time as we send them the plates back, and we need Hawaii no-fault insurance as soon as the Jeep hits the island.
My first attempt at some collage work

I called our insurance company and explained what I needed. Somewhere in there I got lost. I ended up with a quote for a new Hawaii insurance policy that would start when the Nevada policy ended. Failure to communicate. WTF is wrong with my brain? Now, I need to call them back and start this process over. Good times!

That call would have to wait, though, as I needed to get ready for work. Tuesday, while running errands, I picked up a couple pair of Bermuda shorts. Today, I decided to see if I could get away with wearing them to work. I arrived at the office and spent a few minutes talking with the boss. Since she made no mention of the shorts, I assume I looked acceptable.

I don't know if I like them better than the capris I usually wear or not. The same size as my capris, the shorts feel much looser. I reserve final judgement until I see how they feel after they've been washed and dried.

It feels weird to be wearing shorts again. I've not worn a pair of shorts in years, not since I shattered my knees hiking the Virgin River in Zion. For those interested, you can read that story on The Hubby's old blog. To make a long story short, my knees swelled to the size of cantaloupes. I became very self conscious of my knees and did everything I could to hide them when I ventured out in public. The resulting surgeries left 3 holes/scars on each knee and the time I spent laying on the couch recovering led to weight gain in my legs. I banned shorts from my life.

Today, I feel differently. The new me walks and cycles everywhere. My legs, and other body parts, seem to shrink every day. I slowly lose a bit of that self consciousness I've held onto for the past few years every time I look in the mirror. I actually feel a bit foolish leaving the shorts I do own behind in Vegas to be shipped instead of bringing them with me!

I kept fairly busy at work today, mostly restocking and organizing the shop. I made a few sales, but not enough to reach my (secret, nobody knows I have) goal. Whenever I work at the Ka'anapali gallery, I want to outsell whomever it is I relieve that day. Some days, I hit my goal, some I don't. Today? Not so much. I ended the day with $100 less in sales than the boss lady who had worked the opening shift. Realistically, the goal simply gives me something to be proud of when I manage to hit it but I have no real control over the number of people who visit the gallery each day. Plus, we're selling art, not girl scout cookies.

Maybe I should get into the cookie business! I love baking and I don't remember seeing a bakery anywhere on Front St....

The boss lady provided my transportation home after work. I ate dinner, which consisted of edamame, a spicy tuna roll, and some pineapple. Yummy!
My new bag a friend sent me

I posed for a selfie of me wearing my new bag I received from a friend and then sat down to try out some collage work using the touristy magazines I've been collecting and some of the stuff that came in the mail the other day. By the time I finished, I realized I need a cheap paint brush and some gel medium. I need to check and see if I can order gel medium using our Amazon Prime account.

Having finished up season 1 of Revolution last night - I doubt there's a season 2 based on the way it ended - I need to find a new show. I'll let you know what I find tomorrow.


Friday, August 23, 2013

T Minus 50: Blackout

I hate alarms. When mine went off this morning, I realized I still had 2 hours left to get the doors open at the gallery. I poked the snooze button and tried to get a few more minutes sleep. The next time the alarm intruded on my dreams, I decided I better get up and get going. I toasted up a new kind of bagel - flax, poppy seed, and sesame seeds - that tasted a bit like popcorn without the butter. With a schmear of cream cheese, it tasted pretty good actually.

I surveyed my limited clothing options. When we planned this bit of me being on the island for three months, I brought enough decent clothes to be able to find a job. I need the rest of my wardrobe! I finally opted on an orangish-pinkish number I picked up on the island somewhere. The day of blacks, tans, and greys are behind me. I dress in a much more colorful tropical fashion these days. I still wear black shorts. Black shorts pair with anything. Besides, I simply can't bring myself to wear hot pink shorts.

I checked my tote. Hot Pocket? Yes. Frozen grapes? Yes. Bad Ass coffee cup? Yes. All the important things accounted for, I unlocked the Pink Cruiser and hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work I go. I followed my new favorite routine for the days I work in the Lahaina gallery - park the bike under the Banyan Tree, grab a $1 iced coffee refill from Bad Ass, throw open the doors to the gallery.

I suppose I must be doing something right. My bosses informed me that starting next month I will pick up some commission shifts at the Lahaina gallery. I like the sounds of that.

Front St experienced a bit of excitement today. The power went out all along the harbor. Nobody seemed to know why but nobody seemed to be really upset either. This apparently happens with some regularity. We closed up shop, as did everyone else up and down the street, and I headed home with the understanding that the power might come back on and I would need to come back to the shop. The way people talked, though, I expected I was done for the day.

Sure enough, though, I barely had time to get home before my phone rang. Jeska said the power was back on in record time. I promised to head that way after I ate some lunch. This meant an extra 2 miles on the Pink Cruiser today! Thankfully, my legs seem to be getting used to it. I still get a bit sore but not nearly as bad as when I first started riding it. I peddle slow. After all, I'm not in the Tour D'France or anything. And, you know, island time, brah!

Back at the gallery, I met another of the artists we represent, Mario from Amata Jewelry Studio. I helped Jeska choose some new pieces for inventory in the gallery. There are some super pretty pieces in there!

No painting today - too dark when I got home. I opened the mail, though, and found an small envelope full of assorted collage bits - papers and such. This will be very helpful to get me started doing collage work!

Hopefully I find enough time in the morning, before I work in Ka'anapali, to paint. Tonight, I'll have to settle for a few episodes of Revolution before I fall asleep.


Thursday, August 22, 2013

T Minus 51: Taking it easy

Today, I planned to do very little. I slept in and, when I finally woke, took my sweet time getting out of bed.

I planned out some lunches and made a grocery list. I hoped to visit the farmers market today, so I texted my Maui Momma to see if she happened to be planning a market visit this morning. No luck. I settled for riding the Pink Cruiser to Foodland to pick up what I needed.

I arrived back home at the same time as my neighbor. She wanted to show me something, and seemed super excited about it, so I headed next door to check it out. She showed me a shark, a baby tiger shark, that someone taxidermied around 15 years ago. She apparently has had her eyes on it for a while at a local shop. I admit it looks pretty cool. It'd be better were it her own catch, but it still looks nice.

Speaking of dead things, I found a dead bug today. I'd not seen a single cockroach in the condo since moving in. Bug guy sprays yesterday and the little - and not so little - critters feel the need to come out and die in public view. This particular roach measured about 2 inches long. I grew accustomed to cleaning up roach carcasses once a month when the bug guy sprayed, but few reached the 2 inch length. There was one, horrifyingly big at nearly 4 inches, that I encountered back in Vegas. I encapsulated him in a jar of epoxy but even then he creeped me the hell out and I threw him in the trash.

Moving on to more pleasant things, I painted a bit more today. I found more YouTube instruction videos and learned a few more things. Today, I painted a background and set it aside to dry. Once dry, I'll paint some more elements on it. I also attempted a postcard-sized collage but quickly found that I am not ready for collage. I lack enough clippings and pieces to fill the space the way I would like - I need to collect more stuff!

While my painting dried, I tossed a load of laundry in the washer and cooked up some halfway decent broccoli cheese pasta for dinner. As I ate, I noticed water coming from the washing machine during the spin cycle. Yay. I called the landlord to let him know. He simply ordered a new washer, this one being nearly 10 years old and not worth repair, and let me know it would - hopefully - arrive about the same time as the dryer that is supposedly on its way.

Not only did I do very little today, I made it a short day. Opening the Lahaina gallery at 9:00 tomorrow morning so I need to get my beauty rest.


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

T Minus 52: Da Big City

I slept in today, which felt really good. When I woke, I checked the clock. Seeing I had plenty of time before the earliest potential arrival of the bug guy, I hopped out of bed. I ate my last 2 hard boiled eggs for breakfast before turning my attention to my care package from yesterday.
My first watercolor painting

I laid out my supplies - water colors, brushes, paper. I fired up YouTube on the tablet and quickly found a couple intro level courses to get me started with basic techniques. I watched and learned.

Ready to start, I laid a clear plastic bag over the tray table I have on loan from the landlord. I filled an empty pickle jar with water and and brought it, along with a saucer, over to my makeshift studio. I folded a sheet of the watercolor paper in half, moistened the cut line, and made a perfect tear to split the paper in half. With a few drops of paint on the saucer, I felt like I was ready to make my first strokes.

In my mind, I pictured the sky over the ocean, just before sunset, as I see it when watching from the sea wall along Front St in Lahaina. I thought that would be the perfect image to start with. After a short time applying color to paper, I stood back to take a look at what I'd just created. Not to brag, but I thought it was pretty impressive! I took a picture of my picture and sent it off to The Hubby to see what he thought.
Postcard-sized watercolor view of Lanai

Inspired, and with more time left before the bug guy would arrive, I wanted to paint a couple more things. I took the other half of my sheet of watercolor paper, folded-wetted-tore, and ended up with 2 smaller postcard-sized sheets to work with. I then applied brush to paper to recreate a scene that I see nearly every day - a crisp view of the island of Lanai across the ocean. I followed that up with a view from my memory - the view of a small slice of beach as seen hanging out the window in the bar at Cheeseburger in Paradise and looking down. I took pictures of each of those and sent them off to The Hubby as well.

The Hubby sent me a picture of what he was making for dinner, which reminded me to eat lunch, so I set my creations aside to dry while I cooked my last package of Ramen. My timing turned out to be perfect. Just as I finished eating, the bug guy arrived.

We talked about bugs - what bugs I might have seen, what bugs there could be that I might not have seen, etc. He sprayed the base boards with something that would keep the vast majority of creepy crawly critters out of the condo. He then strategically placed some droplets of a magical poisonous potion for the ants to find in the kitchen. He said they'd eat the bait and then they'd take some home where it would poison the whole colony. He told me I'd see a difference within 24 hours. Bye bye, ants!

After he left, I grabbed my wallet, keys, phone, shades, and headed out. I made a quick stop at the post office to send the puppy travel paperwork to The Hubby and then headed for the bus stop. I missed the bus I intended to travel on so I walked a mile over to the stop at the Wharf Cinema Center to pick up a different one. This gave me a reason, as if I needed one, to stop in Bad Ass for an iced coffee. I noticed they sold nice reusable cups with their logo on them that I could get refilled for $1 each time I needed a fix. I bought one - an orange one, but only because they didn't have any in pink.
My new Bad Ass cup

I finished up my coffee while waiting at the bus stop for the bus. After the other day, when I was given the no-no- finger waggle by the bus driver after trying to get on the bus with an iced coffee, I wanted to make sure I had no issues this trip. Apparently, only bottled water is allowed on "da bus."

The bus pulled out of Lahaina and followed the Honoapiilani Hwy along the coast and across the island to Kahului, "da big city." I climbed off the bus at the Queen Kaahumanu Shopping Center, a mall that looked as if it might have enough stores that I could do all of my shopping right there. Instead, I climbed on a different bus and headed across town to the Walmart. Not a big fan of shopping at Walmart - or dealing with the walmartians - it still seemed like a better idea to try and save some money there rather than at the pricier mall stores.

I failed to find a lot of things. My experience in the clothing department could best be categorized as disappointing. It seems not every Walmart carries the same lines and I didn't find much of what I hoped to find. My experience in the arts & crafts section proved lacking as well, though I managed to find a few of the items I wanted. The grocery section reminded me of the Walmart in Santa Fe, NM except unlike Santa Fe, where everything was mexican inspired food items, here everything seemed more influenced by asian foods - 37 varieties of Ramen, li hing fruits & candies, shrimp chips. I considered picking up some li hing products but I'm nervous about trying them. I tried li hing mui before and found it way too sour for my taste. It put Sour Patch Kids to shame!

I filled the cart with a few days worth of food, carefully keeping track of my basket contents to make sure I stayed within a single shopping bag. Bus riders have carry on limitations. Between the cashier and me, we managed to get my single reusable shopped bag crammed full of stuff.

Back at the bus stop, I found a young guy pacing in front of the bench while strumming away on his guitar and singing. He sounded pretty good. I was happy to have gotten to hear him play, and to be able to have snapped his picture before he moved on.

The bus arrived and I stepped back, as is customary, to let any disembarking riders off before I got on. The driver shook his head and waved me up the steps instead. I had my choice of seats, being the lone rider on the bus. That felt a bit twilight zone like to me. At least it only stayed that way until the next stop.

Back to the Queen K shopping center, bus transfer, and back along the coast to the west side I went. Night fell by the time I reached Lahaina, and I walked home in the dark. Actually, I lie. With so many street lights and homes along the way, the road stays fairly well lit. I kind of enjoy that walk at night, watching the light bounce off the ocean waves, especially if there is a full moon. My bag grew heavy as I walked though, so I moved as fast as I could.
An artist drawing with crayon along
the sea wall in Lahaina

Once home, I heated up a just purchased can of Chef Boyardee. I felt The Hubby cringe from 2k miles away as I did so. He never liked this stuff as a kid and, the one time we tried it as adults, he failed to get past the second bite before looking for something else to eat. It turns out, though, I can still stomach canned pasta enough to make it a cheap staple until The Hubby gets here and starts cooking real food.

Without enough light to start painting again, I grabbed my phone to make a sad phone call to a dear friend of our back in Vegas. He had left a message for me to let me know that a good friend of The Hubby passed away. He had fought, and beat, cancer, but the cancer returned after a few years and proved to be too much. RIP, Smoke.

After that, I cleared my painting supplies from the tray table since it doubles as my nightstand and I would need it to hold my tablet, phone, kindle, etc. With everything set up, it's time for an episode or two of Revolution before I fall asleep.


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

T Minus 53: Friday?

Happy Friday! Over the years, "Friday" became a relative term, especially after working in Vegas for so long. Sure, to many people, Friday means the sixth day of the week on the calendar. To those of us working in non-traditional jobs, Friday simply means the last day of our work week and has nothing to do with what day the calendar says.
The Maui Hands gallery in Lahaina
just before opening for the day

I actually thought I might be leaving behind that whole "It's my Friday" concept when I moved to Maui. Apparently, I thought wrong. Maui, similar to Vegas, caters to tourists. As such, stores open their doors every day of the week. Luckily, nobody in Maui works graveyard shifts. We start rolling up the sidewalks around sunset. Work hours are shorter here than Vegas. I like that.

I don't particularly like working 5 days a week, like I just did. Sure, the extra money is nice, but I shoot for a 4-day work week every week. Full-time work holds no appeal for me at all. As the lyrics to a song The Hubby likes to quote say, "I've had a lot of bad experiences, like full time jobs."

Working full-time tires me out. It took every bit of energy I had left after work just to lift my leg over the bar on the Pink Cruiser. I started a soft, slow pedaling and gave only enough effort to keep the bike moving until I got home. Thankfully, I have zero stop signs or lights on my commute because I had no intention of stopping my forward motion until I reached the bike rack at the condo. The only thoughts bouncing around my head were thoughts of collapsing onto my bed after dragging myself up the steps to the condo.

Fate held other plans for me though. When I finally reached the top of the steps, I nearly tripped over a box sitting in front of my door. "Big mail!" I used to always ask The Hubby if the carrier delivered any big mail that day. Big mail = goodies.

I slipped into my lounging clothes and cut open my box. I expected a box to arrive, a care package from my best friend back in Indiana, but not until Wednesday. I was excited to see it today.

My friend spoils me. Opening the box, I found tons of crafty stuff. At some point in the past, I mentioned that I wanted to fool around with water colors and learn to paint. She sent me all of the basic supplies I need to get started with that new obsession. Getting the box early, and seeing what was actually inside it, made today seem like Xmas!

With the excitement I felt, I completely forgot about wanting to collapse on the bed. Instead, I cooked up a morning star burger for dinner, and celebrated with a Wailua Wheat. One beer tastes good every once in a while...unless you are The Hubby, who never needs a reason to enjoy a beer, especially if he sees one he's never heard of.

Tomorrow, I believe I will set up and make my first attempt at painting in the morning. The bug guy comes anytime after noon, so I will have some time in the morning. Of course, there will be no alarm clocks tomorrow, so I might not wake up until noon!

Tonight, I look forward to watching some more episodes of Revolution. I tried to get into The Riches but just couldn't get interested enough to watch more of it. Revolution, though, seems pretty good so far. I laughed last night when I realized the episode I was watching supposedly took place in Noblesville, IN. We lived in Noblesville before we moved to Vegas. The square looked different in the TV show and made me wonder if they shot it on location or simply tried to replicate it on a set. I haven't seen the square for nearly ten years. Crazy thought...or I suppose I should say lolo...

Today's word of the day is lolo, a Hawaiian/Pidgin word that means crazy (or numbing or stupid). I prefer the definition of crazy. It fits, especially in something like the compound word pakalolo (crazy weed) which is that medicinal plant a lot of people like to smoke to relieve their stress, pain, loss of appetite, etc. *wink wink*

Aloha Braddahs n Sistahs!

Monday, August 19, 2013

T Minus 54: Survival

I feel like I barely survived today. Exhausted. Absolutely spent. Today went about the same as every other day so I blame the emergency dosing of allergy meds I crawled out of bed for some time in the middle of the night. It seems the dusting that I did at the Ka'anapali location yesterday affected me more than I realized, or else there was a big release of pollen during the night. I felt like clawing my eyes out and cutting off my nose!
Another beautiful day of clear skies
over Whalers Village at Ka'anapali

Allergy meds that make me drowsy and the fact that I woke up to an alarm clock - I hate alarm clocks - get the blame for me being so tired all day.

I threw on some clothes, unlocked the Pink Cruiser, and pedaled my way down Front St to the Banyan Tree Park. Any time I work at the Lahaina gallery, I prefer the bike as my mode of transportation. I found a different spot to lock her up today, which proved far easier to get the U-lock into position than the spot I used the other day.

I arrived in town early enough to be able to grab an iced coffee from Bad Ass. I may be finished with hot drinks for a while. Tea, like I was drinking every morning, sounds unappealing for some reason. I know I'll likely come back around to my tea habit but, for now anyway, cool and refreshing will be the way to go! Bad Ass makes an awesome iced coffee. I'd prefer to make my own - cheaper - but the majority of my life sits stacked in boxes in a 10x10 storage unit over 2,000 miles away. Maybe I can find a super cheapo coffee maker...

Today, I worked with Sandra. Retired, silver-grey hair with a neon pink stripe dyed on one side, and matching neon pink rimmed glasses - me in 20 years! Business seemed slow, relatively speaking. Slow for Lahaina, the same amount of business could be considered a gold rush day at the Ka'anapali location. I sometimes wonder how the Ka'anapali location makes sense to keep open but I'm sure the owner knows what she is doing.

The day moved along great until lunch. Out of hot pockets, I needed to find another option. I opted for BK where I picked up a new item off the menu - buffalo chicken strips. They weren't bad, considering they were fast food. I almost decided not to eat at all after what happened while I was waiting for my food to come up.

I decided to use the restroom. BK offers only a small, single stall, unisex option at the Lahaina location. The door stood ajar, and thus unlocked, as I approached. I pushed open the door to find some guy sitting on the toilet taking care of business. WTF, over?!? Who the hell uses a public bathroom without at least shutting the door, let alone leaving it unlocked? Like I needed that image burned into my retinas right before eating lunch. What did I do to deserve that?
My Rastafarian harp playing friend

I spent the rest of my day trying to scrub that image from my memory. After work, I decided to walk through Banyan Tree Park and take a few pictures. I came across the harp playing Rastafarian I first encountered at a Second Friday event. That night, I failed to get a decent shot of him due to the low light conditions. Tonight, though, I had enough light to get a decent, although grainy, shot of him. After getting a few shots, I made my way to the Pink Cruiser for the ride home.

As soon as I started pedaling, I wished I had taken a Meloxicam before work. These 9-hour shifts on my feet kill my knees. Riding proved strenuous, and I considered hopping off to walk the bike home, but I pushed on and made it back to the apartment complex. Earlier in the day, I planned out a trip to Foodland on my way home from work. That plan fell apart as a I struggled to make it home.

The wonderful aromas wafting over from the BBQ area at the condo made me remember why I had wanted to go to Foodland. I knew there wasn't much waiting for me upstairs. I stared at the kabobs arranged on the grill as I walked past where my neighbor was cooking. They smelled awesome.
The Banyan Tree in Lahaina

After dragging my tired legs upstairs, I settled for Ramen tossed with some frozen broccoli and tuna. I remembered some left over edamame from my lunch yesterday so I ate those while the noodles cooked. Not a bad dinner, all things considered.

Tomorrow, I hope to go check out a mall in Kahului. As The Hubby says whenever I mention going to Kahului, I'll be going to the "Big City" tomorrow! Or maybe Wednesday. Arriving home this evening, I found a note on the door that said the property owners were having the bug guy spray on Tuesday. I've seen no bugs other than hundreds of teeny tiny little ants but I hope the bug guy makes them go away. They've been creeping me out! I even bought poison of my own to try and get rid of them. They ignore the poison. Anyway, if the bug guy comes early enough that I can make a bus trip across the island, I go tomorrow. Otherwise, I go Wednesday.

In the meantime, I hope to recover from my day of survival while watching a few episodes of The Riches. I finished up Weeds so now I'm trying to find another show to get involved in.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

T Minus 55: Numbers

Maybe it's because I chose not to have kids, but I still don't understand parents when they tell people their baby's age. The baby is one year old. Just say "One." You don't have to say something superfluous "Fifteen and a half months."

Thinking about that made me think about my countdown to October. In just a few days, I can say "Six weeks to go" instead of 54 days. Maybe the smaller numbers will make it go quicker. Maybe the new mommies use bigger numbers for some psychological reason too. Still, that kid is one year old. Just say "One."

The gallery was slow again tonight. It gave me a chance to start studying up on the artists. Since the boss left me a note hinting at pop quizzes coming soon, I thought it would be a good idea to redouble my efforts at learning this stuff. I even devised a system of sorts, a chart of each shelving unit in the gallery to use as a study guide. I included the art genre, artist name, artist code, art medium, and home island.

I hope it works. The pop quizzes thing makes me nervous. I've never been a numbers person. I don't like numbers. I like charts and diagrams, and visual things. I also don't learn well from just reading a book. Pictures! I need pictures!

On top of all that, my memory sucks. At the end of a day, I struggle to remember what I did that day. Remembering something like 300 artists - 300 - and all of the extra information that goes with each one honestly might not be possible for me. Now I get to be afraid of losing my job because I don't know enough by a certain time.

Four galleries on the island. I work in two of them. The variations between galleries are significant. I'm doing everything I can think of, short of flash cards, to learn all this stuff. It's daunting. Today, I mapped out the shelving units in one gallery, the smaller one. I didn't have time to map out the wall art, jewelry displays, or pedestals. And, like I hinted at, I still have a whole other gallery to focus on as well.

For me, it could easily take months if not years to remember all this stuff. I'll look at it tonight. Will I remember it when I wake up? Highly doubtful.

Speaking of waking up, I finally laid my hands on a power strip so I can plug in all my electronics in one place each night. Now I can have the tablet charger, lamp, iPhone charger, and external speakers all set up on "my" side of the bed. I've been sleeping on the side of the bed that The Hubby usually sleeps on, so...hope I don't wake up confused.

Of course, it doesn't take switching sides of the bed to make me wake up confused. When I wake up and look in that direction, my brain still expects there to be a person there. When I wake up and see a sofa like at the apartment last month, or an empty wall like at the condo each morning, it takes a moment for me to clear my head. I really miss seeing The Hubby in his spot.

I should watch some Weeds and get to sleep. I open the Front St gallery in the morning. Hopefully they can eventually work out a schedule where I don't have to close a shop one night and open the shop the next morning.

If you like rock, check out a band called Drop Nine. I chatted with a friend from high school who is a bad ass drummer (you know who you are). He told me about his new band, Drop Nine. I heard a song - awesome! I can see a label and album soon for those guys.

OK. Time for Weeds.


Saturday, August 17, 2013

T Minus 56: Island Time

I love my new bed. Love it! This morning, I slept in quite a while, slowly waking nice and late. Even when I finally woke, I found I didn't want to get out of bed. Soooooo comfortable. At least I didn't work until 3:00 this afternoon, so I was able to enjoy laying around and being a bum.

I did need to eat, though, so I grabbed a couple hard boiled eggs from the fridge and had breakfast. When I came back to the bedroom, I decided to swap out the borrowed sheets I had on the bed for the new sheets The Hubby bought for us. The new sheets are organic cotton from Coyuchi. Having never heard of them, I didn't know what to expect but these may be the softest sheets I have ever laid on. So soft, in fact, that I couldn't resist laying back down and enjoying them until it was time to go to work.

I caught up on Twitter and then decided to read a story The Hubby wrote that took me on a very emotional roller coaster. He had me smiling, picturing the pups running around. He had me crying when I thought our boy had hurt himself. Finally, I ended up laughing with the final paragraph. I sure miss my family.

I finished my morning watching a couple episodes of Weeds and - finally - doing some laundry. No, my dryer still hasn't been delivered but the landlord came by to hook up a temporary dryer. The dryer is too big for the space it is supposed to be in, so the landlord ordered a replacement. The replacement, originally scheduled for delivery on August 10 and then August 12 and then maybe sometime this week, is now scheduled for delivery on September 12! The landlord felt bad so he came and rigged up a solution so that I could have a dryer until - if? - the other one gets here.

Today, I started really feeling like living on island time, so much so that I opted to take a bus that gets me to work 10-15 mins late. It turns out not to be a big deal. Work today was slow. Like molasses in winter slow. A few visitors stopped by to browse but one one $26 sale my entire shift. How's a girl supposed to make commissions on a single $26 sale?!? Luckily, I picked up an extra shift this week. Even better, my extra shift will be at the Lahaina store. I don't know whether I am managing or selling that day, but either way I'm happy for the extra work.

Home. Dinner. Very anxious to lay on my new super soft sheets covering my super comfortable bed. Have I mentioned how much I love my new bed? I see me laying down and pretty much falling asleep almost immediately, so I might not get in too many episodes of Weeds tonight.


Friday, August 16, 2013

T Minus 57: Awesome Day

I'm alive! I've beat whatever virus invaded my body and, aside from waking up to an alarm clock, today awesome. It started, of course, with the most restful night of sleep I've had since arriving on the island. The new mattress proved especially comfy and I woke up backache free this morning.

A couple watching the sun set
over the ocean in Lahaina
I nearly skipped around the condo while I got ready for work. Not really in a mood for tea, I decided to grab a bottle of water to enjoy with my muffin and set out for the gallery. I reached the bottom of the stairs and saw the Pink Cruiser sitting there nearly begging me to ride her to work. I unlocked the bike, stashed everything in my basket, and hopped on. At that point, I only hoped I was well enough to be riding a bike but it turned out I didn't need to worry. The cruise down Front St was exactly what I needed.

I opened the gallery and immediately went to turn on the A/C. The owner likes for us to turn the A/C off overnight. The Hubby says she's probably just trying to control costs but first thing in the morning, it's a sauna in there. It might be a zero sum game given how hard the A/C has to work to cool the place down each morning.

Jeska arrived, bringing me a surprise - an iced coffee from Bad Ass Coffee! I officially love her now. The coffee tasted perfect, especially after having skipped getting one at Bad Ass when I visited Honokowai yesterday afternoon. I told her I felt really good, had slept really well, and was looking forward to working today. "Welcome back to the living," she said.
Watching the sunset is a
popular thing to do on the island

I spent the day learning - met 3 new artists - and helping out in the gallery. The artists I met today were Joel Heinz, Cudra Clover, and Janet Spreiter. I survived the entire 9-hour shift and still felt great when it came time to go home.

As I left work, I realized the sun hadn't set yet. Watching a gorgeous island sunset would be a perfect way to end the day. I pedaled almost all the way home, stopping near the end of the splash wall. I parked the Pink Cruiser, found a good spot to sit, and started shooting with the phone camera. Finally, I got the timing right and the clouds moved out of the way enough that I got some good pictures.
The sun setting over
the ocean in Lahaina

As I made my way home, twice men shouted out Aloha greetings though the way they said it reminded me more of Joey from the show Friends. I never realized, or noticed, before any guys attempting to hit on me. I remember many of my friends back in Vegas warning me that I would get hit on - a lot - when I got here but today was the first I noticed it. Maybe it was the Pink Cruiser that drew all the attention! That thought made me laugh. Silly boys.

I locked up the bike at the condo. It takes a lot less time to lock her up at the condo than it does at the Banyan Tree Park. I guess some bike rack thingies are more user friendly than others.

I found another use for the American cheese my Maui Momma gave me. I cooked a Morning Star burger patty in the toaster oven, toasted some bread, and made a patty melt type of thing with some mayo and pepper sauce. It went well with the steamed broccoli and the Wailua Wheat.

Finishing up the day with a pineapple popsicle and more episodes of Weeds.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

T Minus 58: Finally!

I woke abruptly to someone knocking on my screen door. It bothers me that I don't have a peek hole in the door. I hesitantly opened the door and found a FedEx guy trying to manhandle a giant roll of cardboard up the stairs. It looked heavy. Finally! My mattress arrived. I heard the sound of angels singing and thought about dancing. I felt sorry he had to haul that thing up the steps by himself, but at least I wouldn't be sleeping on that air bed any more.
A pair of slippahs on the beach at
Honokowai Beach Park

As soon as I had the door closed, I set about unwrapping the vacuum seal and unrolling my mattress. I then managed to get it up onto the frame. I was right - it's heavy. As soon as I had it on the frame and my borrowed sheets draped across it, I laid down. It felt so much more comfortable than the air bed. I looked forward to getting a good night's sleep later tonight. I deflated the air bed and stashed it out of the way.

Now I just need for the sheets that The Hubby ordered for me to shop up!

After the workout I got getting the bed set up, I ate one of the muffins I picked up yesterday and headed for the bus stop. 3 days a week, they open a farmers market in Honokowai, and I wanted some fresh veggies.

While at the bus stop, an older Pinay, Ederlina, sat down and immediately started talking story like we were old friends. I listened as she told me about her kids, her grandkids, her deceased husband, her boyfriend, and herself. She invited me to come visit her at the Napili Market where she works, and then suggested I come home with her to eat dinner with her family. I started craving adobo again, and maybe some lumpia and pansit. She swore she wouldn't forget me when we parted ways for different busses at Whalers Village.

I finally reached Honokowai only to discover the farmers market ended at 11:00, which was before I had even gotten on the first bus. Disappointed, I browsed the indoor market but didn't see anything that really piqued my interest. I left empty handed.
Taco plate lunch at the Latino
Market in Honokowai. Package
deal for $9.00

Around the corner, in the same building, I found a Latino market that offers tacos for lunch. I ordered up 2 pork tacos, a side of beans, and a can of soda. In front of the market sits a lone table on the sidewalk, the only place to sit and eat, so I did. As I was finishing up, a 50-something beach bum type walked up and asked if he could share my table. As he ate, he assured me that I had found the best, truest, Mexican tacos there are to be found on the island.

After lunch, I summoned all my will power to keep me out of the Bad Ass Coffee shop that sits in the corner of that building. An iced coffee sounded good, but I had just had a soda I didn't need. After a quick browse through a small gift shop in the same building, I walked across the street to the Honokowai Beach Park where I sat for a while and watched the water rolling over a small reef. A few snorkelers floated in the gaps among the rocks, no doubt trying to catch a glimpse of the colorful fish - it was too early in the day to catch sight of a honu.

One thing I can say about Honokowai. It always seems cooler and breezier than in Lahaina. Today, it was downright windy for a while. After an hour or so, I sought out my bus back to Whalers Village. In between that bus ride and the bus back to Lahaina, I popped in Sephora to replenish my makeup. At island prices, this will be the last time I buy this type of makeup. It's time to find a different source.
Baby pineapple. So sweet,
juicy, and the center is still
soft and edible!

Back home, I texted The Hubby for a while until he said he was going to sleep. This 6-hour time difference kind of sucks. I grabbed a steak knife and sliced up the baby pineapple I had picked up. Perfect snack!

While eating my pineapple, I riffled through the day's mail. I heard that sound again, the sound of angel's singing, when I ripped open the envelope from the Hawaii Department of Agriculture. The traveling papers for the pups arrived! I apparently filled out all the paperwork correctly and paid the appropriate fees because I now have everything I need to have the pups delivered to me directly from the airline in Kahului - no quarantine, no 5-day wait, no cages. This next 58 days needs to fly by!
Traveling papers for the puppies.
Only 58 days until I pick them
up at the Kahului airport!

I celebrated my find in the mail with some cold fried chicken, mac salad, and a beer while watching more episodes of Weeds.

I hope business tomorrow is better than it was the other day. I could use some sales to pad the paycheck.


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

T Minus 59: A Milestone

Pictures! I remembered to take pictures while out and about today. More importantly, though, my countdown reached the 50s today. A milestone! I officially have less than 2 months to go until I see the family again. It's still a long time, but 50-something sounds so much better than 60-something.
Clouds roll in over the harbor
late afternoon to cool things off

Today being a no-work day, I decided to go over to the apartment I rented when I first arrived on island and get it ready for the owner's return. I made sure I hadn't left anything behind, cleaned up a bit, put things back where they were the day I moved in, and emptied the trash. It didn't take long at all, but I was drenched by the time I finished. That apartment is located on a property adjacent to the one where I'm at now, a very short walk from here, yet I still needed to change clothes after I got back home. I stood in front of the A/C for a long while to cool off before moving on to other things.

While I sat and watched episodes of Weeds, I thought of ideas for the apartment. The pantry in the kitchen consists only of shelving open to the room. I think perhaps a curtain of some type would be good to cover it up. Maybe a beaded curtain - not the hippie type, but something more crafty-cool of course.

Just inside the entrance to the condo is another open shelving unit where I seem to toss my keys every time I walk in the door - The Hubby will love that idea. I think over there I will do some storage bins, similar to these. I made something like that for my studio in Vegas using 12-pack beer boxes covered in fabric. Once the beer-drinking Hubby gets here, it shouldn't take long to have enough of those to create some bins for these shelves!
Jasmine blooms can be found
everywhere around our new home

I wish I could start on these projects today but I will have to be patient and wait for all my crafty stuff to get here via slow boat from the mainland.

Speaking of slow boats, the boat carrying my mattress seems to have gotten lost. Originally, the shipping tracker online told me the mattress should arrive on Friday. Yesterday, it told me it would be here a day earlier, on Thursday. Today, it tells me it won't be here until next Monday! I might scream. I just want to sleep in a real bed - not too much to ask, right?

Maybe the boat carrying the mattress is the same boat carrying the new dryer my landlord says is on its way...

Back to the beer-drinking Hubby. His beer hobby will be more expensive here. Good beer, such as he drinks, is 50% more expensive than on the mainland. Weirdly, even locally brewed beer costs more locally than it cost on the mainland - Maui Brewing Company brews seem to be about $11 for a sixer here where they were around $7 for a sixer in Vegas . I haven't priced swill like Bud Light yet, but The Hubby might finally have to start brewing his own if he wants to maintain his beer habit!

While I was at the store picking up some beer - Wailua Wheat for $10.49 a sixer - I also picked up some cold fried chicken and some mac salad. Dinner for 2 nights! Foodland has pretty good chicken, too. I wanted some cereal but held off buying some. Milk is super expensive here and I would only use it for the cereal - not really worth it. After wandering around, I found some fresh baked muffins and grabbed 2 - one for breakfast tomorrow and one to eat on the way to work Thursday morning.

The walk home from the store was more pleasant that the walk to the other apartment earlier in the day. A layer of clouds had moved in and cooled things off a bit.
Our rural country-like mailboxes

Passing the mailboxes, which remind me of the mailboxes you might find on a rural country road, I decided to check mine for anything good. Score! The mailman delivered my real Hawaii drivers license today. Too bad he can't deliver my dryer or my mattress.

Finishing up the walk home, I finally figured out what the bushes are that can be found everywhere around our complex. Jasmine! The blooms are huge, the largest Jasmine blooms I've ever seen. I love walking by them - so fragrant.

More Weeds episodes in store for tonight.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

T Minus 60 - Taking it slow

Closing one gallery the night before opening another gallery fails to meet my definition of an ideal situation, but I suppose it's not really that bad. Rising and shining around 8:00 this morning, I set my tea to start steeping while I readied myself for work. I poured the tea into my travel mug and headed out for the day.

I still feel less than 100% so I opted for the bus. I stopped on the way to the bus to grab a Sausage McMuffin off the McD's dollar menu to eat while I waited for the bus. I found Amanda at the bus stop, who of course greeted me with a hug, but she mostly wanted to talk about another haole girl she knows who recently returned to her routine after 3 months of maternity leave.  If you know me, you know I just couldn't get into this conversation. I tried, and failed, to be excited about someone having a baby. Just not my thing.

The bus finally saved me from the baby talk and I rode the short way to the Wharf. By the time I reached work, I felt weird - maybe from the meds I've been taking or the shortened sleep last night, or both - but I just took my time doing my thing and getting the gallery opened for business.

Ipo, one of my coworkers, came in around 10:30. We worked together for most of the day but business remained slow. She blamed it on Murphy's Law, thinking that when we schedule for heavy business we get the opposite, and vice versa. After we took our lunch breaks and business still failed to pick up, she suggested I go home. She knew I still felt a bit under the weather, and she hoped that Murphy's Law would work in her favor. Maybe if I went home, she thought, business would pick up and she would get slammed. I headed for the bus stop, hoping she was right and that she would make some money after I was gone.

I thought about stopping at the market on the way home but decided not to. I walked straight home instead. I really wanted some fresh fruit but I didn't feel much like shopping. Maybe tomorrow I'll go to the farmer's market. After making a decent baked potato in my toaster oven tonight, I want to pick up some more potatoes too. The downside to the farmer's market is that I'll have to take the bus up and back. Even if I felt well, I doubt I could walk or ride the bike that far yet. I do need to start shopping up there more, though. I want to eat well and stop buying all this processed crap I've been eating.

Tonight's agenda is more rest and more episodes of Weeds.


Monday, August 12, 2013

T Minus 61: Back to Work

I slept in again. I like sleeping in! After I forced myself to get up, I char-broiled a bagel when I didn't realize I still had the toaster oven set to the highest setting. Into the trash with that one, and into the toaster oven with another. This time, I kept a closer watch and retrieved it just in time for it to be perfectly toasted. I shmeared on some cream cheese and ate it while I watched more Weeds episodes.

Lazing around, texting with The Hubby, relaxing - enjoying my morning had me thinking about working on island time today. Bus schedules can get me to work 30 mins early or 5 mins late. I decided I haven't been working long enough to be pulling off that island time thing, so I hopped the bus that got me to work 30 mins early.

I met a new coworker, Robin, today when I relieved her at the gallery. Imagine this - she's super nice! Unfortunately, she left very shortly after I arrived and I was left on my own to watch paint dry. The Hyatt, where our Ka'anapali gallery is, was hosting an ADP convention. ADP rented every single room in the hotel, which is probably good for the hotel but wasn't so good for us. Hundreds of people walking around in green polo shirts but none of them stopped in to check out the artwork. We managed only 3 sales the entire day.

I bought a newspaper in hopes of clipping some ads and coupons. Sunday papers always have ads and coupons, right? Well, this one didn't. The Hubby and I theorize that you only get the ads and coupons if you get the paper delivered to your home. I wanted to see what I could accomplish on my next grocery trip armed with ads and coupons, especially after watching a couple episodes of Extreme Couponing.

With no ads or coupons to look through, I killed most of my shift at work window shopping and making a wish list of sorts while trying to get acquainted with more of the artists. It helped the time go by a little faster than watching the green polo shirts walk back and forth out in the hallway.

The girl whom I switched shifts with showed up to give me a ride home. Now, I need to get some sleep. I closed the Ka'anapali store tonight. I have to open the Front Street store in the morning.