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Hanging loose on Little Beach

...wow

sunny 27 °C

Today Teressa and her brother, Steve, took us to a small bay just south of Oneloa Beach (Big Beach) for some snorkeling. The coral and marine life is thriving as we float along the surface, our eyes scanning the ocean floor continuously. It's a sheltered bay, but the surging water still pulls us back and forth above the coral below. After about an hour we have a good chill on and decide to dry off on the warm black lava shoreline.

Julie and I decide to head further south to La Parouse Bay for a short hike on the King's Highway over a'a lava (rough lava flow). This is the site of Maui's last lava flow in 1790. The landscape is scarred from the black lava that started high on the mountain slope to our left. The volcanic eruption left a mile wide barren and desolate section next to the ocean. Huge waves pound the jagged black shoreline dotted with pearl white coral that has been deposited high on the rocky beaches from the high winter surf. We have to turn back without making it to the black sand beach at the end of the trail, since I am squeezing my cheeks and there is an outhouse in the parking lot.

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The afternoon consists of watching boogie and skim boarders hit the massive waves at Big Beach. The sound of waves crashing into this sandy beach is deafening. We were told by Teressa, to wander over the rocky path at the north end of Big Beach to Little Beach for a taste of the carefree beach goers that “hang loose” there. Before heading to Little Beach we have a quick dinner at the car along the highway. While eating, I recognize the huge cacti along the road that make up a forest of prickly monsters. They have small fruit that grows on their appendages. I go to grab one when a voice quickly warns me about the fine prickles that get all over your hands when you touch the fruit (the remedy for a prickled hand is run them through your hair this local man tells me). He is collecting the fruit and also the new tender growth off the cacti to cook up. The large prickles are removed from the new cacti growth and the cacti is boiled or barbequed, yummy? He calls his wife over for a demo on peeling the fruit. She hacks one piece of fruit off the cacti with a large knife, sets it in a crook in the plant, slices down one side of the fruit, and carefully loosens the outer peel, revealing the juicy centre. We chow down on several more fruit and collect a bunch in tinfoil for the coming days. Who knew cacti fruit could be so delicious.

Onto Little Beach for the evening. After climbing up and over the rocks at the end of Big Beach, an oasis is “exposed”. We know what to expect, and the local free spirits don't disappoint. There are people from all walks of life. They are proudly walking and running along the beach, playing bongos and various instruments, surfing and boogie boarding, dancing and laughing. Most people have one thing in common, all buck naked! Not everyone is in their birthday suits of course, but there is a lot dudes hanging out with their wangs out. As the sun sets, more tourists come to see the entertainment. The rhythm of the drums intensifies and various fire spinners and hula hoopers put on an awesome show for the crowd. We pack up and start the trek over the rocks, leaving the crowd cheering on the fire spinning display.

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A stranger chats us up on the path back to the car. He is carrying a heavy plastic bag that contains a huge piece of fruit called Jackfruit. We get back to his car and he promises a taste of “the best fruit he has ever tasted”. Its bigger than a football, has the consistency of calamari, and kinda tastes like juicy fruit gum. Very strange stuff. That concludes a wild day, now that I look back on it. This is Nathan and Julie signing out.

Posted by ontarions 16:25 Archived in USA

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Have you pictures of the fruit? Sound interesting.

by kitwil

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