LAHAINA 1

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The famous
Banyan Tree of Lahaina.

      At first glance one would think this is a small "forest" of trees.  At the very least a grove.  But a little research reveals the following:  The sheriff of Lahaina, in the early 1870's, brought this from India, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the town's Protestant missionaries.  When planted it stood a proud eight feet tall; now it stands some 60 feet high.  Today, it has many secondary trunks and is also offered much needed artificial support.  After all, it covers two-thirds of an acre of land.  Impressive for a tree that is just a little over a century old!  Wonder what the next hundred years will turn it into?

    Lahaina was one of the famous old ports in Maui; and was the capital of the old Hawaiian kingdom from 1820-1845.  In the 1800's it became a whaling center known the world around.  By the 1850's whale oil had become a less commercial export.  But at its peak the town was a whale of a bustling center and attracted over 400 ships yearly to its harbor.
    Of course, during these wild times, there were plenty of attractions to keep the whalers happy spending their fast earned bucks.  Probably many a lucky lad emptied his wallet into the soft, warm hands of a lovely lady in leis.  And, of course, there were plenty of bars to offer up delicious drinks for all concerned.
    [I read, somewhere, that before the rabid missionary purists came along to clean up Hawaii of its sin centers, it was quite a wild place.  Considering all those whalers, and ladies in grass hula skirts, no wonder these ports were popular places for buyer and seller alike.  Many a saloon served up the rum de dum dum; and ladies in waiting to offer "romantic" treats to enjoy--for the right price, natch.]
    Today there are plenty of drinkin' and eatin' establishments spread generously throughout the town.
 
 

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

And here's, probably, what isn't one of those famous bars.

 I have no idea what it was, but  it looked interesting to me.
 
 

The famous
"Pig In A Poke"?
I doubt it!

     I took several pictures of this colorful show biz "ham" that am. I had just parked the car and we were heading for the beach front, so we could go whale watching.  I saw this pig eatin' away at the front entrance to this establishment.  Brigitte started up what apparently was a meaningful communication with this porky-pet.
    Brigitte found a picture of this pig in a book on Maui.  So, this must be a very famous pig.  Though, to be truthful, it was more interested in cleaning up the floor than carrying on much of a conversation or showing off any classy status.
    If you'll note, somebody had put a lei around its neck.  Wonder what ancient Hawiians would have thought, since the lei has religious roots.  Now it is more commonly used as a friendly greeting, and tossed over the heads of new visitors to the islands.
    Leis, originally, were considered gifts from the gods, used as ornamentation and as part of the costumes of native dancers who entertained both rich and poor with their seductive undulations.
    Call it dance, call it art, call it what you will, these dances were a form of blatant fertility rites. (So my mind claims in small print!)
 
 

And talking about the rich and famous:
 

"H  e   r    e    '     s   .   .   .
HILO HATTIE!"

Shopping Department store!

    Does anybody remember the original Hilo Hattie?
    Well, maybe some of you don't.
    She was a pretty famous early TV personality and comic entertainer.  Made her fast buck in show-biz and then opened up a chain of mass marketing stores in Hawaii--which seemed, to me, like a pricey K-Mart.
     We thought their prices were a bit below the famous Hawaiian Pricey and a bit above Maui Super Deals.  So we got our free shell Lei's (Brigitte's wearing it around her neck) which they handed out to all walk-in folks.  After a quick look around, we took a few pictures and split the joint.
 
 

Shopping & Posing!

   There many other interesting places to see.   Though we, oddly enough, didn't exhaustively search through all the shops and streets.  Wish we'd been able to check out all the art galleries, eateries and shops shops shops.  Of course they do begin to look pretty much alike--Hawaiian shirts and costly trinkets.

   
 
 

The Hard Rock Cafe?  And some Russian religious influence?
   
Don't ask me: I'm no fan of either "tradition"!

On the other hand!

Some Maui Gods and Goddess?
   
This was one way to relax and rest up.

But then there were other manners of entertainment, too.

Wanna see a movie?

Hawaiian-style?

    Films are fine, if you have nothing better to do.  Actually, I used to like going to movies in strange towns.  But we had so little time and so much to see.  How about, instead, doing a bit more exploring of this famous Maui town?
 
 

To continue click on

The Maui Man.



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