Archive for November, 2006

And now an outsiders view of Hawaii


Originally uploaded by Jeffery Simpson.

One of the great things about Metroblogging sites is the ability to read about a city, or in this case a state, by the people who live there. If you want to find out about life in Vancouver you head over to Metroblogging Vancouver [mbv] where I’m a blogger. Twenty-four hours ago I slipped on a patch of ice while walking home and landed on my back. My Christmas shopping ended up spread across the sidewalk and my cell phone went skidding into a snow bank.

It was time to get out of Canada and head somewhere warm. So now I’m in Hawaii, Maui to be exact, and I’ll be here for a bit, and blogging too. So for the next while in addition to the usual insiders guide to the islands you’ll be getting the annoying Canadian tourist’s view too, thankfully at no extra charge.

Vancouver and Hawaii share a lot of things. We both had Captain George Vancouver claiming things for Britain [wp]. We both slapped the union jack into our state/province flags. And for years Vancouverites, and other Canadians, have been coming to Hawaii and acting like tools. Our Premier Gordon Campbell got arrested for drunk driving while in Maui in 2003 (picture at the top of this post). We’re sorry about that. He’s a tool.

Over the next week or so I’ll be doing some blogging, depending on my internet access. Hopefully I’m not too out of the loop, and you enjoy some of it. Thanks for having me Hawaii, it’s certainly much better than laying on ice wondering if I’d ever be able to stand again.

Hawaii Kai’s Christmas Parade

The annual Hawaii Kai Christmas Parade sponsored by the Hawaii Kai Lions Club featured a bevy of bands, beauty queens, community marchers, decorated vehicles and politicans. The parade was held under “sunnily hot” and clear skies as it meandered down Lunalilo Home Road toward the Koko Marina Shopping Center. I managed to capture some of the moments with the photos posted here and to my BuzzNet site. Enjoy!

Select these thumbnails to see more than 22 photos at my BuzzNet site.

I Flew “Go!”

I flew on Go!, Hawaii’s new discount air carrier for the first time yesterday on a flight from Hilo back to Honolulu. Go! caused quite a commotion in the interisland airline industry when it entered the market this past June offering discount airfares at $39 one-way between any island. This undercut the previous low by the incumbent airlines, Aloha, Hawaiian and Island Air by $40, which of course they had to match.

Since then the ongoing fare war has brought fares to all time lows of $19 and $29 in recent weeks and months, all triggered by Go! The airline is owned and operated by Mesa Airlines and have been accused by the incumbent carriers of using predatory pricing to drive one of them out of the market.

While the airlines squabble in the interisland market over pricing, the consumer and interisland traveller is the winner. Many people who have shunned interisland travel due to high prices since 9-11-2001 have slowly come back to do more travelling this year than in recent memory. I for one have made more trips to visit family on the Big Island of Hawaii since the fare war began.

Yesterday was my first flight on Go! The flight was pleasant like any other interisland jet trip. The service was good, though you had to buy your drink instead of getting a complimentary juice like they do on Hawaiian and Aloha. Despite that, my flight was smooth and my checked-in bag was not lost and was reunited with me shortly after we deplaned in Honolulu.

Anyone considering flying interisland should take advantage of the current discount prices and at least give Go! a try.

More photos:

Moderate Earthquake Hits Hawaii Today


The Big Island was hit by another moderate to strong earthquake today. Initial reports show that the trembler, located near the same place as the one on October 15 registered at 5.0 on the Richter Scale.

I am spending most of this Thanksgiving week on the Big Island of Hawaii, staying at my folks place in Honokaa. We definitely felt the earthquake this morning. It was a long rolling one which to me felt like a magnitude 4 shake. The house shook for about 35 seconds. The noise an earthquake makes is quite eerie as the house creeks and vibrates.

I was on the phone this morning talking to my friend in Hilo for about 40 minutes when the quake hit. I told him we’re having an earthquake. For about 25 seconds I kept on asking whether or not he was feeling it. Negative was his reply until the quake was nearly over here. Then he reported the shaking over the phone.

I guess it is the norm for a rolling quake that is centered on the other side of the island to “slowly” make its presence known on the other side of the island. If the quake was centered in the usual Volcano area, he would certainly have felt it first before we did 40 miles north of Hilo in Honokaa.

So far no major damage is reported, but some landslides may have occurred along the Hamakua Coast according to sketchy transmissions that I am getting on an emergency scanner that we have here.

In 1975 on Thanksgiving weekend, Hawaii was hit by an earthquake of 7.2 centered south of the Volcano area on the Big Island. Last month we were hit by a 6.7 earthquake that was felt statewide (see earlier posts).

Additional Links:

Graphic above taken from USGS website on recent earthquakes in Hawaii.

Earthquake – 5 Weeks Later


Finally made it to the Big Island this week for a short Thanksgiving visit with my family. Flew into Hilo on Tuesday, drove up the Hamakua Coast to Honokaa.

After talking to my mom, it was learned that people on the Hilo side did not get the severe impact of the October 15 earthquake that others on the West side of the island did.

Driving over, I did not notice much damage along Highway 19 except for the collapsed portion of a small bridge outside of Kukuiau and Pauuilo. That bridge is now only passable one lane at a time. The state has set up a temporary traffic light to regulate vehicles. Hopefully a permanent fix is coming soon.

Femme Fatal

femme fatalFrom a recent photo shoot in Chinatown Honolulu, HI

Metro Blogging Shirts….Be cool too.

Get yours here!

Honolulu Underground!

Forget the Monorail, forget the Superferry, Honolulu’s got a new Underground!
courtesy of LOST.

On Street Parking in Jeopardy

One of the most precious commodities in Honolulu and any other city is the availability of on-street parking. On-street parking in residential neighborhoods and business areas benefit all. Small businesses depend on the availability of on-street parking as part of their business plans, especially those located in buildings with no on-site parking.

A new City Charter amendment mandating that the City Transportation Department adopt a sweeping “pedestrian and bicycle friendly” stance into all planning is a bad idea. Most people like pedestrian and bicycle friendly neighborhoods and that is fine. However this should mandate should not be made as part of our city charter. Instead planning for pedestrian and bicycle access should be made on a case-by-case basis as it is now.

City Charter Amendment #8 should be defeated. Vote “no”.

Kelley O’Neil’s

I don’t really write at Hawaii Metroblog any more, but since I accidentally posted this on MySpace as “Friends Only,” I figured I would post it here for non-MySpace users to read. Here you go guys.

I called up Ingu & asked him, “So, if we are going to see a classic rock gig, then would it be a major faux pas if I wore an Alice In Chains hat? I am having a major bad hair day.” And Ingu said it should be fine. So off I went.


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