Tropical Storm Flossie Approaches Hilo, Hawaii

Aloha

I tend to talk about the places that we have visited when they surface in the national news. I never realize how many places that we have had the opportunity to visit in such a short period of time until I look back at the blog posts from my past and realize that I have only talked about Hawaii a few times. My favorite spot of all the islands is Hilo on the Big Island. It’s a bit more small town, even though it is the biggest city on the island and the residents certainly have island speed down. Things happen there, just not in too much of a hurry.

The Big Island is an exciting place. If it’s not enough to have to worry about the possibility of a Kīlauea going off and your home being covered in molten lava, they also have tropical storms, tidal waves and tsunami’s to worry about. But that’s really nothing for Pele to be concerned about. We’ve had the oporunity to travel up the mountain to the Volcano craters to see the plumes of steam rising up from the depths below the surface.

Volcano National Park Hawaii
Volcano National Park Hawaii

At Volcano National Park, situated up the mountain about 30 miles from downtown Hilo, you can learn all about the historical significance and the future potential of explosions.


View Larger Map

We’ve never had the opportunity to hike all the way to the flowing hot lava river at the end of Highway 130 at Kalapana. There is also an amazing looking hike across the crater bed that looked killer. We ended up visiting the Jagger Museum, the Visitors Center, the Lava Tubes and the overlook area for the Mauna Ulu Trail.

Lava Tubes Hilo Volcano National Park Hawaii
Lava Tubes Hilo Volcano National Park Hawaii
Lava Tubes Hawaii Big Island
Lava Tubes Hawaii Big Island

But, what does the Volcano National Park have to do with Tropical Storm Flossie? Location, location, location. As all the national weather channels rush to get their anchors to scoop the latest story. Out across the vast Pacific Ocean, through the wind and rain, I hope that our friends who live on the Big Island in Hilo are safe and the storm blows itself out well before it ever hits the Hawaiin Islands.

Mahalo

What to do in Detroit according to Google Maps

Well worth a look see! Our friends at Google Maps made a great little overview of a few things you can do while visiting the Motor City. They cover many areas that I have also talked about on other blogs and visit whenever I’m in the D. Check out the Comerica Park, People Mover, St. Andrew’s, Greektown and Showtime Detroit references. Not to mention the amazing skyline shot that ends the entire 58 seconds.

Great job Google!

Adopting the Detroit Tigers:
A Miami Girl P.O.V.

As I mentioned in earlier postings, our friend and acupuncturist from ships, Coco came to visit us in Michigan this past June. We had a rip roaring time doing all the great tourist activities Michigan has to offer. I think we left our story off with Coco last at Mackinac Island. Well, while she was around, we also spent the two different days goofing off in Downtown Detroit. One day, we did Campus Martius and Hart Plaza, which is a story we’ll get into later in the week. The other evening downtown, we kidnapped my cousin Danny and hit the city sporting our Detroit Tigers garb and ready to play ball. (Or atleast watch some really amazing professional guys play baseball.)

As we were getting ready to leave the house, I looked at Coco and decided that she didn’t quite look like she would fit in… So I looked through my drawers and found an extra Detroit Tigers T-shirt. Of course I have several of them in various styles. I found one that fit her perfect and off we went. The taxi picked us all up at my house. It only takes about 25-30 minutes to get to and from the ball park from my house. When they dropped us off downtown at the Hard Rock Cafe, we popped in and had a little glass of wine before heading over to my favorite spot to buy peanuts in front of the old Methodist Church on Woodward. I think the bags are like 3 for $5 or something pretty insignificant in comparison to the prices in the park. All the money goes to the church, so you’re also helping support a Godly institution. They also have cajun peanuts, which they do not offer in the park. Those really give a kick in the pants when you’re sitting munching on them in the seats.

Melissa and Coco Tigers Fans at Comerica Park
Melissa and Coco Tigers Fans at Comerica Park

We had to stop in front of the giant Tiger sculpture in front of the main gates so that we could pose for some tough chick tourist photos.

Pure Detroit Michigan
Pure Detroit Michigan

Once in the park, we grabbed a beer, found our seats and sat down just in time for the National Anthem. It’s my tradition. If I am going to any sporting event, I have to be there before the National Anthem. I just love the song. Even a bad rendition of it is still good to me. Funny, but I guess it’s the singer in me that just has to hear it.

At the Tigers Game
At the Tigers Game

About 5 innings into the game, we got a little restless. It wasn’t going particularly well for the home team and the game was a bit slow. Verlander wasn’t pitching as well as I’ve seen him in the past and the Tigers were down a few runs. We decided to take a stroll around Comerica Park to check out the statues of the icons of Detroit Tiger baseball. The Park itself has all kinds of memorabilia and facts posted in the pillars surrounding the stadium. I don’t really know how early before the game they open, but you could spend hours checking out every exhibit. They also have a carousel that is comprised entirely of orange Tigers. There is also a ferris wheel where the cars are formed in the shape of baseballs. This park has all kinds of food beyond your typical hot dog, but we passed on the stadium classics in favor of heading a couple blocks away to Cliff Bells.

Cliff Bells Detroit
Cliff Bells Detroit

The only sad thing about the game was that our favorite hometown Detroit Tigers lost. But according to Coco, “I’ve never felt more American then the day I went with ya’ll to the Tigers game and to Cliff Bells!”

Wyland in the Detroit Skyline
Wyland in the Detroit Skyline

Lastly, if you’re ever coming to visit Comerica Park, look into sitting along the third base line. The seats have a great view of the expanse of the ballpark and city skyline. There is a huge humpback whale mural by the famous painter Wyland. Did you know that Wyland, the guy who paints all those whale murals on buildings in cities from San Diego, Miam, San Francisco, Honolulu, etc is actually from a suburb of Detroit? I believe that he is from either Rochester or Rochester Hills – like another very famous female singer, Madonna. Ha, but that’s a subject for another article… All the famous people from little old Michigan.

Hot August Nights & Cool Mini Cooper Rally’s

On August 3, the Guiness Book of World Recods descends on Northern Michigan. That’s right folks, if you drive a Mini Cooper and can make it up to the Mackinac Bridge, the connecting point for the 5 miles between the Lower and Upper Penninsula’s where Lake Huron and Michigan meet, you too can become a part of the largest parade of Mini’s ever assembled.

The Mackinac Bridge "Mighty Mac"

New world record attempt Aug. 3 at Mackinac Bridge

June 11, 2013 — The Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) will join MINI of Grand Rapids and owners of Mini Cooper automobiles from all over the country as they rally and attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the largest parade of MINIs. The MINI rally will take place on Saturday, Aug. 3, and will culminate with a mass crossing of the Mackinac Bridge, the world’s third-longest suspension bridge.
“We gladly support this attempt at a new world record highlighting Michigan’s iconic Mackinac Bridge,” said MBA Administrator Bob Sweeney. “We will do whatever we can to make their crossing safe, secure, and memorable – as they attempt to break the Guinness World Record.”

The current world record for the most Mini Coopers in a parade is 1,450. The MBA and event planners encourage all MINI owners to use social media and other methods to spread the word. More information is available online on the MINI of Grand Rapids Facebook page: www.facebook.com/events/521093454613906/.

Contact: Bob Felt, MDOT Office of Communications,
feltb@michigan.gov
989-731-5090
Agency: Transportation

It just so happens that 7 Million Jigawatt’s own, Melissa Behring and Jake Tobias own a Mini Cooper. Little Lolita is going to have a chance to help break a Guiness World Record for the Largest Parade of MINI Cars at MINI on the Mack. It’s acutally a record for the most Mini’s on a suspension bridge, but who needs to get technical.

Little Lolita
Little Lolita