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Richard in Cincy

Wonderful! I love the New York Times...

Veteran Member
5243 posts
Joined: Dec 12, 2005


Posted to Thread #30509 at 12:05 am on Sep 24, 2018

Every Sunday, the big paper is in the drive and I make my pot of Ost Friesen tea with Amber Kluntje (raw German rock sugar) and cream, settle in the solarium with the stereo tuned to Sunday Baroque on NPR (stream it on WGUC 90.9 if your local classical station doesn't carry it) with the lovely Suzanne Bona, a very dear friend of mine and colleague.

And a proper German Frühstuck. This morning was toasted homemade sourdough Bavaran Rye, soft cooked boiled eggs in the egg cups (the yolk must be runny!), Emmentaler, leberwurst, Topfen ( a soft cheese like cream cheese), and garden tomatoes.

The description of the sounds of lava flow are magical. But what I will never forget is the smell. The last time we were in Hawaii, we visited Hawaii for the first time and the Kilauea Volcano had just started erupting. There was a huge fire tube spraying out into the Pacific Ocean. We drove to the end of the road that had been erased from the map in an earlier flow and rented bikes to bike out the 5 miles to the closest viewing area. The lava is indeed like glass. It's sharp and it cuts when it cools and shatters. But that smell! Like nothing I've ever experienced before.

The sad thing is the power of destruction that the lava creates. After our 10 mile bike ride, we drove up the coast on the northeast side of Hawaii and spent an amazing afternoon at the Kapoho Tidal Pools. Again, the knife sharp edges of the lava are intense. I managed to slide off an algae covered broken lava rock to slice my big toe open as I gingerly walked, waded, and swam out to the tidal pools. We walked through a beautiful community of old Hawaii homes. The gardens filled with pineapple, guava, avocado, lemons, limes, banana and all sorts of wonderful exotic tropical plants. There were pools, waterfalls, and beautiful flowers in bloom. I remarked to Tim that this is paradise and I could live here.

Now? The Kilauea eruption has totally overrun this beautiful area. The homes and gardens are now buried in lava, and the lava has filled in the tidal pools.

What is a tidal pool? It was a shallow reef of lava, the bay protected by the cooled lava flows and the shallow water inside the reef. But the beauty was just below the surface. Old lava tubes were in the midst of the shallow waters and you could plunge down 30 feet into one of them if you weren't paying attention. But the most amazing part was sliding into one of the tubes with snorkel. Suddenly you were in a tropical aquarium, with fish of every color. Brilliant Blues, yellow, red, pink, orange, and purple. Striped, spotted, and brilliant one color. I spent the afternoon submerging myself in one of these pools, breathing through my snorkel, marveling at the audacious colors. As I sat still, the fish began swimming around me. Total enchantment. And isn't the sound of your breathing through a snorkel the most mezmerizing and calming sound?

And now. It is gone. Filled in this summer with the Kilauea eruption. Never to be seen again. But others will emerge.

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