Well I am back in Maui for the John Friend/Ram Dass workshop on the Bhagavad Gita with my yoga sister Sjanie McInnis. We arrived after a long day/night/day to our little cottage in Haiku and spent the afternoon exploring the wonders of Mana foods in Paia and having an evening swim at a local beach as we watched the sun go down. Not bad for day one. Day two started off with the most amazing oatmeal-coconut porridge from Sjanie- inspired by this months Yoga Journal (Oct/09) and taken to a new level of scrumptious by adding cardamom and fresh young ginger.
The deal is Sjanie cooks and I drive- which if you know us is the wisest split of duties you can get. Today I got off light though as Sjanie still cooked but Geordie Milne drove- another friend and yoga teacher from Vancouver. He has been here two weeks already and was desperate to show us all his discoverys on the South-east side of Maui aka the road to Hana.
We began our journey by driving up to Kula and then followed the road- sometimes lack of it- all the way to Hana. I knew some people drove that way but I thought the road had been damaged during the earthquake a few years ago but it was actually in pretty good shape. I recommend a sturdy vehicle and a driver with a sense of mountain driving though. It is not for the faint of heart. Flatlanders be warned!
Our first stop was the Laulima Farms. this place was incredible. For all of you that are interested in sustainable farming and organic food this will be an inspiration. We were cheerily greeted by Beth and quickly ordered fresh coffee with coconut milk. The coffee beans are grown and roasted right there along with the coconut milk. It was delicious!! Sjanie bought a key lime popsicle ( $2) which was raw, creamy from coconut milk and to die for. Geordie’s banana bread was pretty darn good too. We wandered through the farm a little but if you meet at the fruit stand at 2pm on Saturdays you can take a guided tour of the kitchen and upper gardens. We stopped to talk to Jenn who worked in the kitchen and she told us about the community lunch she was preparing and it sounded heavenly. It is a kabutz of sorts and everyone there seemed pretty happy to be there. It was inspiring to say the least.
It was hot on the hill and we needed a little moisture so our next stop was the O’heo Gulch waterfall pools- known more commonly as the 7 sacred pools. Sjanie and I were in the water so fast. So many people came to see them but we were some of the only ones in the water. Of course the scenery begged for some yoga poses on rocks etc so I have a few here and the ones of Sjanie you will have to look for on her blog.
From there we drove a little further down the road and hiked into the Venus pool. Now that was really crazy~ it was salty and buoyant and had a little island in the center. The rock was so hot I burnt my feet and I couldn’t get into the water fast enough. I could spend the whole day there floating around. Some guys were jumping off cliffs but frankly I am not that brave …or stupid. Great when you are 20 not so great at 40……
We had our lunch at the Hana Hotel but missed actual lunch and had pupu’s- snacks and stuff. Expensive but tasty. Sjanie had a great wheat beer with lilikoi in it and I think we may have to go search it out. We drove the rest of the windy road back with a stop in a bamboo forest that reminded me of Crouching Tiger and then set foot right back to our little cottage on the beginning of the Hana Highway. We started at 8:30 that morning and got back at 5:30 so it was a full day but not rushed.
It was so great to see this part of Maui that we had never ventured to. Now that my kids are a little older they can maybe handle the drive and there are some spots that are really unique and worth the effort so I plan to get out there again~ especially for the Laulima Farm coffee and popsicles!