A New Life! Retirement at its Best 41

HAWAI’I  A 3.0 earthquake under Kilauea Volcano on April 15, 2018 was quickly followed by five more on the same day. Heavier quakes shook the southern part of the Big Island in the ensuing days, until on May 4 a fissure opened up in the area near Leilani Estates, followed by more and more fissures, spewing smoke and lava to blacken the sky and covering everything in it’s slow moving path, crossing roads and homes, trees and cars, slowly moving down to the ocean. We have all been able to watch the eruption of Kilauea, still going on today. Actually, the eruption itself started in 1983, fountaining, followed by years of flowing lava, dangerous gases and small earthquakes.

We lived on the Big Island for twelve years, 9 miles north of Hilo. We never witnessed a close-up of a fountain, but frequently took guests to the Caldera and down the Chain of Craters Road, from where we could take a good look at the lava flowing down from the Pali (cliff) and could feel the enormous heat while we were taking pictures.

During the current wrath of Pele I have kept in touch with 4 sets of friends who live on the east side and north side of the island. They have all assured us that Kilauea’s terror is more raging in the south and they are not in danger. They can hardly believe that the gases can get to 10,000 feet into the air, but most of the bad vog goes to the Kona side. Another friend, whose mother lives on the Kona side assured her that it is not as bad as they say it is. However, for the people living in the Leilani Estate area, and Kapoho, and Pahoa, the people who have lost their home, it is a disaster. Because with the lava enveloping everything they have also lost their land – you can’t build on lava. Insurance is hard to get; those who have it must be pretty affluent, but those living in the affected area definitely are not.

A month ago I tried to get a hold of friends living in the Pahoa area. I knew they had listed their home for sale but had not heard from them since Christmas. The phone number was discontinued, I could not find the listing of their home anymore, but finally, my email reached them. They had just arrived in Berkeley, with her family, and would go to Vermont to be with his family the next day. The earthquakes had started in early April; Escrow closed on April 30th and they made it out to Waimea in the north for an overnight while the fissures started cracking the roads open.

Just this week we got an email that they will be the proud owners of a house in Fairfield Iowa, close to everything (they don’t have a car but she bought a bike) so they can walk everywhere and start a new life. Winters will be cold for them, but it’s better to be freezing than to burn up! Fairfield has a University, like Hilo, and they are already planning to plant fruits and vegetables, like they had in Hawai’i. We think it’s a miracle that the sale of their home went through and hope it will stay out of the danger zone.

Considering Mike’s asthma (which he got from that same Kilauea), we are glad we are not living on the Big Island anymore. Although our home’s new owner in Onomea, who has a bed and breakfast there, assured us that Hilo side is safe and tourists keep coming (with a little education on what is happening). Hey, here’s a thought. If you want a very exciting vacation, go to the Big Island, Hilo side, make reservations for staying in our former Onomea house (the original carport has been refurbished and turned into a beautiful studio) and witness the excruciating labor pains of the birth of new land. The continually descending lava, flowing into the ocean and hardening, is creating land, attached to the Big Island and many thousands of years from now, people will be able to live on that land.

For those of you who have my book Rising from the Shadow of the Sun, you may want to read again my story of one eruption, describing the wrath of Pele, Goddess of the Volcano, and the lunar rainbow I watched later that night driving up the chain of Craters Road (Pages 329 and 330). My dad, during the war, witnessed such a Lunar Rainbow when he was stationed on the Cocos Islands. Has any of you, my friends, ever seen one? I would love to know when and where that was. Just leave me a note on the Contact Form below this Post. Lunar rainbows do occur, but only under certain weather conditions, such as a full moon and a misty rain.

Another active volcano is creating underwater activity: Lōʻihi (also known as Lōihi Seamount) is an active submarine volcano about 35 km (22 mi) off the southeast coast of the island of Hawaii.[6] The top of the seamount is about 975 m (3,000 ft) below sea level. This seamount is on the flank of Mauna Loa, the largest shield volcano on Earth. Lōihi, meaning “long” in Hawaiian, is the newest volcano in the Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain, a string of volcanoes that stretches over 5,800 km (3,600 mi) northwest of Lōʻihi. Unlike most active volcanoes in the Pacific Ocean that make up the active plate margins on the Pacific Ring of Fire, Lōʻihi and the other volcanoes of the Hawaiian-Emperor seamount chain are hotspot volcanoes and formed well away from the nearest plate boundary. Volcanoes in the Hawaiian Islands arise from the Hawaii hotspot, and as the youngest volcano in the chain, Lōihi is the only Hawaiian volcano in the deep submarine preshield stage of development.

Lōihi began forming around 400,000 years ago and is expected to begin emerging above sea level about 10,000–100,000 years from now. At its summit, Lōʻihi Seamount stands more than 3,000 m (10,000 ft) above the seafloor, making it taller than Mount St. Helens was before its catastrophic 1980 eruption. A diverse microbial community resides around Lōihi’s many hydrothermal vents.

I copied this information from the internet because there are so many interesting clickable links to explore! And then, just for fun, there is a wonderful YouTube video of about 6 minutes called LAVA. I loved it, and hope you will too. check it out!

It’s a Wonderful Life!

Until Next Time!


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