Monday, March 02, 2015

It Was A Kona Kind Of Day

What better way to start your day than with coffee?  Our first stop was Kona, on the Big Island of Hawaii, .  Here's what I found out at the coffee plantation store:

Kona coffee is the only coffee grown in the United States for commercial use.  It's grown on the western slopes of the great of the great volcano mountains Mauna Loa and Haulalai, between the 800 and 2,000 foot elevations.  Only coffee grown in this Kona district of the Big Island of Hawaii can legally be called Kona coffee.  All other coffee grown in Hawaii but outside of this geographical boundary must be sold under other identification names.  The coffee tree takes two years to produce “first fruit,” but four years to reach full maturity and produce a commercial crop.  In one year, one coffee tree will produce only enough fruit to make one pound of roasted coffee, and it takes more than 5 pounds of cherry coffee to make one pound of roasted coffee.  The coffee tree is a member of the gardenia family and coffee is a tropical fruit - coffee beans are the seeds of the fruit.  Royal Kona Coffee is ranked as one of the top three coffees in the world.  More than a billion pounds of coffee are consumed every year in the U.S.A.

After we had several sample cups of coffee and ate a handful of chocolate covered coffee beans, we were flying high on caffeine and off to Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park on the coast of Honaunau Bay.  
 The entire area is built upon the lava flats of the Kona Coast.  It's a beautiful and sacred place with much history.
After we visited the national park, we headed to the St. Benedict's Church in Captain Cook, Hawaii.
St. Benedict's is a Roman Catholic church better known as "The Painted Church" for its hand-painted interior.  
Father Velghe is responsible for painting the interior of this small church.  The panels tell a story and came in handy during a time when many people couldn't read or write.  He was a self-taught artist and did all of the work himself, but when his health started to fail, he was unable to complete the painting.  Read more about its completion here.  
The walls, the altar, the ceiling - all colorfully painted.  
It looks like a regular little church, sitting high on a hill overlooking beautiful Kealakekua Bay.  
But it's unassuming quaint white exterior doesn't at all prepare you for the complete surprise of what you find when you step inside - a rainbow washed ceiling, stripes swirling around support poles, trompe l'oeil at the altar, and wispy colorful palm fronds that really make you feel as if you're on an island.  
A happy place for prayer, shelter, refuge, or quiet reflection.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2014: Award-Winning Plan
2013: Watch Closely Now
2012: Mission Of The Sacred Heart
2011: Vintage Photo And Clothing
2010: Just How I Like It…Cold And Colder
2009: Snagged
2008: The Writing Is On The Wall
2007: Eddie Waits For A Ride
2006: Truckers And Travelers Know Good Food
2005: Sorry, no post on this day. The blog didn’t start until May 2005!

No comments: