Thursday, March 31, 2005

dinner out


Z and I just got back from dinner with Myra and Steffi at Dahi’s house (pictured above). It was quite an unusual experience. Dahi has lived many lives, in one of which he was a mineral and crystal dealer/ buyer. Here he is showing us his stones. An interesting and uplifting evening! It never ceases to amaze me how many unique personalities you get to interact with while traveling. It was very generous of him to have us.

Today Z and I were off work – and spent much of the day doing chores and catching up with some online-work. Z is working on a new website for Myra and we spent part of the day taking pictures of the farm to put online.


Although this probably will not make the final cut for the website, I thought some of you might enjoy a picture of the labyrinth’s progression. They were mixing concrete, molding it and setting it all day. They are about a quarter of the way finished. I cannot wait to see the final product. KAG – I am sure that you can have one put in your yard if you really wanted to!

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

power tools are sexy

erin with power saw

Ok – maybe power tools are not THAT sexy on me. Go ahead and have yourself a good laugh. I felt a lot cooler than I looked while sanding away at the walkway.

As you can see z and I had a long day of work today. We are bushed. Among other tasks, I was assigned to use the electric sander to remove the old paint. I was actually very excited to get to use such a fun and noisy tool.

z digging

Z worked on putting up shelves in the carport – more power tools – z got to use the mega drill. Then he got to help dig the labyrinth for the front yard. It promises to look very unusual but fantastic all at the same time.


We just finished some yoga and Z is making us some adzukis and garbanzos for dinner. Life in the fast lane, right KAG?

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

blame it on the rain


It rains sometimes in Hawaii. We have been getting unusual rainfall for spring here. Fortunately the rain comes and goes fairly quickly and on the days we are working outside it is a welcome reprieve from the persistent sunshine. You can see here that the view after the rain is breathtaking.

Z and I worked a seven-hour day yesterday…a whole lot of weeding. Our afternoon yoga session was just the thing our aching backs needed. This farming gig isn’t always a walk in the park!

Today was nice however. Z and I got dropped off at the beach during the afternoon for an hour or two. We then came back and worked a half day – Z sawed and painted signs for the garden and I sanded a wooden walkway in front.

The landscape architect was here today making plans for the labyrinth Myra is installing in the front yard. So far there are only lines spray-painted on the grass but it promises to be quite a sight.

It looks like a bunch of us will be doing a lot of digging tomorrow. We have to dig through the grass and 2 inches into the soil for the length of the labyrinth. Believe me – it is long. Should be a nice workout.

We have been invited to go on a very exclusive tour of the rainforest here on Maui. Myra has a friend who worked for the Nature Conservancy – she has access and invited us. Everyone in the house is going and it promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

recipes and pictures


Regretfully, I have created some confusion surrounding the debut of my second blog that catalogues the food that z and I have been eating here in Maui. I apologize.

Myra Lewin, our host/boss/chef/yoga instructor has been kind enough to allow me to photograph her dishes and post their recipes on my blog. To this end, I have created a second blog – meanderingfood – where I post photos and recipes of the dishes we are eating.

For those of you who have expressed a keen interest in learning more about the kinds of food we have been preparing and eating, as well as some general tips on healthy cooking please do visit meanderingfood .

As always, I welcome your comments here at meanderingtravels as well as meanderingfood . I hope you enjoy reading about it as much as we have enjoyed consuming it!

time for a fresh new look


hello friends and family. I imagine that those of you with heightened powers of observation have noticed that meanderingtravels has a new look and feel. I would very much appreciate your feedback - please comment and let me know what you think.

By the way - z took this shot last night of the almost-full-moon.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

shedding some history

[from Zach Pousman, meandering travels guest editor]

zach stage three  zach stage one  zach stage two

Tonight, I did it. Or more precisely, it was done to me. I had been thinking for a while that I'd cut my flowing locks when I was out in the world traveling. And my housemates (and, interestingly, Erin, too) were only too happy to oblige. Myra bought clippers today. Vanessa, pictured above, did the honors. And erin captured it all on film.

It feels very light, very free, and very nice to be able to feel the windy Maui night nipping at my ears. Myra says that one keeps a lot of their life in their hair, so it's beneficial to change one's hair when one is growing or changing as a person. I hope you all will enjoy the final product as much as I do.

Here's to hoping that South Korea is warm.

zach stage four

better than gold


Thought I would share this magnificant rainbow that appeared earlier this morning in our backyard.

Friday, March 25, 2005

surfing rocks


Everyone, I would like you to meet one of our housemates, Scott. Scott, everyone. Scott just got out of the hot tub after a long day of working hard and paused long enough from devouring the pineapple to pose for us. I needed a picture to post today and Scott was generous enough to oblige.

What could be more interesting than Scott in just a towel???? I caught a wave THIS BIG today!! Z and I went surfing - my first time. It was truly a thing of beauty. I am proud to announce that I got up on my very first wave.

We returned to Lahaina for our surfing escapade. One of our housemates lent us her car so fortunately, we did not have to hitch this time. It was a really great feeling being able to drive around Maui. That is actually such a plus about staying here longer than the average vacation time - being able to really get to know the island and navigate all by our lonesome.

Z and I signed up for a lesson. Although Z has considerable surfing experience, it never hurts to get a lesson. It worked out perfectly as Z and I ended up getting our own instructor - Sam - for the group price. Nice.

After the two hours we were exhausted. Those surfers always make the paddling around on the board look easy. SO *NOT* easy. Ouch. Despite all that mulching and yoga, my arms were quite shocked to be worked so hard and are now limp and pained - the *good* kind of hurt though!

It was a PERFECT first day of surfing. The weather was outstanding and the water gorgeous. Life is good.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

many weeds and more mulch


Today Z and I worked 7 hours. The first 3 or 4 we spent pushing wheelbarrows full of mulch up hill. My hands are throbbing as a result. Pain aside, I must admit there is something very eloquent about working hard in the dirt outdoors. The sweat tastes better than when produced at the gym. mmmmmm. There is a tasty thought for you all to nibble on.

Later today we moved rocks...yes rocks. We built a little rock border around all the mulch we laid. The picture here is of Z's kairn he built with the extras. Leave it to Z to turn a simple stacking chore into a work of art - well an art project at the very least.

Then we returned to the endless and thankless task of pulling weeds. They just never seem to die. Persistent little guys.

Tomorrow we are taking the day off and we hope to go surfing. I am sure there will be some more amusing stories then --- ALTHOUGH REALLLLLLY, I ask you, what could be more *on-the-edge-of-your-seat* than mulch and weeds?

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

blisters and yoga

singing and playing

Last night Scott, Stephi and Brandon broke into song after dinner. Stephi is singing. This home is often such a pleasant place to live.

Today was 6 hours of pretty intense physical labor. Z and I were fighting with Castor Bean vines all day. Some of the roots were as big and burly as tree trunks! Being the city girl that I am, my *delicate* fingers and palms developed multiple blisters through the gloves.

Great - now i am a blistery, burned-to-a-crisp FREAK! All in a day's work. It was actually quite fun. We got to watch one of our housemates, Scott, the resident handyman fix the golf-cart-type vehicle. Apparently he broke off the electric starter, so he had to start it using a piece of rope - similar to starting a lawnmower. Very impressive.

After we retired from the yard for the evening we had a fairly rigorous yoga session with Myra.

Z then made the two of us an excellent meal of lentil soup, tofu, arugula, apple sauce, bagels and muffins.


On a final note - can you believe there are the cutest little pineapples growing in our backyard????!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


erin at beach zach at the beach

it has been a few days since my last post. i thank all my loyal readers (mom, dad, jenny) for checking in anyway and i apologize for the delay.

z and i have been busy working in the garden. yesterday we spent a whole lot of time with the fig trees. we had to re-string the cd's around the entire perimeter and interior as many of them had been blown down by the recent storms.

we then had to take out a few sickly trees and plant healthier ones in their place. plants, like most people enjoy being spoken to and some gentle touching. z and i did our best to encourage these new trees to put down roots. imagine it if you can and have yourself a good laugh.

then we applied this sappy caramel-type substance called "tanglefoot" to the base of the trees. first you wrap the trunk with a band of gauzy material, and then apply tanglefoot to it. the tanglefoot catches the ants coming down the tree and going up and prevent them from wreaking mayhem on the fruits. cleaning up after that task was no easy chore.

beach pic

today z, our housemate stefi, and i went to the beach for the afternoon. unfortunately i was a bit too hurried while applying the sun block and i have burns sporadically all over my body. i look a bit diseased at the moment, but we are all hoping it will pass. i will go collect some aloe from the aloe plants in the yard and slap some of those green sticky leaves on.

that is about it. tonight Myra is giving a talk on sexual energy. i guess she has sensed that there might be some sexual tension/ energy/ hormonal overdrive - as she has 6 twenty-somethings living under her roof, 4 of whom are single. should be a hoot. i will let you know how it goes.

Friday, March 18, 2005

meandering food

Originally uploaded by zpousman.
i know that you all have been LONG awaiting the arrival of meandERING food. if you have an interest in crazy ayurvedic cooking or simply want to see pictures of the food we have been eating then check it out.

hitting the pavement

Originally uploaded by zpousman.

i was too wiped to post yesterday. z and i had a VERY long day of mulching and only had enough energy to eat and crawl into bed afterwards. between yoga and working in the garden, not to mention the crazy organic-hyper-healthy diet, we are certainly getting into good shape.

today was a traveling day. z and i had the day off and headed out early for Lahaina, a town about 40 miles away. as neither z nor i have a car, we hitchhiked our way there.

this ended up being quite an adventure.

in all, we ended up getting 9 rides. 4 out and 5 back. it was a lot, but fun. met a bunch of interesting people.

Lahaina is an old whaling town - dating back to the 1830's. there were a handful of historic sites in town including an old prison, town house and missionary house (the oldest standing home on the island).

z is pictured here in Banyan Tree Park - one tree encompasses the entire park. the tree was massive.

the trip was good, but i am not sure i will be returning anytime soon. it is a pretty far distance to hitch with long and empty stretches in between. great memories though.

i have been hearing from a number of you that you are having problems commenting here. i think i have solved the problem, so feel free to try again. i love hearing from you!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

a whole lot of mulch

Originally uploaded by egerste.
Today z and i are *beat*. we were mulching and laying down cardboard for 5 hours today in the hot sun. in the words of GWB it was *hard work*, but we had a lot of fun too.

Last night was interesting...myra conducted energy healing on all of us and we had a drum circle. it was definitely a new experience. funny the things you do when you don't have tv - (right mom?).

tonight we will probably retire early. we are making pesto using fresh indian basil from the garden. i am famished after all the physical labor!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005


Originally uploaded by egerste.
today z and i had off. we caught a ride with myra down the mountain then z, stephi (one of our housemate's) and i hitched a ride into Pi'ai.

we got picked up by a pick-up truck - the driver waived for us to hop in. here you can see z and stephi in the back of the truck.

once we got to town z and i sheepishly ordered coffee and pancakes as a treat. as you can imagine such items are no where to be found in myra's house and z and i would be too embarrassed to make either here. oh well. it was shameful but entirely satisfying.

then we walked around town for a bit and z covetously drooled over various surfboards. i swear, this one-intersection town has SIX different surf shops. crazy. z got a much needed hat to shade himself from the sun.

we then met up with the gang and went grocery shopping at Mana - the so-called *cheaper* natural foods store. this organic food gig is so NOT cheap. unfortunately it seems to be the only option. even if we wanted to shop elsewhere the surrounding towns have only one grocery store each and they are all organic. c'est la vie.

we then returned to the farm and resumed gardening for a couple of hours before dinner. myra cooked us squash soup with cilantro (a non-irritating spice), toasted dal (look like yellow corn nuts), papadam, spinach and feta wrapped in philo dough.

z and i have decided to start a food blog - due in part to brett's suggestion. we plan to take photo's of the meals myra prepares and identify them and hopefully post the recipes as well. it should be interesting. i will be sure to let you know when it is up and running.

also, i have a greater collection of photos at this way i don't have to post every single picture we take. take a look when you get a chance!

garden pic

Originally uploaded by egerste.
the vegetable garden and some fig trees. we hang cd's from string to scare the birds away. so far i have yet to see any birds!


Originally uploaded by egerste.
This is the view from the back porch of our house.

Monday, March 14, 2005

after a few days on the farm

so our second day here on the farm (saturday) was not quite as exciting as we had hoped. it rained ALL day, which we were told is very unusual. instead of doing work out in the garden we all were assigned "indoor" jobs. z and i spent much of the day cleaning the kitchen cabinets.

part of the work trade deal here includes one meal a day. myra (the boss) makes the meal. so far, despite my somewhat limited palate, i have enjoyed all of them. they are SUPER organic and all veggies. for instance, today we had some sort of hot cereal - quinoa - with raisins, sprouts, apple-type-sauce, papaya (from the garden), and this tasty herbal tea that has to sit for 12 hours before being served. then we had fresh made yogurt that myra brewed last night!

z and i took sunday off and went to the beach with one of our housemates, brandon. he has a car which is crucial since we are about a 20 minute drive from the nearest town. luckily hitch hiking is both legal and safe and is a common form of transportation (we haven't tried it yet, but i will be sure to let you know how it goes). after the beach we visited a small town nearby - Pa'ia. cute, earthy town - natural food store, etc.

today z and i worked a 7 hour day - 7 hours of weeding and laying down cardboard under mulch - apparently it prevents the weeds from getting light and then popping through the mulch. it was actually a lot of fun. there is a magnificent view from all angles - gorgeous mountain tops and exotic plant life. as soon as we get our computer mailed to us (thanks mom) i will be posting pictures like a mad woman. until then, use your imagination.

tomorrow we have off and plan to hitch hike to town and do some grocery shopping. z is furiously looking for a deal on surfboard rentals. if he finds something we might head down to the beach. he is going to teach me...we'll see how well that works out.

Friday, March 11, 2005



We arrived here in Kula this afternoon. mom - you would LOVE it. it is a beautiful home on two acres of gorgeously landscaped land on a mountain (volcano) in maui. it is about a 45 minute drive from the more urban areas and just breathtaking.

we started weeding this afternoon. there are 3 other workers in a similar position as z and i and a personal assistant staying here. living is very clean and environmentally sound. there is a pretty diverse vegetable garden as well as a bunch of fig trees, not to mention the numerous exotic plants and flowers.

there are yoga classes 4 days a week and i think z and i will start tomorrow. we are both very excited about being able to spend 7 weeks here. pictures will follow soon, i promise.

(KAG - we might have you send us my computer and z's phone that we left...)

we have arrived

aloha family and friends! i hope you are all well. z and i arrived in hawaii two days ago. we landed in honolulu and then hopped on a short flight to maui. we arrived around 9pm. it was raining a bit but we arrived in good spirits.

we are staying a town called Wailuku. it is the old city here in maui and definitely the more affordable area of maui. as z put it - "we are staying in the brooklyn of maui." very apt. however, even the brooklyn of maui is incredible! and the hostels offer free trips everyday of the week which travel to the "manhattan-type" areas of maui.

we stayed in the Northshore Hostel our first night. we got a private room our first night which was nice. for those of you who are not familiar with staying in hostels (dad) you have the option of a private or a "dorm" which you share with other travelers.

our first morning here, we took our bags and walked around the corner to the Banana Bungalow for our second night (they only had "dorm" style rooms available. - crazy canadian roommates - fun times). luckily we were able to sign up for the free snorkeling tour leaving from Banana Bungalow at the last minute. this of course was z's idea. however, because we had been planning on spending the day walking around town, we were unprepared for a day on the beach.

nevertheless, z and i jumped on the van - minus swim suits or towels. we were able to work out all the kinks however, and spent the day at a beautiful beach. unfortunately there was not much to see snorkeling because the weather was too choppy. we were able to swim and enjoy the scenary all the same though.

just to spice things up a bit, z enthusiastically hurried into the ocean. unfortunately he forgot about our cell phone he had been carrying in his pocket. although we have been letting it air dry all day and night, we are not very optimistic that the phone will survive. i will keep you posted on any news regarding the phone's recovery.

the highlight of the day was our whale sighting. there were a number of humpback whales breaching off on the horizon. apparently humpback whales hang out around hawaii between December and May. that was pretty crazy.

our "tour guides" were two kids who came here to vacation months ago and never left. the Banana Bungalow offers housing in exchange for work. i.e. house cleaning, reception, and tour guides. the owner of the hostel encourages those who go on the tour to tip the tour guides as they are do not receive any salary from the hostel. it seems that many young and old folks who come to hawaii for a visit end up staying on a more permanent basis. after spending only two days here i can see how tempting that would be.

after our day at the beach we headed over to happy hour at a local bar after which i was exhausted. z and i are trying to adjust our internal clocks, but hawaii is five hours behind ny, and we have been getting sleepy at 10pm and restlessly awake at 5am.

this morning we woke up pretty early (6:45) packed up our stuff and checked out. we then went for a fairly long trek to Iao (pronounced eeee-ow). a long walk up to/ through the mountain valley. breath taking.

this afternoon we will head up to the farm. myra, our new boss/ host will be picking us up here at the banana bungalow in an hour or so. we are excited to meet her and see where will be spending the next seven weeks.

until next time...