Ken’s Pancake House
Monday and we prepare to leave.
On Monday we toured around the island, visiting more state parks and beaches. It is odd to see black sand that is not tarballs—our Texas beach contains beige colored sand with bits of tar rolled up into balls. Few shells survive the pounding of the waves in Texas and in that respect, Hawaii was no different. Surprising, also, was the smell. Beaches elsewhere smell of seaweed, and fish—here there was no smell. Crabs scuttled around the rocks
I was impressed with the cleanliness of the state. With the exception of white coral grafitti on black lava—the usual ‘Lucy loves Linus 85” and so forth, there was very little roadside litter. Rental jeeps and convertibles (particularly the Europeans) were the worst drivers; everyone else seemed to be quite polite and courteous. With few exceptions, everyone was smiling and time seemed to be magical and at the bidding of the residents; not the cruel taskmaster urging savings and efficiency.
Of course no trip with Weirs would be totally complete without some sort of vehicle trouble. The alternator on Don’s car died leaving us with no headlights and occasional windshield wiper strokes until midway through Hilo when it came to a complete stop. Pouring down rain hampered the diagnostic efforts—but a friend was called, we were given a ride to pick up the other car; jumper cables, a battery, and some other tools. It didn’t take long to move the one car to a church parking lot and then we were back on schedule.
We ate at Ken’s Pancake House, a local ‘tourist must’, having purchased mementos at Longs DrugStore and Hilo Hatties the previous day. Since it had been raining for most of the previous three days, the parking lot resembled a small lake with water over the parking curbs. We snagged the last good spot and took our places around a well-worn formica topped booth. The menu featured dishes in three sizes; regular, large, and Sumo. Whenever a Sumo sized meal is ordered, a bell is rung so the entire restaurant is alerted. These meals are absolutely gargantuan with enough food to feed a family of four with leftovers. The interior of Ken’s is reminiscent of an old home-grown truck stop or eatery featuring breakfast all day. The food was good—and quite plentiful—even at the ‘regular’ size I left half of my food.
Our flight home was uneventful although the plane was so cold inside complete strangers huddled up next to each other. When we arrived at the airport, we discovered that a golf tournament in Katy meant that there were no rental cars available. Son Jimmy arrived to our rescue; and on to another rental car location outside the airport—and then home.