Why I'm Grateful to be in Hawaii during the Economic Crisis

1. The beach is free.

2. The Queen Emalani Hula festival in Kokee Park (also free) was free. It's also bizarre-- a woman portraying the queen rides in on her horse with her ladies in waiting, sits in a royal tent, and then many hula halaus perform for her, to proxy performing for Queen Emalani. If you came to see some hula, too bad for you. The event seems like a ritual for the dancers-- it's certainly not a performance for the public. It was quite moving to see her ride in and all the halaus run out across the field to meet her.

3. Farmers markets where you can get a small mountain of sweet potato greens, or a bag of big juicy okra, or fresh yellow peppers, or a heap of apple bananas-- for a dollar

4. High energy costs means that we've never used our dryer and instead always can hang out laundry up to get nice and stiff and crispy in the sun.

5. Neighbors are generous: we gave our neighbors a bag of oranges, they came over later with a bag of baby snacks.

6. Wild chickens and pigs are plentiful! Jus go catch 'em!

7. I have an excuse to make all my food from scratch: $2 worth of potatoes makes $15 worth of homemade potato chips! And $4 worth of cream makes $10 worth of The World's Best Ice Cream.

8. It's already so expensive, we don't notice the difference! Really, who's going to quibble when milk goes from 8.99 a gallon to 9.99?

9. Gas is no longer $5 a gallon, but it's still high enough to motivate me to ride my bike everywhere and to make that second car look pretty impossible.

10. Yaay Obama! Our very own Hawaii-born President! I'm not sure how directly that's related, but it sure makes me feel all happy to be in America, in Hawaii.


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