Today, the north shore of Kaua’i (which I’ve realized does not precisely rhyme with Hawai’i). We drove to the end of the road — I think it’s charming, in some sense, that except for the Big Island, one cannot drive all the way around any of Oahu, Maui, or Kauai — past which are the film locations for various Hollywood pictures. The cruise ship will navigate along the north shore of the island, after our departure from Nawiliwili Bay here near Lihui tomorrow afternoon at 2p.m., to give first one side of the ship, then the other side, an offshore view of that famous landscape. We would have seen more of it today, had the cloud layer not been so low. Since Kauai’s north shore gets lots of precipitation, I suspect the days when its spectacular landscape is clearly visible are relatively few.

This evening, a lu’au, on an industrial scale — larger than the one we attended a few years ago in Lahaina, on Maui. Perhaps 700 people in a huge warehouse sized open-air structure. The show followed the buffet food, with nothing to begin that explained why we might be eating sweet potatoes and pork — or macaroni salad. The show itself was impressive, with dancing and fire baton-twirling, though the story it told, about a young couple separated by the expansionist ambitions of a tribal elder, but who are eventually reunited on the newly discovered and settled islands of Hawai’i, was as much Hollywood as history.

It’s a story actually as representative of the expansionist urge of the human race as any, including the central future history of science fiction, the expansion into space. Except that their voyages into an unknown sea were probably more daring and dangerous than the 20th century’s carefully calculated, risk-averse missions into space and back.

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