Saturday, October 5, 2019
Today Denice and I were up at 5:45 a.m. to get ready, finish packing and head out to the airport. After turning in the rental, we were bussed over to the terminal early enough to check in, go through security and get some breakfast at the airport café.
We are flying Hawaiian Airlines to Maui with a 9:03 a.m. departure. Everything is on time and we arrive in Maui at 10:00 a.m. after a very short flight.
Through a suggestion on this workshop's Facebook page, we were hooked up with Maui Limo for the drive from the airport to Lahaina, site of the workshop. The irony is the limo ride was longer than the flight.
The sight of Andrea's workshop is the Best Western Pioneer Inn right on the wharf. When we arrive we are told at 11:00 a.m. we are going to have to wait to check into our room. So, after storing our luggage we set out to discover what Lahaina has to offer.
The view from the hotel's front porch
The town square
Three hours later we had walked along the beachfront, visited a bunch of shops and galleries and stopped for some dim sum at a café in an Asian food court right across the street from the Pioneer Inn.
We took the time for some down time before walking on Front Street to Kimo's Restaurant where we both had the fish. After dinner we walked back to our hotel where our Kentucky art buddies, Marilyn and John Werst had arrived from the mainline. We share some stories before the Wrest left for dinner.
After that, it was back to our room for some TV football, downtime and sleep.
Sunday, October 6, 2019
Today Denice and I slept in before having a hearty breakfast in the Pioneer Inn's diner. At breakfast we had our first sighting of Andrea Matus deMeng, our instructor and her husband and my art mentor, Michael deMeng with the Wersts from Lousiville. It was good to see our friends again.
Then it was off for another tour of Lahaina.
We started with the Courthouse.
We decided to make a quick trip back to our room and ran into Andrea setting up the workroom, which is a very showy room right off the registration desk in the hotel. It has a view of the beach, a view of the pool and everyone will be able to see us work on our art.
Next stop on our Lahania tour was the Chinese museum.
Then it was the Baldwin House before a snack in the Asian food mall.
Back at the hotel, Denise went swimming while I hauled our art supplies to the room. It was nice to talked to Andrea and Sallianne, set up our table and greet Michael and John Werst as the wandered in from their adventures.
Photo by Marilyn Werst
6:00 p.m.meant it was finally time for the Welcome Festivities for Passions of Pele, Sallianne had arranged for a local Hawaiian cultural educator and musician, Wilmont Kamaunu Kahaialii, to open our experience with a conch shell call to attention followed by a blessing by Hawaiian chant. We then greeted each other with the traditional aloha ceremony where we all received a lei and a head-to head greeting.
This was followed by drinks and a buffet dinner in the courtyard of the hotel right outside our workroom. It was a beautiful night with another gorgeous sunset.
For Denice and I, it was back to our rooms to get the rest we need to be ready for Passions of Pele tomorrow morning.
Monday, October 7, 2019
Today we are up and out for breakfast by 7:30 a.m. We met Marilyn and John just a short walk away at the Sunrise Café where we enjoyed table talk during our breakfast.
Andrea's Class Sample
Class started at 9:30 a.m. this morning. Here is the course description for Passions of Peel with Andrea Matus deMeng: "Pele Goddess of Fire and Volcanoes: She who shapes the Sacred Lands. Goddess of Hula, Purveyor of Passion. Pele is both creator and destroyer and one of the most widely recognized deities in Hawaiian mythologies. Now when you think of Hawaii, you are probably picturing a vacation in paradise, and you will definitely have that experience, but, Hawaii also has a rich cultural heritage with fantastical mythologies and traditions over 1500 years old. It is with these mythologies in mind that we are going to take a humble piece of wood and transform it to create a magnificent and ancient looking stone tablet depicting some of these beloved stories with our own twist of course. Combining traditional and contemporary methods we will explore the richly layered world of mixed media collage and assemblage integrating a variety of 2d and 3d methods to create something worthy of the Goddess Pele. One such myth tells of Pele’s Long Sleep and while she dreams and adventures, she discovers hula dancing, gets married, is enraptured, and alas is woken up. We are going to loosely base our tablet on one of Pele’s adventures. Perhaps your tableau will portray something historical, perhaps something personal…the choice is yours."
Andrea Matus deMeng
Denice and my work space in the hotel
For lunch today, we wandered right across the street to the Asian mall for some Thai Tiki Tiki samplers.
Denice with power tools
The whole group went out to dinner tonight at the Paia Fish Restaurant.
Denise and I wandered for a bit, I had some gelato, an art dealer tried to sell us a $42,000 bronze sculpture and we were safe in bed, money intact, to get ready for day two of class.
Tuesday, October 8, 2019
Today Denice and I had breakfast at the Sunrise Café again before a full day of class. Sallianne was nice enough to drive to a restaurant and pick up lunch for us so we could sit on the beach front and eat outside the hotel today.
As a part of our event here, Sallianne had arranged dinner, swim and entertainment at the private Maui residence of her friend. Sallianne drove most of us there in the event van and the drive up into the mountains outside Lahaina was spectacular but does not nearly prepare a person for the view from Susan's back porch.
We were entertained by Wilmont with stories, hula lessons and his songs.
Dinner was a tasty mix of salads, fruits, vegetables and chicken. We even were served ice cream and pineapple for desert.
Safely back at the hotel by 9:00 a.m. we went to sleep knowing that tomorrow is a free day for exploring Maui.
Wednesday, October 9, 2019
This morning Denice and I had breakfast in the hotel before joining a party of van travelers out to see the island with Sallianne, Andrea, Michael, Denise and I in the van and Tara, Steve, Marilyn and John in another car. We left the hotel at 9:00 a.m.
Our first stop was to pick up a dozen folder chairs for tomorrow's adventure. Then it was off to the blow hole.
Next we went to the Ritz Carleton for lunch on the beach.
Michael is convincing Sallianne that if she squints, she will see her homeland
We got back to the hotel around 2:30 p.m. so Marilyn and I went right to the workshop and worked for about 2 1/2 hours.
Marilynn, John, Denice and I made reservations for dinner at Fleetwood, a restaurant owned by Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac. We went over around 5:30 p.m. to get a drink a view the sunset with dinner reservations at 7: 15 p.m. When we got there, we were told there was a table for us but it was next to a wedding party where the bride and groom showed up to much celebration. We moved to the bar. We were there for over three hours, watched the last game of the Nationals/Dodgers playoff and had a three course meal called Go Your Own Way topped off with Rhiannon red wine.
We got back to the hotel but I was too hot and tired to work in the workshop with Tara so Denice and headed off to our air conditioned room.
Thursday, October 10, 2019
Today we ate breakfast in the hotel dining room with just about half the attendees who all wanted one thing: to get into the workshop this morning because we are only in there for three hours.
At 11:30 a.m. the group piled into the "church" van and headed off to the town of Para where we saw sea turtles on the beach.
Then we headed into town for lunch at Flatbread where most of us ate a pizza. Denice and I split the Mopsy and it might be one of the best pizzas I have ever ate.
Next stop was the Makai Glass Maui workshop and store owned by artists Justin Brown and Randy Schaffer. We received a tour from one of the staff and it was cool (really, very hot) to see how the glass is blown.
Denice fell in love with the blue wave so we bought one and had it shipped home.
Because Pele, the inspiration for our piece in Andrea's workshop, is considered to have died on Haleakalā, the extinct volcano, we made a really cold pilgrimage up the mountain to observe sunset from the top. Haleakala is 10,000 feet high and it was cold. Really cold.
The drive down the mountain was fairly uneventful in the dark until we passed through the cow herd who evidently finds the roadside greenery delicious at night. We live in WI and I have never seen this many loose cows on the road. It was like sheep in Ireland.
When we got back to Lahania, Denice and I went across the street to the Thai restaurant with Andrea and Michael deMeng. We had a nice dinner and some table talk before all of us headed to bed because tomorrow is the last full day of class.
Friday, October 11, 2019
Today after breakfast at the Sunrise Café, we had a full day of workshop.
During the lunch hour, Sallianne and I ran out to get the lunch and try to find a FedEx shipper. We got the lunch but failed on the other so we made another trip in the afternoon to a UPS shipper who had boxes, bubble wrap and tape.
Because of weather concerns, our luau was cancelled so the gang gathered in the lobby at 5:20 p.m. to go to Mala. Mary, Karen's friend, had left but Bruce, Jenny's friend arrived, so it still was a full van and table this evening as we celebrated the last full day in the workshop.
After cruising back to the hotel, Denice and I went for a walk amongst the street vendors and music that was occurring in the little square across from our hotel. The Denise, Tara, Jenny and I hit the workshop until 11:00 p.m. getting so detail work done on our pieces.
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Today we ate breakfast in the hotel in order to expedite the time it took to get into the workshop. We know our critique is going to be at 1:00 p.m. today and it is time to finish up our projects.
The morning went well for as I had attached all the parts of my project so they could harden and dry overnight. Andrea helped me with great advice to make my project the best it could be. Denice and I managed to finish our projects and then spend the lunch hour cleaning up our workspace.
The artist critique began promptly at 1:00 p.m. with Andrea leading a critique of each of our projects. Here are some of the results of the week workshop (please view my project in the next blog post).
Denice's magnificent Rebirth
After the critique, Denise and I packed up our two projects and as much stuff as we could into the box from UPS we got yesterday. Then Tara's husband Steve drove, Tara, John and I over to UPS. Off the box went to Milwaukee and my worries about how we would get our projects home were gone.
While Denice swam, I packed my stuff up in our hotel room.
At 4:30 p.m. we all gathered in the lobby to walk to Kimo's Restaurant for our farewell dinner. Our timing was based on the sunset and indeed we had a ringside seat for the sun going down. The dinner was good and the conversation was as well.
Me at Kimo (photo by Andrea)
Denice at Kimo (photo by Andrea)
The whole group walked back from Kimo's on what might have been the best night of weather on our whole trip.
Sunday, October 13, 2019
Denice and I walked around Lahaina today and re-shopped the blocks of galleries, stores and museums that make up this quaint little town.
At 5:00 p.m. our limo picked us up at the Pioneer Hotel for a 45 minute ride to the other side of the island where the airport is.
We were out of paradise at 8:10 p.m. on a United flight to Denver.
Monday, October 14, 2019
At 8:05 a.m. Mountain Time we boarded our flight to Milwaukee from Denver. We arrived in Milwaukee at 11:30 a.m. We cabbed home by 1:00 p.m. where we were greeted by a chorus of screaming cats happy to see us again.
Denice and I want to thank Sallianne and Andrea for a great time on the island of Mauai. We love Hawaii and encourage all to visit this great state.