Travels |


The main street of Makawao on the North Shore of Maui in Hawaii. (MEH)

It’s the offseason and everyone in Aspen will be taking off for destinations afar.This column will be catching up on recent travelers.I’m just back from two weeks in Hawaii, on Oahu and on Maui. When visiting with my daughter, Bates, on the North Shore of Maui, I felt like I was back in the 1960s. There are little villages that are just crossroads with little shops and houses, and the streets are filled with hippie kids in their hippie clothes. No wonder so many Aspenites who lived in Aspen during the 1960s and 1970s have moved to the North Shore. The South Shore is just like Waikiki on Oahu, with high-rise hotels and shopping malls. Bates lives on an experimental bamboo farm and is doing a lot of artwork for the bamboo houses that are built on the property. The little villages of Makawao and Paia, where we shopped and ate dinner, are nearby.

On Oahu, in Waikiki I stayed in a hotel called The Breakers that is a little diamond amidst a sea of high-rises. It has a lovely garden with banana trees, fan trees and palm trees and is only two stories high. One day I hiked up to Makiki Heights for a visit to the Contemporary Art Museum, located in a huge plantation-type estate with the most fantastic gardens and paths and stairways through a gully filled with jungle flowers. While on Oahu we visited our son and his family, Clayton and Donna Hayes and twins Reid and David. We talked via the Internet with Paul Hayes, who is a freshman studying architecture at Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. I couldn’t believe this high-tech conversation – when I was in the fifth grade, my class in Geneseo, N.Y., worked all year raising money staging bake sales, giving spaghetti dinners and selling magazines so we could charter a bus and go the1939 New York World’s Fair. We stayed at Columbia University and not only went to the Fair but also climbed up the Statue of Liberty and went to the top of the Empire State Building. At the Fair, they displayed things of the future, which included interstate highways, television and telephones that also had a TV screen so you could see the person you were talking to. All of us kids were flabbergasted and said, “No way will that every happen!”

At the end of the ski season, Friends of Chamonix, members of the Aspen French Sister City, spent a week in Aspen and Christine Aubale Gerschel and Peter Dahl entertained at a luncheon at their Aspen home. Christine had met Jacques Tomei, the Chamonix Sister City president, 20 years ago through Robbie Albouy, who was originally from Chamonix. Chamonix and Aspen just celebrated their 20th Sister City Anniversary.In the fall, Jack Crawford and Helga Matuska led a group of Aspenites on a two-week European vacation. They celebrated Oktoberfest in Munich, joining 4,000 other revelers in the huge Hofbrau tent, singing and dancing on the tables to an oompah band. Then they boarded the luxurious Danube Princess for a four-country cruise on the Danube River. They stopped at quaint villages with overnights in Budapest and Vienna, where Viennese Aspenites Kurt and Anne Duldner met them and hosted dinner at Kurt’s favorite restaurant, built in 1746. Some of the party went on to Prague while others went to Berlin, dining in the modern glass dome built on top of the 1884 Reichstag (Parliament). The Aspenites on the European jaunt included John Provine and Catherine-Ann Couch, Greg and Billie (Pierce) Erwin, Jack and Mary Cronin, Don Crawford, and Margaret Bauer, Sissy Erickson, Stan Starn, Sandra Murray, Richard Auhll and Elayne Rossi, Jack Leeney and Janine Sevigny, Paul and Joany Deutz, and Charlie and Eleanor Skipsey.This past week there were writeups in Time, Newsweek and the Readers Digest magazines about the new biography of Albert Einstein written by Walter Isaacson, president of the Aspen Institute and former longtime editor of Time. The best article about the biography was in Time and was written by Isaacson. The book includes a section about Einstein’s perception of religion and God. Quoting from the article, “Einstein did have a profound faith in, and reverence for, the harmony and beauty of what he called the mind of God as it was expressed in the creation of the universe and its laws.”There is a new magazine titled “Cottages & Bungalows,” which has just published its second issue, Spring 2007. I had written to them when the first issue came out during the winter, and they wrote back such a nice letter (saying they are not ready yet to do subscriptions) that I sent them a copy of my cookbook “Aspen Potpourri.” They surprised me, for in this spring issue they have included a photograph of the Hayes’ Victorian cottage in Aspen (which appears on the cover of the book).Undercurrent … Because the Aspen airport is closed, I flew home from Hawaii through Denver to Eagle-Vail. Half of the people on the plane were Aspenites.

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