By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 5/27/2020
Topics/Keywords: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 237
Hunkering down in paradise.

Was it a Chinese plot? Was the Illuminati behind it? Did utterly incompetent leadership make it worse? The answers to these questions are irrelevant, because we've got it, it's here, and the population of the Earth is spending a few weeks or months or years "hunkering down", isolating ourselves to slow the spread of the new coronavirus, COVID-19.

In my case, the closing down of Corporation Earth coincided with a long-planned move to remote property on Maui. Although it wasn't because of the coronavirus, by some bizarre set of circumstances, during the worst of this we're going to be living off the grid, with very limited exposure to other human beings but also very limited access to modern conveniences (such as electricity and running water). While others are worried about no toilet paper, we had no toilet.

But it occurs to me that people might find interest in the building of a life that's mostly off-the-grid, as we're doing, whether in the time of the coronavirus or not. And I have fewer distractions than I did living in Arizona. So I figured I would blog my experiences, dark feelings as well as light, and with lots of photos.

Pizza Day

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/22/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 134
Little things can bring great rewards.

We've been watching with interest and more than a little sadness at how people on the mainland are reacting to the restrictions meant to keep us all safer. But that doesn't mean I don't empathize with the desire to go out and do something "normal" even something as innocuous as going out for pizza.

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Hana Bay Beach Park

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/18/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 135
Checking out a newly-opened beach.

Today I took Keith to see the Hana Bay Beach Park, which re-opened a few days ago.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/17/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 164
Two men in a tub.

No expected rain today meant getting some property work done. I needed to do a load of wash; Zach asked for photos of the container interior; and I had determined to bring down the cowboy for our evening use. But first, let me explain our experiences with camp showers.

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Hold On—It's My Hat!

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/16/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 136
Ball caps don't work well in Hawai'i.

Today I had to make an unplanned, weekend run into Kahului to pick up some medical prescriptions our Hana doctor didn't have in stock. As I've been really enjoying our solitude on the property, I don't look forward to the relative crowds, especially now that some restrictions have been lifted. And Saturdays have always been more crowded anyway, which is why I've learned to time our trips for Tuesdays.

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The Day We Got Running Water

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/15/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 137
All I really care about is hot showers.

Today was the third Friday we hoped to see the arrival of the Water Guys to complete the running of hose to our cabin. They'd had to cancel the two previous appointments due to rain. But today promised to be a beauty, mostly sunny, so we hoped this would really be the day.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/14/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 150
After all this time, I thought I'd check out our environment.

I arrived in Maui permanently March 17th, and I've been sheltering in our cabin here ever since, with rare trips into the nearest city to get supplies. That's almost two months, and I still hadn't explored the whole property, not to mention Hana, the nearest village. But over the past few days I did that, at least to some extent. And here are the receipts.

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Boxes, and a Bath

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/6/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 163
The past comes to find us.

When Keith and I were packing to leave Arizona, we boxed everything. But we knew we were going to be camping for a few months before moving into our bamboo hut (that we're still waiting for). So we marked the boxes as to when they were needed: right away, after awhile, sometime when we have extra time and money. It takes about 2-3 weeks to send something via "surface". So when Jenny told me she would be mailing the boxes, last week, I didn't expect them till mid-month at the earliest. However, accidentally, she sent them via Priority Mail. So they arrived today, or, at least, half of them did.

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A Busy Day in Paradise

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/5/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 231
Did you ever wonder how people off the grid get rid of their garbage? Also, cows!

After spending a few days doing laundry (I didn't want to tax the solar-powered batteries too much until I knew what they could handle) and dealing with a lot of sporadic rain, I didn't expect we'd get much done today because more rain was predicted. However, that turned out to be wrong.

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Sunset on Old Clothes

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/4/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 148
On our supply run today Keith got himself some new clothes.

We waited in Arizona for three months after finding out we were moving to Maui, to actually make that move. In that time, it made no sense to buy new stuff because we knew shipping things here would be more expensive, in most cases, than re-buying after we arrived. So, that means that Keith, who needed new clothes anyway, really needed them by the time we arrived.

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This Is The Way We Wash Our Clothes, Wash Our Clothes…

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 5/2/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 169
Doing laundry off the grid. No rivers or rocks were involved. Also, cows!

While Jenny and the kids were staying at a B&B in Pa'ia, Keith and I would do our laundry there while we bought groceries and supplies. But with Jenny back in Arizona, and no B&B, it was time to figure out how to work the washer and dryer Zach had previously bought for the purpose.

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Finally! The Solar Shed is Completed

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/29/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 186
The Solar Shed is finally completed. Also, we try a new shower.

After several days in which nothing could really be done because of rain, today we were promised a day of sunshine and the return of the workers to finish the Solar Shed.

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The Kitchen Sink

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/28/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 175
Cows trample but we rescue an essential item.

Despite the indications that today would be another rainy day, we went upstairs to check on things, and found the cows had been at it again, having knocked over several of Jenny's solar yard lights as well as Zach's kitchen sink.

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Jenny's Flight Home

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/26/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 226
Who cares how dangerous it is. Let the kids fly!

So, today is the day Jenny and the kids left on a private jet for Arizona. And I was needed to help out with logistics. Specifically: Zach's truck needed to be returned to the property. So I volunteered to spend a last night at Jenny's B&B (while Keith remained on property with the dogs), from which I would help take them to where their jet was to take off, then drive Zach's truck home.

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The Solar Shed

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/25/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 154
Assembling the shed for the batteries.

Working on a project like getting this property ready to live on is a big deal, and there are a lot of elements that are like dominos: One must fall before the next step can be started. For example, the guy who connects the solar panels to the batteries and electronics can't do that, until the Solar Shed has been completed.

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We Get A Porch!

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/24/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 171
The latest addition to our Maui home. Also, cows!

There's a tarped structure on the upper level that I've had my eye on for awhile. It would be perfect for a porch for our shed. I mentioned it to Jenny, who was on property today trying to get things tidied up a little. And the next thing I knew, she was delivering the tent-like thing via quad!

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/23/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 153
In addition to cows and horses, we share our land with wild pigs, centipedes and even pheasants.

Today marks one of the few that Keith and I have the property to ourselves. The workmen had another job to run to; and Jenny and my grandkids (including grown-up Zach) were not coming out today. But when the humans are away, the animals will play.

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Building the Solar Array

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/22/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 162
We may be off the grid but not in the 1800s.

Today the workmen started on the wooden framework that is to hold the array of solar panels we intend will eventually provide all our electrical power, rather than the generators we are now using (and which are very expensive in terms of the gasoline they use to run.)

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/21/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 166
The shed has gotten too disorganized.

An odd thing has happened. I've started waking up early, like around sunrise, more often than not. And I'm not tired; I feel rested and ready for the day. And I decided: this would be the day I reorganized our living quarters.

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A Trip To The Mall

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/20/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 150
Eerily deserted.

Today we had to make a supply run to "the other side" (Kahului). I hate going to often because it's a long drive; and I don't like the exposure. But I've also never camped for such an extended period, and the supplies we need include, not just food (we still don't have a reliable means of keeping food cold), but extension cords, hooks, paper plates, and other random stuff.

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Meet Hana Health

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/18/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 140
Needing a leg to stand on.

Today dawned beautifully (after a lot of rain yesterday and last night) but brought with it a new problem: The IV site from my emergency room visit had become infected (even though it had been cleaned and bandaged by the ER nurse). Worse, my bad leg—the scarred one that suffered from flesh-eating bacteria— felt as if it was infected. It was bright red, and my foot was horribly swollen. So, another medical visit seemed prudent. But I wasn't willing to drive 2 hours to Kahului to return to Maui Memorial (especially after the awful experience I'd had there, with the infected IV site just adding injury to insult. So I decided to try the local Hana Health place even though it seemed very small.

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Sheltering In Place

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/17/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 179
Beautiful pictures from the property where we're quarantined.

So the phrase being used is "sheltering in place". It refers to huddling down whereever one happens to find oneself when a crisis situation occurs (such as coronavirus). I am so grateful every day that Keith and I managed to move here, which we were planning to do anyway, before the Shutdown happened.

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Emergency Room

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/16/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 181
What happened when I went to the emergency room NOT with coronavirus.

Keith and I just had food poisoning.

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After The Rain

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/14/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 131
A green mess.

Yesterday's rain not only continued but accelerated and lasted through the night, revealing new leaks in our cabin roof (mostly around the skylights). But in the morning it was clear and Ella was happily enjoying both the sun and the damp grass.

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Construction In The Rain

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/13/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 212
The guys who are doing work on the property, had to do it in the rain.

Today we stayed on property except to check mail and get ice. But there was plenty going on here, as the construction guys were working furiously to beat two days' of predicted rain.

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Easter In Quarantine

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/12/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Easter #Maui Page Views: 145
The grandtoddlers go hunting for eggs.

Our family tradition has always been to go to some park or garden to hunt for Easter eggs. The property would have qualified, but it was raining heavily here; so, after breakfast, Keith and I made the 1.5 hour drive into Pa'ia where Jenny's B&B has a generous yard, so the kiddos wouldn't miss out on Easter despite it being in the Time of Cornavirus.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/11/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 182
In the last third of my life, I have taken up off-roading.

One of the toys we have on the property is a 4-wheel all-terrain vehicle, also known as a "quad". Although any good 4-wheel-drive vehicle can get up and down the road to our cabin, the quad is really essential for more off-track destinations. It's also a good workhorse for carting things around the the property, like 5-gallon jugs of water, gasoline, or building materials. So, it makes sense that I learn to drive one.

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Road Block

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/10/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 164
You get tested…and you get tested…Everybody gets tested!

However, once in Hana, we found the Post Office was closed completely. And then we spotted a road block, with cars extending out of sight down the road. I had to drive half a mile in the wrong direction, just to get in line. And I was pissed. There was no way I was going to be able to make my appointment on the other side of the island.

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Growing Older in the Time of Coronavirus

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/8/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 185
Today I turned 69 years old.

I know a number of people who love having birthday parties so everyone will tell them how wonderful they are. I'm the opposite. I love having birthday parties so I can see in person how wonderful my friends and family are. But there'll be none of that this year, because this month there will be no parties, thanks to the coronavirus. And so, I turn 69 today without a party.

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A Yard Full of Cows, a Sky Full of Stars

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/7/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 174
No matter the time of day or night, there's always something to see here.

Today we designated for a supply run into Kahului.

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Bathing In Maui

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 4/6/2020
Topics: #Coronavius #Health #Maui #Travel Page Views: 184
Our shower runs cold but beautiful.

Eventually, perhaps even in a week or two, we expect to have a real shower with hot water. But, in the meantime, we have to take about a 1000-foot walk and the shower is cold…and beautiful!

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Smallpox, Coronavirus, and Living in Isolation

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/4/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 180
A number of people, throughout history, have found a way to avoid sickness.

When I woke it wasn't raining, but looked like it would, soon. I went to the bathroom (outside) while I could. Sure enough, the clouds started rolling down from Haleakala and, while there have a been a few breaks, for the most part today is a downpour and Keith and I are stuck inside.

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Drawing Water

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/4/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 146
My grandson learns about the water tank.

This morning, it looked like it was going to rain again. We had to make the short drive into Hana for ice, but other than that, intended to hang out at the property.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/2/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 145
I learn a new skill.

This morning was a beautiful, bright, clear day. Zach rode down to the shed in the quad to request my assistance "upstairs", cleaning metal.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 4/1/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 147
Lilly is partly Australian Cattle Dog, and she knows what to do with cows.

This morning we awoke to cows on our lawn. That's happened before, but this time, Lilly noticed them. She's an Australian Cattle Dog mix, and apparently herding cattle is in her genes.

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The Jeep

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/31/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 173
We rent a Jeep so we can get around.

My daughter, Jenny, was excited. "There are so many rental cars on Maui, unused, that they are renting them out, dirt cheap!" Until now, we've relied on Jenny's periodic visits to get transportation off-property. An inexpensive rental, as long as it was serious 4-wheel drive, would be a godsend while we wait for our own Honda CR-V to arrive from the mainland.

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Online, At Last!

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/30/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui #SatelliteInternet Page Views: 167
Thanks to orbiting satellites, we are no longer 100% off-grid.

I awoke early today, as I have been doing. But today was the first I'd seen a sunrise here! And it was appropriate, because my hopes were also rising: Today is the day we are to get Internet access at the shed!

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A Break In The Rain

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/29/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 145
A glimpse of sunshine toward the end of rainy season.

Today being Sunday—and it's damned hard keeping track of the days when you don't watch commercial television (remember "Must See Thursday"?!) and you are living in relative isolation from everyone else—we didn't expect anyone to come out to the property today.

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By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/27/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 139
Mudding in the time of coronavirus.

We arrived in Hana's rainiest season, and despite the furious pace at which the grass grows, eventually the rain outruns it and every step one takes, oozes mud.

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First Supply Run

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/25/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 154
Shopping in the time of coronavirus.

Today was the first day since Maui was "shut down" that we drove into town for supplies.

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Keith Arrives in Maui!

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/24/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 151
My husband meets me at our new home.

I was cautiously optimistic. The news told us that the islands would be shut down to tourism on Thursday, tomorrow. If nothing else unexpected came up, or went down, or sidewayds—Keith should be able to complete his journey unscathed. But I'm an overthinker with undiagnosed OCD and ADD. And so many things could go wrong.

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Getting Ready for Keith

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/23/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 156
My husband arrives tomorrow, I HOPE.

Happily, with each day closer Keith's arrival gets, my depression has lifted. Today I'm on the property by myself all day (with the dogs, of course) and determined to make the place as nice as possible for Keith's arrival. Plus, for my own sanity, I needed to tidy and reorganize, since I had some new things (brought by Jenny yesterday) to put away, or to put things into.

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Toddlers at the Property

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/22/2020
Topics: #Coronavirus #Maui Page Views: 155
I get a visit from the grandkids.

Today I got a visit from my youngest grandkids, Gianna and Dominic. This is not in violation of social isolation, as we've been together (but with no one else) several times in the past weeks anyway…including a couple days ago. So the property is a good place to be outside without exposure to any viruses.

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First Day of Exile

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/19/2020
Topics: #Maui Page Views: 150
Fighting depression over being so isolated. Toddlers to the rescue!

As always, I woke a couple times during the night to pee. Since I have to do that outside here, the dogs dashed out to do the same. I was worried since they were off-leash, but I needn't have been concerned…they ran right back in as soon as they were done. (It may have helped that it was raining.)

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Sleeping All Alone

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/19/2020
Topics: #Maui Page Views: 142
Taking social isolation to an extreme.

So…this is it. My first night alone on the property. Or maybe not completely alone, if the dogs arrive.

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My First Visit to The Property

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/17/2020
Topics: #Maui Page Views: 149
My first visit to the last place I'm likely to ever live. (If I'm lucky!)

On this, Day 1 of my Maui residency (first full day), Jenny drove the toddlers and me to The Property, to meet Zach. But when we got there we found we weren't the only visitors: Three horses dropped by to meet us, I suppose.

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Travel in the Time of Coronavirus

By: Paul S. Cilwa Occurred: 3/17/2020
Topics: #Maui Page Views: 142
Taking social isolation to an extreme.

Meanwhile, my daughter, Jenny (the one who actually owns the property) and her toddlers had planned to visit the property for Spring Break. (Yes, even toddlers' schools close for Spring Break!) And I really wanted to spend at least a little time with my grandbabies on Maui. I found I could reschedule my flight with ease, so that I would overlap with Jenny's visit by a couple of days. And then the coronavirus, COVID-19, became a thing.

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Moving to Maui

By: Paul S. Cilwa Posted: 1/1/2020
Page Views: 143
A little piece of Heaven on an island in the sea.

My daughter, Jenny, has purchased land in Hawaii, on the island of Maui, of sufficient acreage for the whole family to retire on someday. And, since I'm already retired, that means, me, first! The property is approximately 28 acres just northwest of the town of Hana on the Maui Coast. Here's a quick look at the property.

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