Hello Friends and Family,

Link to this year's index by clicking here.

Maui Upcountry, Part 2

Across the road from the winery stands a bit of history — the old sugar mill from the time when this area was a working ranch including growing of sugar cane and refining it. For the adventurous photographer, these ruins look incredibly inviting. Unfortunately, it is fenced off so one cannot get a close look. The best I could do was zooming in with my zoom lens, resulting in this photo.

Also nearby is the Ulupalakua Ranch Store & Grill. I spotted this hibiscus flower in the landscaping around the store. Lovely.

Originally, the store served as a ranch grocery, then a cowboy supply store and later a mercantile store. It would appear this cowboy has arrived to pick up a few items before returning to herding cattle.

And this woman appears to be shaping dough — perhaps for buns or small loaves of bread.

The store now offers items that the average tourist might find interesting. Here are cowboy hats, T-shirts, children's books and post cards among other things. Post cards? Does anyone still send post cards? Don't we all just use our smart phones to capture the sights and then text or email the photos to our friends and family? Maybe they are for the unfortunate tourist whose phone battery has died.

Nearby are ointments, lotions, candles, sauces and such — to take care of both your cowboy insides and out.

A store like this requires that you take your time to observe all the display nooks and crannies. Otherwise you might miss a treasure like this model of the store which appears to be from an earlier day when it was a bit run down. Love the history.

The store has evolved. "We're becoming a food destination," says Will Munder, Executive Chef of Ulupalakua Ranch Store & Grill. "Before, it was 'There's the winery,' or 'It's a nice drive,' but now people are coming here from the West Side just to have lunch. They love our food!"

"...like the slow-roasted Maui Cattle Co. beef brisket with housemade BBQ sauce and olive-oil-and-parsley smashed potatoes...or the Upcountry Caesar salad with Waipoli romaine, organic radiccio, housemade Caesar dressing, garlic croutons and grana padano cheese...or Chef Will's personal favorite: the juicy Ulupalakua lamb burger with Swiss cheese, Waipoli lettuce, sweet Kula onions and ripe tomato..."

Over at the checkout counter are even more eclectic items. Note the deer head on the wall. And the second model of the store (probably post-renovation). And mugs if you want a cheap gift for Aunt Agnes.

Not only can you buy decorative T-shirts, you can purchase cowboy-style shirts, aloha shirts — even a saddle. A bit of everything.

Even a little bit of art including souvenir signs are yours for purchase.

Well a couple of other locals have gathered on the lanai as we leave the store. Quite an interesting experience.

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com