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Mar 25, 2016

I'm back in Wenatchee, and already missing Maui. We had such a wonderful vacation, and there were so many highlights(1). Some of you will know that I am into plants and trees, so it won't surprise you that a highlight for me was meeting the Banyan tree in the little town of Lahaina. I say "meeting" because it felt as special as meeting a person. It is about 150 years old, and was imported from India. It is from the fig family, and produces a little red berry that is not that good to eat. What is impressive about the tree is that it has spread through its aerial roots, and has become many trees. Its limbs(2) are massive, and it looks as though many trees have joined together. When we first went to the park, children were playing underneath the huge limbs, and running through the natural arches that the Banyan tree had made. The aerial roots are long and thin, growing from upper branches. They eventually touch the ground and attach themselves. These attached roots quickly get thicker, always maintaining their link(3) to the original tree. Compared to other trees, it must be considered a fast-grower because it has filled the Lahaina park in only one and a half centuries. It's right next to the beach, so it is ideally placed for people to hang out in its shade to enjoy the sea breeze. Lahaina is a tourist attraction, tastefully lined with shops, galleries, and restaurants, but you could say that the Banyan tree is its crowning glory.

1. 'Highlights' are special moments or places, or light-colored streaks in your hair.

a. He was the highlight of the show; his singing was amazing.

b. Your hairdresser did a great job. Your highlights make you look much younger!

c. The highlight of our trip was snorkeling with turtles and sharks.

2. 'Limbs' means parts of the body that project and are useful, like an arm or a leg, or a similar body part of an animal, like a wing. It is also another word for a branch.

a. The limb bones in a spider monkey are thin.

b. After rock climbing all day, her limbs were sore.

c. We must cut that limb off the tree before it breaks a window when it's windy. 

3. 'Link' is a commonly used word, especially in computer circles. It also means a physical or figurative attachment, and a piece of a chain.

a. Follow the link on my blog to see more pictures of Lahaina.

b. All his family members are creative, and he is linked to them by the same characteristic.

c. The metal chain on the gate has some broken links that we must replace.

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