living in hawaii

Mike the Honey Guy

For today’s #ThrowbackThursday, the wayback machine takes us to September, 2012. Mike the Honey Guy is a family anecdote told since 2012. The mention of honey is always followed by “Are you the honey guy?”

The Road to Hawaii, or how we sold (almost) everything, quit our jobs and moved to Oahu, as told by one family who is experiencing the journey.

Mike the Honey Guy, and no, it’s not a euphemism.

Mike the Honey Guy

Mike the Honey Guy

This morning, I was flipping through my digital cookbook (, amazing. You can copy and paste recipes from magazine websites, sort by ingredients, create your own categories. I digress). Honey seemed to be an ingredient in most of the recipes I wanted to make. So far, honey has been off our grocery list as $5.00 for a little honey bear bottle seemed a little steep.

The next best thing? Do a Yahoo search for local farmer’s markets. My first stop was a nearby honey farm  site that seemed to suit my needs. It sold honey from mangoes and papayas and bananas and all things tropical. But why, I asked myself, have it shipped to me when everything in Oahu is so close (distance not traffic). I emailed the owner and asked if they sold their wares at any markets, grocery stores, surf shops, etc.

Less than a half hour later, my phone rang (set to Big Ben’s chimes) and Mike, the Honey Guy, was there to answer all my questions and give me the lowdown on the honey industry in Hawaii.  Apparently, it’s controlled by a drug honey cartel, which decides who and who won’t sell at said markets. Mike gave me waaaayy too much information on the benefits of honey and how others mistreat it. For example, leaving it in the hot sun, where it can heat to over 100 degrees, destroys something important and you’ll get instant diabetes. At least, that’s what I thought he said.

We decided to meet in a nearby town at a drug drop store at 6:30. I don’t know, but I think I’ve lost a gigajillion brain cells since moving. It never occurred to me to ask for a description of Mike. He’d be the guy with the drugs honey, right?

Six o’clock rolls around, and Aaron absconds with the car to escort Holli home from work. It’s been raining all day, and the roads are slippery. They slide home at 6:13, and Luke and I hit the road to the drug drop store. Every light is red.  ave I mentioned every single intersection has four lanes of traffic with separate left turn lanes and it takes five minutes for your turn? (I exaggerate) (not by much).

At 6:30 on the dot, we squeal into the drug drop store parking lot. Luke circles around like he’s on a cattle drive while I look for a man selling drugs honey out of the back seat of a seedy looking van. This is starting to sound like a mugging waiting to happen.

No Mike.

Mike the honey guy

No MIke, no honey

We hang around for a couple of minutes then Luke spots a guy sitting at a booth/picnic table (on the sidewalk?) and walks up to him.

“Are you the drug honey man?”


“Are you Mike?  Do you have drugs honey?”

“No, that’s not me.  I’m a contract worker.”

“So you don’t have drugs honey?”


Meanwhile, it’s still raining, and I’m trying to call Mike from the number I thought I’d programmed into my phone. No such number exists. I’m sure we’re going to be mugged, or Mike has some secret reverse phone number technology and is robbing our apartment while we’re getting drenched.

Finally, I figure out that I’d transposed two digits. I read off the correct number and Luke calls him.

“Mike, hey, we’re at the drug drop store, and we’re waiting for you. Oh? Yeah. Okay. No, why don’t you call us when it’s convenient.?No, I don’t think we can swing by your house (it was pitch black by now) Yeah, sorry to hear about your dad. We’ll do this later.”

Me: “What?”

“His dad died.”

WTF? HIS.DAD.DIED. What kind of flim-flam joint is he running? I guess, when your dad dies, taking care of business tends to jump to the bottom of the priority list. It happens.

We went home in the rain. Without drugs honey. I have a feeling I’ll have to change my phone number and email address. Mike will stalk me until I buy his drugs honey. I’ll be obligated to him for life for my drugs honey supply.

Sorry for your loss, Mike.I bet your dad was a hell of a beekeeper.

Cheryl Sterling currently resides in Waikele (the more upscale neighborhood of the official city of Waihapu even though she isn’t).  You can find her books on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

9-21-12 a.m. Update!  Mrs. Mike is delivering drugs honey to my doorstep today. I’m taking the knives out of the drawer.

9-21-12 p.m. Mrs. Mike is not coming. I fear for her life. She’s probably being held captive by the drug time honey lord.  Pray for her.

Cheryl Sterling currently resides in Waikele (the better neighborhood of the official city of Waihapu).  You can find her books on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

2018 #ThrowbackThursday update:

Mike and/or Mrs. Mike never made it with out honey delivery. One has to wonder.

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A new writers group will keep my goals on track.

New Writers Group

A new writers group will keep my goals on track.
I’m in the process of forming a new writer’s group in Kona, Hawaii.  About time, eh?  I should say my husband sneakily posted some Craigslist ads and I started getting phone calls.  I admire his concern for my social and writing needs. 🙂

Currently, we have eight (8) members on (search for Kona Writers Group and join.  It’s free).  Our next meeting is Sept. 21.  Details are on Meetup.

In the meantime, I’m now Empress-elect of a small critique group.  Interestingly, none of them write fiction.  A new perspective?

Does this mean I have to write on a regular basis?

As if that’s not enough, Continue reading New Writing Group! Yowsers!

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star fruit

Star fruit, what?

Until two weeks ago, we didn’t know we had a star fruit tree. It’s not very tall, maybe 20 feet, rooted just above where we park the cars. We might have noticed what we thought were long yellow leaves, but being from the Midwest, yellow leaves are not uncommon. I guess we don’t have our island brain in high gear yet.

Then, the tree started shedding fruit all over the cars, and we took a closer look. “Hey, we have a star fruit tree!” Known as carambola in other parts of the world, it’s high in antioxidants, potassium and Vitamin C. Now, the only time I’ve eaten star fruit is on fruit pizza, so my recipe file is a little slim. Some judicious Pinterest searches led me to starfruit jam and smoothies. A little imagination added starfruit to the ingredients for fruit roll-ups, which are slooowly baking in the oven. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Here’s a shot of our tree. Pretty innocuous.20141230_140546 You can see why we overlooked it.



Here’s the fruit still growing. Not like a leaf at all.20141230_140602



And about 1/3 of our harvest so far. We’ve given a lot away.  Tomorrow, I’ll make more jam, maybe keep some out for toast.20141230_140711





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