Where are you from?!

Pristine waters, breath-taking vistas, magnificent ocean creatures and warm people; it’s no wonder that Hawaii plays host to visitors from around the world!

One of the enriching aspects of working the Kona-Kohala coast, is that Kona is a popular destination so I have the wonderful opportunity to meet and engage with many of these national and international guests.

Just in the past week, I’ve had guests from Dubai, Canada, Japan, France, and Zimbabwe…  They all have questions like; “What’s a must do activity, while here?”, “Which restaurants have the best poke?”, and “What is a good beach for small children?”.  I give them some insight, and they’re thankful, but what most excites me is hearing about their perspective and culture.  Through our conversations and their stories, It’s kind of like the world coming to me!  Last month, I spent a day with a wonderful family visiting from Serbia.  They generously and passionately shared about the history of their country; Bosnian War, the dissolution of Yugoslavia and also the modern-day characteristics of the Serbian people and culture.  I enjoyed my time with them, while taking them to various Big Island locations such as South Point and Papakolea Beach (Popularly known as Green Sand Beach).

A lovely couple from Dubai expressed to me how much they were enjoying the sights and weather, here, on Hawaii Island. “It is simply beautiful here.” the wife said as if recalling the details of a dream.  I responded “Yes, it is.  I feel blessed each and every morning.”, I replied.  From the videos and photos, I’ve seen, Dubai is also beautiful.”, I continued.  “Yes, but Hawaii Island is the opposite of Dubai.”, the husband said.  “How so?”, I asked.  “As beautiful as Dubai is, it is all man-made… artificial.  Hawaii Island is mostly natural. You know?… Natural beauty.“, his wife added.  “Yes, that is a good point.” I said with a smile.  We went on to have an interesting conversation about renewable energy and Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City.  I love this stuff Haha!

On  my website, and the Facebook page, there is a considerable amount of traffic from around the planet.  The website stats indicate the following countries as the top five visitors of my page:

1. United States
USA

2. Japan
Japan Flag

3. Canada
Canadian Flag

4. India
Indian Flag

5. Australia
Australians Enjoy Visiting Hawaii

Where are you reading this post from?  Please, rep your city and country in the comment section below!

When you finally make it to Hawaii Island (or return ;D), make sure you give me a shout!

I hope to see you in the Kona Sun! Peace!

Time For Change?

 

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Happy New Year!
A New Year is always a good time to “start a fresh”, re-invent yourself, begin again…
The calendar year represents a new cycle for many things, why not jump on that wave of change and ride that momentum to your advantage!

I’ve noticed an interesting trend over the past few months, with some of my guests.  There seems to be an increasing number of people asking about the average cost of homes, and land on Hawaii Island.  I know that Hawaii has a way of making people feel like their visit is always too short.
I tell them “There are a few factors, but between 200k and a few million.”.  Appearing encouraged, some couples begin lightheartedly planning out how they would make their move to the Big Island.

Hawaii Island does not only seem to be an attractive option for international and continental U.S. visitors, but for the residence of the neighboring Islands as well.  With real estate prices on Oahu sky-rocketing, the lure of, relatively, inexpensive properties and land being offered on the Island of Hawaii, it most likely continue to be a growing destination.

Although the 2018 Hawaii County census data has not been released yet, the rate of growth in 2017 was 1.1%, braking the 200,000 mark.   If the increased talk and curiosity is any indicator, that number is sure to increase in the upcoming years.

Do you need to change your location? How about your job?, Perhaps just your attitude?  Whatever it may be, don’t be afraid, and go for it!

Honu at Punaluu Beach

Kailua-Kona With D The Driver

The last blog I wrote was at the tail end of May. That was just before I took my trip back to the East Coast. It was on this visit when my laptop was stolen from my rental vehicle. Although I did not allow the theft to rob me of a good time visiting friends and family, it did impact, among other things, my ability to write my weekly blog. With a laptop, there’s freedom- Freedom to turn virtually any place into “my office”. Any of the beautiful beaches, parks, or cafés magically transform into places for me to manage accounts, do paperwork, communicate with clients, and consistently write my D The Driver Blog. A lot has gone down since I last shared.

The Volcano.
The breakout lava flow is still flowing- like a river, in fact! Fissure 8 has emerged as the dominant source of the lava activity. The Big Island is getting Bigger! For the latest maps and information, dealing with Kilauea and lava activity, please visit the USGA’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory site.
https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/multimedia_maps.html

Added a 12 passenger van service option.
Now, if you would like to apply my exemplary service to the delivery of your group, of up to 12, on an outing or retreat, I can take care of that!

12 Passenger Chevy Van

Absolute Ba;ance In Hawaii
Yoga Retreat Participants from Tokyo, Japan.

The cruise ships are back!
After the news coverage gave everyone a good fright, the cruise ships discontinued their stops to Hawaii Island’s Hilo and Kona ports.
When Norwegian Cruise Line announced it would be adding the ports back onto its Pride of America itinerary, here’s what they said:

“As we have always said, Hawaii is an incredible destination,” the cruise lines said. “We have visited its ports for well over a decade and we are very happy to be returning to Hilo and Kona. Please know that the safety and security of our guests and crew remains our first priority so we will continue to monitor and evaluate the situation.”

I had the privilege of driving a pleasant older couple from Fort Lauderdale, FL, last Tuesday. I picked them up at the pier. They told me that they wanted to drive around, see a few sites, and find themselves at a beachfront restaurant, for lunch. So we cruised South on Ali’I Drive, up to Keauhou Bay and the scenic lookout, and then we headed North to Hualalai Resort where they enjoyed a nice lunch at The Four Seasons’ Beachtree Restaurant, situated on the beach! Then, the final stop before returning to the pier- Kona Mountain Coffee- for some gifts. I returned them to the pier with a half hour to spare and big smiles on their faces. They thanked me for a wonderful afternoon and said “If you’re ever in the Fort Lauderdale area, give us a call.”. I just might do that. Haha!

With so many things to see and do on this wonderful island, what would you like to do or see?
Give me a shout, and we can work it out!

I hope to see you in the Kona Sunshine!

Hawaii Shores
D The Driver At Your Service!

Interesting People, Interesting Conversations

Kailua-Kona, Travel
D The Driver, serving Hawaii Island

What does an Admiral of a British Royal Navy submarine, a South Korean car engineer, a billion-dollar real estate broker, and major recording artist have in common?   Me!  They have all rode with me (Not all at the same time. Although that would be interesting. Lol), while visiting the Kona-Kohala Coast! Lol.  I enjoy engaging in conversations with interesting people.  And to get paid while doing so is frosting on the cake.

Kailua-Kona transportation
Photo by Joel Collins.

It’s not lost on me that there are some people, at times, that are not interested in speaking during our 20-35 minute commute.  Whether they need to send emails, texts, or just catch a quick nap, it is incumbent on me, to identify those times and keep quiet.  But for the most part, people ARE interested in engaging.

I’m not a star-struck individual.  I believe people are people.     However, I am fascinated by all people.  Each of us has a journey, and each path is unique.  It’s these paths, and how we process the experiences, that differentiates our perspectives. Music and movie celebrities are interesting to me but no more interesting than any individual that has distinguished themselves in their respective field.  I guess I’m just curious about how different folks are navigating their life experience.  Each person that enters my vehicle is the sum total of their journey, thus far.  The work they choose, the way they view various events taking place in the world.  I feel enriched when people share their stories and perspectives.

Last week I had the honor of transporting a noted liver specialist.  “There are five major organs in the human body, how did you reach the decision to specialize in the liver?”  I asked the good Dr.  He lit up in his response.  Speaking of all the wonderful functions of the liver. From filtering toxins from our blood to the storage of vitamins “It’s a fascinating organ!”, he expressed.  Although he would not be as known as an entertainer or professional athlete, he and other professionals have reached a level of success that would make them “rock stars” in their respective industries.  I’m interested in everyone, but I know, generally, people want to know about “high profile” figures.

Have I driven celebrities? Yes. Do I broadcast who has ridden with me? No.
From time to time people ask me “What celebrities have I driven?”  I always answer “Everyone that rides with me are V.I.P!”.



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Friend Requests From Sexy Women… Or Are They?

As Mark Zuckerberg faces the questions of lawmakers, Tuesday, April 10th, concerning Facebook’s role in The promotion of “fake news”, the Russians use of FB to influence the presidential election,  privacy and data issues and the whole Cambridge Analytica fiasco; I am going to speak about the fallacious FaceBook profiles of… Hot Women!
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With my “Dee Driver” Facebook profile, I will accept pretty much any “friend” request I receive.  Why? Because this page is linked to a service I provide.  Many people visit Kona, Hawaii.  Having a Facebook page allows me to connect with people from around the world, that may, at some point, come to visit.  I enjoy sharing about this beautiful rock in the Pacific Ocean.  It’s also a great way to keep in touch with the good people I meet, while driving my vehicles- Airport Taxi; Luxury SUV; and 12 Passenger Van.  There are, however, an increasing amount of fake Facebook accounts.

When I first started receiving requests from these attractive women, I did not think much about it.   I accepted the requests.  Then, when the volume and sexual nature of some of the profile pics increased, it caused me to pause.  I mean, I know I’m a handsome dude but damn! Lol.  So I would check out some of these profiles, and there were a few indicators that revealed to me that these accounts were bogus.

Here are some common signs I’ve noticed:

One Profile Picture.  Just having one profile picture is not proof of a fake account, but could be an indicator.  There are some people that are extremely selective about the photos of themselves that they share on social media.  (By the way, I find that many of those types of people hardly ever look like that one photo that they love.). Not sure where these perpetrators are snatching the photos of these women, but I venture to guess it is without their permission.

No Cover Photo.  Like having one profile picture, having no cover photo, in and of itself is not enough to determine its fake.  Some may not know how to post a cover photo.  Some just may not care.  I imagine the fake ones don’t have a cover photo because they only have one pic of the unsuspecting girl that they are using to create the site.  I also think it may be about creating many of these accounts and spending the least amount of time, building them, as possible.

Newly Opened Account.
Again, this in and of itself does not mean that it’s a phony profile.  There are many people that close one account and open a new one just to get away from certain people.  These accounts tend to get flagged, and FB will shut them down.  So that forces them to keep creating profiles.  I find it hard to believe that they find enough people to make money off of to make this lucrative enough to keep doing it.  But they must be making some loot!

A Bunch of Thirsty-looking Guys.
In their sparse “friends” list, you’ll see that most, if not all, are men.
Seriously, these poor guys really believe that the woman, in the picture, has a genuine interest in them.  They leave posts of flowers, and words of thanks for accepting them.

No Interaction With the “profile owner”,

When these guys post how beautiful she is or thank her for the friend request, there is no response.

And finally, the kicker!

A Plug for the Website.

 They will typically have an invitation to their xxx site with a message like: “You want to meet with me, I will come to the site ❤️  Watch my latest Videos *insert porn link here*. ”  I have never clicked on one of these links- they could lead to infecting your commuter with a virus, or collect your data- but I imagine that it leads to a porn site, where you will need some sort of payment device.

Have you ever received any of these phony “friend” requests?   I imagine there are different kinds.

If any of these are photos of someone you know, please alert them to how their image is being used and the profile name it’s under (although, I’ve seen the same pictures being used with different profile names.)
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