Thursday, February 14, 2008

Aloha friends

Well, I have some news. We just got back from Hawaii yesterday. That is news in itself! We had a great time. The weather was warm and mostly sunny, and the sights were beautiful! But the real news is that I accepted a postdoc in Hilo. I am so excited about the job and living in such a great place.

I will be working on a dry forest restoration project. The goals are to reduce invasive grass cover (which will reduce the potential for forest fires) by increasing native species establishment in the understory. The project has the standard factorial field experiments and a big remote sensing component. Very little is known about native dry forest communities in Hawaii, so there should be a lot of neat questions to explore within the project!

The town of Hilo is really interesting because it is not touristy at all. It has a great farmer's market, with all kinds of things I've never heard of before along with papayas, lychee, and the rest. The population is mostly Asian and native Hawaiian, and there are lots of Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, and Filipino restaurants. SS, you can't go too far without bumping into another bubble tea place!

I am going to keep advertising the wonders of the Big Island with the hope that you all will come visit us there. Starting with waterfalls in town:

Beautiful Waipio Valley:

And lots of lava and huge craters:

Start saving your frequent flier miles!


Sparkling Squirrel said...

Wowee! Congratulations. When do you start? (Dare I ask when do you defend?) I can't wait to visit and drink bubble tea (absolutely none in WV).

Erin said...

I think I'm going to start in June, but it's a little flexible. My defense is scheduled for April 22. Yikes!

Irene said...

Ooooh, gorgeous pictures! That is incredibly exciting, well all of it is - finishing your PhD, landing the postdoc, and getting to move to Hawaii!

I hope I do get a chance to visit, maybe next winter during the "blah" season here in Philly.

Beth said...


My friend Marta is Hilo as a department chair - does she happen to be the chair of your new department?

Erin said...

I'm not directly affiliated with the University (it's a gov't job), but there seems to be a lot of collaboration with folks in the biology department. Is that her dept?

Beth said...

I think so - she studies snails :-)

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Molly said...

Way cool, Erin! I have never been to Hawaii but it looks stunning. Very interesting sounding project, too :)

Jenny said...

I think this post has the most labels ever, and is completely deserving of them--Hawaii sounds so lovely. What beautiful photos. Many congratulations! It sounds like a great situation.