I just returned from a trip to Hawaii with my family. We spent most of our time on Maui but we took a day trip (by ferry) to the island of Molokai, which is famous for its leper colony founded by a Roman Catholic priest named Father Damien in the 19th century.
Compared to Oahu, Maui, the Big Island, and Kauai, Molokai is very undeveloped, with a population of only 7,000 people. I took quite a few photographs during our brief visit to this beautiful and interesting island and I will post more about Molokai later this week, but I wanted to share one highlight: the Post-A-Nut service offered by the Hoolehua Post Office. Here, you can select a free coconut and mail it, unboxed, anywhere in the world simply by writing an address and sticking postage stamps on it.
The postmaster, Gary Lam, greeted us warmly and apologized for not having enough coconuts to choose from, even though there were about a dozen available in plastic bins on the floor. (No other customers were in the post office.)
Note that the coconuts are free, but only if you mail one from from the post office. Seems fair to me!
Postmaster Lam told us that the Post-A-Nut service was started about 20 years ago, and that over 50,000 coconuts had been mail from his post office. (It costs about $10 to ship a coconut in United States.)
Even though the ferry ride back to Maui was so rough that my 8-year-old vomited a geyser of electric blue popsicle juice, she said the Post-A-Nut experience was worth the discomfort. I agree!
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. Come and hear Mark speak at the ALA conference in Chicago on July 1.