Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sometimes you get what you need!

I landed at the Fairmont Orchid on the Kohala Gold Coast hot, sweaty and tired from a week packed with adventure on the Big Island. Now it was time to plug into the power of the place. My room overlooked the magnificent grounds with a dazzling display of tropical foliage. Bright pink blooms covered the green canopy of the tree shading my balcony. Winding pathways through a wonderland of lava rock waterfalls helped me imagine I was a royal Hawaiian in the land where the spring of love flows freely.

I entered the gracious “Spa Without Walls” where I would soon enjoy the loving touch of a healing maser learned in the art of lomi-lomi massage. The ancient masters used long sweeping movement making use of their whole bodies to relieve tension in muscles But, more important they directed spiritual energy, or mana, to the recipient to encourage healing and regenerative powers in the body. It is way to open us up to connecting with the land, the sea, the air we breathe. The Hawaiians believed that the trees, the rocks the flowers, and especially moana, the grand and vibrant sea are all a part of us. I focused on that idea as my expert masseuse started with my neck and back with long strokes of her forearm kneading with her elbows finding those sources of tension and making fingers of stress let go. I listened to the lapping waves as the soft, warm breeze caressed my skin. When my provider was done with her magic, I rested for while absorbing the energy of this sacred place, once home to ancient Hawaiian royals. Could there be anything more heavenly for a weary traveler?

Hat’s Off to Half Off! In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Hawai‘i’s statehood, The Fairmont Orchid slashes 50 percent off published rates now through Dec. 20. Book by calling toll-free at (800) 845-9905, or visit and enter promo code PFPO. No minimum-stay required.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Journey to Wellness

Word is out! The most idyllic hike in the Sedona, Arizona, the West Fork trail that winds up a canyon shaded by yellowing cottonwoods and green ponderosa beside a chatty creek, is not a secret anymore. October is the most popular month for visitors hungry for fall colors and cool temps. The best way to cap this day off is a stop at the Sedona Hilton Spa with hot and cold pools, steam bath and sauna where the pampering knows no bounds. Aching muscles are soothed by every other type of massage known to womankind. Their signature “Full Circle” massage is “all about you” my masseuse informed me as she smoothed hot rocks up and down my back, and the back of my legs, melting tension from muscles. A little foot reflexology, capped off with a bit of cranial work and I was ready to hike another one of the wonderful trails laced throughout the splendid red rock formations of Sedona. You don’t have to be a guest at the hotel to enjoy the full service Spa and Salon. Call 928 284 6900 for your spa appointment.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Linda talks about How to Make Travel Writing Work for You

Ever dream about getting wonderful trips to exotic places for FREE?
I will be speaking at Distant Lands Travel Store in Pasadena, California on Sept. 28 at 7:30Pm on how to get you on the fast track to achieving this goal. If you can’t make it just go to my website and download my free e-book:

How to Make Travel Writing Work for You

Tip #1- Find your niche

Choose something you are passionate about. Think about your areas of expertise and how you can capitalize on them. Are you a birder? Then go for some of the great birding trips about the globe to get you started. This is going to be a labor of love so make sure you love what you are doing.

For the complete list of tips Go to my website . Enter your name and e-mail in the top right corner of homepage and magically the e-book will appear.

While you are visiting, check out Wai-nani; High Chiefess of Hawaii- There are reviews, a first chapter and reader comments about my ultimate destination piece.

Please stop by

Linda Ballou

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Wai-nani-New Voice from Old Hawaii Now on Kindle

Okay all of you cool people with Amazon Kindle readers, you may now purchase Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawai’i at the Kindle store on Amazon.

Want to travel light, save the trees, and store hundreds of books without losing a room, then think Kindle. A Kindle reader allows you download books, newspapers, magazines and blogs into a device you can fit in the palm of your hand.. Check it out on Amazon.

Wai-nani is also available in paperback on Amazon.
or at

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Kuhina Nui-Ka.ahumanu-Queen Regent of Hawaii

Kuhina Nui Kuhina Nui by Rosemary I. Patterson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Readers of my historical novel, Wai-nani: High Chiefess of Hawaii, that ends in 1819 with the burning of the Hawaiian gods often ask me when I am going to write a sequel. The answer is never. Rosemary Patterson has already done it in a much more informed way than I ever could. Kuhina Nui follows the life of Ka’ahumanu, the favorite wife of Kamehameha the Great from 1820 to 1832. The story is told through the eyes of a half Hawaiian young man who serendipitously becomes the guardian of a bag lady Ka’ahumanu has chosen to be the voice for her story. Much aligned Ka’ahumanu is blamed for paving the way for missionaries who manipulated lands away from native Hawaiians and systematically tired to destroy their culture. To some she is remembered as the “loving mother of the people” who brought the end to the harsh kapu system, and to others she is the “flaw that brought down the chiefdom.” The aftermath of her actions two hundred years ago is still in play today. Ms. Patterson has gone where I feared to tread. This is an informative account cloaked in a young adult historical format with a time-travel twist. If you don’t mind tripping over a typo or two you will learn a lot and have fun too.
Linda Ballou, author of Wai-nani, High Chiefess of Hawaii

View all my reviews >>

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Water Lomi Anyone?

If having your spine massaged and joints manipulated while floating face up in water at a gentle 95 degrees sound comforting, then I’ve got the place for you. It is the closest thing to heaven on earth and it is called the Kalani Ocean Retreat in Puna on the Big Island in Hawaii. Ask for Sylvie Gendron, she is expert in Water-lomi the combination of water-based Watsu massage and the ancient Hawaiian lomilomi healing massage. I arrived with bundle of nerves and bad memories that made me fell like I was carrying a sack of rocks. Sylvie enabled me to put my burdens down.

You may reach her directly at
Or at where many other forms of bodywork are also available