After a completely unanticipated (and unfortunate) 4 month hiatus from blogging, I’m finally back and I plan to keep it that way! Though my blogging activity has been nonexistent, the past 4 months have been very eventful for me – I graduated (finally), accepted a job offer (I’ll be starting this coming Monday), and went on a family vacation to Hawaii! So with that said, my next few posts will be recounting our adventures on the trip. Hope you enjoy!
Day 1: Tired Traveling
Our flight left at some ungodly hour Sunday morning after I decided it would be a swell idea to go to the Saturday night Pirate game. “Sure I’ll only get like 3 hours of sleep,” I thought, “but I’ll just sleep on the plane!” After all, I’ve always had a great deal of success with that. So after our 10 hours of flights (in which I managed about a half hour of interrupted, uncomfortable napping), we landed on Oahu in Waikiki around 3PM local time. We checked into our hotel (see the photos for the beautiful view we had) and ate dinner at California Pizza Kitchen (when in Hawaii right?). Waikiki is home to some serious shopping (Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, etc.), so if that’s your thing, then it’s a dream destination. Another random and amusing (in my opinion) Waikiki tidbit is that its famous beaches aren’t natural – sand is dredged from the ocean floor and deposited on shore. I found it funny how we basically created our own paradise. But anyway, after dinner, we headed back to the hotel and crashed after a long day of travel.
Day 2: No Rest for the Weary
We awoke early the next day, still not completely on Hawaiian time, and headed out for the day. Our first stop was at Pearl Harbor, where we toured through the various museums and took the ferry to the memorial of the USS Arizona. It’s a powerful and indescribable experience to visit these sites where so many lost their lives. For me, it was a mix of pride, in how we overcame such a tragedy, and despair, because I couldn’t help but think of the methods we used to win the war. Without getting into anything further, I will say that I have the utmost respect for those who serve at any time in the armed forces.
Our next stop that day was at the Dole plantation. It’s kind of a tourist trap type of destination and is really geared more for kids, but I still learned something out of it – how pineapples grow (hint: not in a tree, which was what I thought). The main thing to do there is walk around the grounds of the garden, which is full of different Hawaiian plants and such. There’s an audio tour that goes along with the walk, though after about 3 stops, I got tired of hearing the story of plants over and over. In addition to the Garden walk, there’s a maze and the “Pineapple Express,” a mall-Santa-style train that drives through the grounds (as you can tell, a kids-oriented place). The walk provided enough pineapple-fueled excitement for the day after the walk, so we left and continued our drive around the island.
After the plantation, we drove along the coast to Hanauma Bay, which is famous for its snorkeling. Though the water was a little murky, we still saw plenty of fish in the reef and even swam next to a sea turtle for a little bit! It was a beautiful park and a great way to end the day.
And so, our first 2 days in paradise came to a close. Check out the pics for a little more information on the various places and let me know what you think!
Sea turtle! Video credit goes to my brother.