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Hawaii 2003

Author: EastCoastTropics
Date of Trip: August 2003

August 5, 2003:

We left Boston on time and with no problems. Newark, NJ was overcast when we arrived. Since we would be there for an hour, we grabbed some lunch. By the time we NJ, it was pouring. Our departure flight was shutdown for about half an hour. This and the fact that our flight was overbooked caused us to leave NJ 1½ hours behind schedule. The flight from NJ to Honolulu was long (10 hours) but the service in the coach section was outstanding. Their entertainment included tv shows, movies and video games. I slept for to the first 4 hours. After getting up I had to get out of my seat and walk around...my butt felt like stone! Walking around the cabin I saw at least half dozen infants and children who were under the age of 4 years. Towards the end of the flight I stood in an emergency doorway and dozed off for an hour.

We arrived in Honolulu, HI at 6:30pm Hawaiian time. It was so beautiful! The water was soooo blue, the sun was out and it was 85 degrees. It's a sight to see the island laid out before you as the aircraft makes it's final approach to Honolulu International Airport. When we got off the plane and into the lobby the smell of the air was very evident! It was hard not to notice how fragrant the air smelled! Professional Lei greeters stood with armloads of gorgeous flower leis and called out the names of passengers. My parents met us at the baggage claim area and presented each of us with a fresh flower lei. I almost forgot how beautiful and intoxicating the flowers of Hawaii can be! We got our luggage quickly (none of which were searched!) and loaded them onto my dad's El Camino. I was surprised to see his license plate for Korean War Vets! My dad was a US Marine and a combat veteran in the Korean War.

We got onto the rental car tram and headed to Enterprise Car Rental. I had an SUV reserved and ended up with a 2004 Chevy Trail Blazer.

At my parents home we unpacked and had some pupus to snack on...sushi, teriyaki chicken and fresh fruit. We hit the sack before 10pm but was dead tired as it was 4am EST time! More later!

August 6, 2003:

This morning we had surfing lessons with "Sunset Suzy!" (www.sunsetsuzy.com) We had to met her at the lifeguard stand at the Waimea Bay Beach Park at 11am. We left early so that we could take our time getting there and to spend some time at the beach. Suzy came along with two other students and we got in our cars to follow her to Chun's Beach and little ways down the road. There weren't too many folks at this beach...about half dozen or so sunbathers. There were a few beginners catching the foot-and-a-half waves. There were two other instructors in addition to Suzy. Doug and Al were fabulous and gave us a 30 minute beach lesson. Then in the water we all went. All three instructors brought everyone out and got everyone to catch waves! It was so fun! My daughters and their friends had such a blast! They were ripping and I got great shots too! Suzy brought me out and pushed me into the waves. I almost got up but ended up riding boogie board style! *LOL* After the 2 hour lessons we followed Suzy, Doug and Al to another cove where there were several Honus (hawaiian sea turtles). They come onto the beach to snack on the algae on the rocks and reefs. It was such a great experience to see such beautiful creatures up close. I even got photos of my daughters trying to feed it. It was finally time to say goodbye to Suzy. We said our "alohas" and I also bought a cute little t-top shirt from her as a moment of my lessons from her....yes, I gave her my card! *S* After the lesson we headed into the town of Haliewa for lunch. The town is still quaint and I took more photos! We had two large pizzas at Pizza Bob's....there goes the Atkin's Diet! But it was delicious and afterwards we went to Aoki's Shave Ice store (http://members.tripod.com/bexdevon/id45.htm) for shave ice and to purchase some souvenirs. We also went shopping in the Sand & Sea Surf Shop and the girls picked a few items as well as bikinis.

Afterwards we headed to the Aiea area. We stopped at the Ice Palace so that my daughter could get a schedule for their ice time. The Ice Palace has changed very little since my husband and I met there over 20 years ago! More later!

August 7, 2003:

I took my oldest daughter to skate the 7:30am morning ice session at the Ice Palace. She commented that the ice was hard and there were only two other skaters on the ice with her. She was able to practice all her double jumps including the double axel which she's still working on. I spoke to John who is now the general manager of the rink. He has worked there since the rink first opened up and when he saw me he called me by my nick name which I hadn't used in years!! *LOL* It was so good to see him again and catch up a bit. Afterwards, I took the girls to the Ala Moana Shopping center. On the way I took a wrong turn and ended up going over the H3 freeway. It took us to the windward side of the island. As soon as you go through the tunnel, you're on the windward side of the island and the view is just from the freeway is absolutely breathtaking! I had to get onto the Likelike highway to get back into Honolulu. We arrived at the Ala Moana Shopping center and my, oh my has that place changed! There are more stores, especially high-end designer stores! *L* After two hours of shopping, we had some lunch in the crowded food court and headed back to get ready for the luau.

We left for Paradise Cove at Ko Olina with good appetites for hawaiian food! After arriving, we checked in and mingled with other guests while sipping on mai tais. We were greeted with beautiful flower leis and got our picture taken with two cute hawaiian boys. There were lei making, polynesian tattooing activities, hawaiian games, story and legend telling to take part in. There were also various little booths with hawaiian crafts as well as a gift shop. Paradise Cove is located on the ocean in a cove and I got some photos of a local fisherman and his net as well as the magnificent Hawaiian sunset! The food was plentiful and sooo ono (delicious)! We started out with a garden salad, french dressing and macaroni salad. The main course consisted of rice, kalua pork, fish and fried chicken. For dessert we had Haupia, Banana cake with Coconut frosting and slices of pineapple. The food was too much but our two servers kept asking us if we wanted more!! It was all you can eat but I just couldn't eat anymore! *L*

The entertainment was top notch and I would highly recommend this show! The musicians sang beautifully and the dancers were so energetic! I was blown away and so impressed with the vigor of the dancers. They participated in numbers for the Moari, Tonga, Hawaiian, Tahitian and Samoan dances! And it was a special treat to watch the fire dance! On our way out we purchased the photo with the two cute Hawaiian boys! *L* More later!

August 8, 2003:

We spent the day shopping today!! Since I have a Sam's CLub Business Membership I took the girls shopping today. I ended up buying 13 Hawaiian Music CD's! They are such a good price and there were so many to choose from! I got Slack Key Guitar music, Cecilio & Kapono, Olomana, Kalapana, Brothers Cazimero, Kapono Beamer, Hapa, Keali'i Reichel, Guava Jam, Manoa Sunday and more! *L* I also picked up several strands of Kukui Nut leis, hawaiian snacks and a pair of Hawaiian print car seat covers! I usually hate shopping, but I had fun today shopping for hawaiian stuffs that I can't get up in the states! *S* Later in the afternoon went to pick up more Lauhala baskets! They didn't have the rectangle size I needed so I ended up with the square size instead....it'll work! *S*

Weather today was sunny, hot and slightly humid!! More later!

August 9, 2003:

Today I picked up a friend of mine since small keed time and we all went to the Aloha Stadium Flea Market! It's an outdoor market that is held every Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays in the parking lot surrounding the stadium. There were so many booths....many of the same items. We saw so many T-shirts....5 or 10 for $20. Hawaiian print bookbag, suitcases, fanny packs and purses. Hawaiian barbie dolls with hula outfits and implements....too many bargains to list. We were there for only 2½ hours and we still didn't get to all the booths! I picked up many items for my newly-to-be remodeled kitchen...pot holders, coffee mugs, counter displays, as well as wooden wall hangings. Also, picked up some fabric for the lauhala baskets. As the morning wore on it got hotter and we left for lunch at a nearby McDonald's. Afterwards we headed out to the beach at Ko Olina. We went to the "Ulua - Lagoon 4". It' such a beautiful beach! It's located in a small cove that is set just next to the resort. The weather was just perfect too....the tradewinds came right off the mountains and kept us comfortable! This facility was great and I highly recommend this beach especially for those folks with small children. There were parking and beach attendants....showers, restrooms and plenty of shade provided by coconut trees and large grass umbrellas. You could choose to sit right on the beach or a few feet back on the well- manicured lawn. We went in the late afternoon so it wasn't to crowded. The cove is perfect for small children .... it has reefs so that the waves (small ones!) break on the reefs keeping the water in the cove nice and calm. There are also nets to keep the sea creatures out of the cove. This are is alo quite busy with commercial aircraft overhead making their approach to Honolulu International Airport.

The weather is starting to cool off....not as humid as the past couple of days we've been here....it's more tolerable now! More later!

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