Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hawaii Recap - Day One


Hawaii (Oahu) was every bit as wonderful as I thought it would be. We actually came back on Sunday, but I haven't been able to bring myself to write about the trip yet because I am, quite honestly, rather depressed to be back. Spent yesterday moping about and feeling hostile at work. I actually downloaded "ocean sounds" for my ipod last night. But, now I've gotten used to being out of "paradise" and can get on with my life. Also, I got our underwater pictures developed so I can put them up here.

So we left for Honolulu really early Thursday morning. Paid a fortune at the airport Burger King ($16 for breakfast for two!) only to learn that Hawaiian Airlines is one of the few airlines that still serves food. I can't say my pasta with sauce was very good, but the meal service helped kill some time. I slept most of the way and watched Ocean's Thirteen, which was not so great.

Anyway, we finally got to Honolulu and it was beautiful there! We hopped on a shuttle to get our rental car from Hertz. The shuttle driver was so wonderful - I think he really possessed the "aloha spirit" and was so friendly and jovial. He even pointed out his wife to us, who also drove an airport shuttle, but for a different rental car company. He joked that she liked to keep an eye on him - adorable. It took awhile for us to get our car, but eventually we did. Turned out to be a white Mustang convertible - whee!!!

I will say, while I enjoyed the convertible very much, it did wreak havoc on my hair. In fact, honestly, Hawaii made me ugly! My hair was usually a mess from the convertible, and had salt in it from the ocean so it looked like I had a bad case of dandruff. You can't very well go swimming with make-up on (well you can, it just doesn't stay on - I tried), and I just always felt kind of grimey with sunblock. But oh well.

Anyway, we headed to our beautiful hotel - the Outrigger Waikiki. It's right on the beach, and only has valet parking, so it made our life super easy. Here's a stock photo from the web.

When we first got there, our room wasn't ready yet, so we went to Duke's, which is the casual beach front restaurant at the hotel. We sat down and ordered our first fruity tropical drinks, and relaxed. It was so very beautiful and peaceful - it opens straight to the ocean.

Here I am enjoying a "tropical itch." It came with a back scratcher, which I thought Pig would like. She didn't and was rather confused by it I think.

Our room was finally ready, and when I got there I couldn't believe that Max had actually booked an ocean front room, with a balcony. The view from it was spectacular. We were on the 15th floor, which was just perfect. Here are a few pics (more to follow). We actually took these a little later that day:

After we got settled in our room, we decided to change into our suits, walk around the beach, and maybe go for a swim. The water was so warm and clear! No gross seaweed floating around, no dirty seafoam water curdling at the edges of the beach. It was gorgeous. I couldn't remember the last time I'd actually gone swimming in the ocean. After our swim, we laid out on the beach and just napped for a little while. We were actually both trying to avoid tanning, so we had sunblocked ferociously, but even with that, the sun was pretty strong. We stayed out for a bit and then headed back to the hotel room. The thing is, when you have a really nice hotel room like the one we did, it's just as nice, if not nicer, to hang out in there as it is to hang out on the beach. Max bought a bottle of champagne and we just enjoyed the breeze and the sunset from our balcony. So relaxing.

Afterwards, we showered and got ready to go to dinner. Max had booked a reservation for the Hula Grill, which is another one of the hotel's restaurants, but is nicer than Duke's. We got a great table right on the patio overlooking the beach. I remember that I realized two things 1.) the temperature was perfect. Seriously perfect - not even the slightest bit too hot or too cold. It felt like the air around me was the exact temperature of my body. 2.) I was totally and completely relaxed, stress-free, and happy. I was completely at peace, in a way that I don't think I've ever been. Or at least not recently.

I didn't really take a lot of pics of dinner that night, mainly because it just seemed too much of hassle to drag out the camera. Max had a lovely surf and turf, and I had two appetizers - a ceviche and some lobster/scallop potstickers. Here's the one pic I have - a bit blurry since the sun was setting, and the place was lit with tiki torches and candle light.

All our nights ended pretty early - Hawaii is behind us by three hours, so we got sleepy at around nine. Max and I kept the balcony doors open at night, and drew only the shear curtains together so we slept to the sounds of the ocean. It was really really wonderful.


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