Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Hawaii Trip Report #2

5 JUN 07

I’m under self-imposed pressure to blog about this before the memories become less clear. Ain’t that just the way of things? Thank goodness for pictures, which I hope to post soon.

After the amazing coincidental meeting with my long lost cousin, my wife and I checked into a fabulous room overlooking the ocean and Mauna Loa Park. The word “idyllic” comes close. Every day was paradise. We often joked about how long we’d have to live there before the perfection of every day became routine. Oh, look. Another rainbow. Meh.

Rather than bore you with details that only my wife and I will find interesting, let me share a few quick things with you:

- If you go to Hawaii, fly to the big island and visit the volcano. At first it seemed flat and uninteresting, but the more we wandered, the more it felt really foreign. It’s almost like we were visiting another planet. You really see the awesome power of nature and if you have a decent imagination, you can hear the explosions and see the lava carving the earth.

- Pauly and Otis have talked about the differences between being a traveler and a tourist. While the former sounds romantic, there is a reason tourism exists, and it’s for people like us. In that vane, if you must do a lu’au, do the one at the Polynesian Cultural Center. Nuf said.

- Buy a Hawaiian shirt at Hilo Hatties. Make sure it’s Rayon. Wear it. You may never get another chance (unless you live in Florida or Vegas).

- Snorkel in Haneuma Bay. Wear SPF 50. Apply it before you leave your hotel room and at least once more during the day. If you want to save a little time and money, rent your snorkel gear before you get there.

- I’m plus/minus about the dinner cruise we took on the Navatek I. It’s a very cool ship and dolphins were racing along the bow. The food was passable (barely), but the guitarist was awesome. There were Hawaiian dancers, too, if you go for that sort of thing.

Here’s an observation. Hawaiian girls have their own beauty, but as a rule, they didn’t do it for me. Give me an Hispanic woman any day. Uh, I mean, my wife outshone them all.*

It all comes down to the epiphany I had while walking on the beach. We all want to be known for something, and this is my something. You can inscribe it on my tombstone, and I intend to use it if I’m ever asked to give a toast:

“Throughout your life, may you know what you’ve got while you’ve got it.”

* She really did.

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