REALLY SHORT VERSION:
12/26 – Flight to Honolulu, HI. (Island of Oahu.) Arrive at sundown. Drive to estate in Hau’ula, rented by my brother and his wife for the family. 27 of us in all! Surprise extra apartment has us re-doing room assignments. All done, all in, all good.
12/27 – Getting settled. People trying to adapt to time zone 5 hours behind. Walked to beach 3 blocks away, with extended family (East shore). Much wading in the Pacific, as waves too strong to let the kids swim. Kids, mine and their cousins, spent much of the day in the estate’s hot tub (with the heat turned off).
12/28 – Attempted to go to Souvenir shop that’s open 10am-7pm each day. Nope. Guess that’s island time. Polynesian Cultural Center with the extended family, including buffet dinner and HA: Breath of Life show (not a luau)
12/29 – Took just my 2 girls to a kid friendly, supposedly swimable, beach: Kuilima cove / Kawela Bay. Which is maintained by the Turtle Bay Resort. But it was North shore in Winter. Even with the coral reef wave break, the waves were the same as on the beach on the East coast. Amber swam in the safe area. Went to Ted’s Bakery, Souvenir shop.
12/30 – Woke up very late. Felt sick. My girls and I tagged along to Waimea Falls. SO glad we did. Everyone my generation and younger was in the water at some point (except Michael). More to write about here…. Back to Ted’s Bakery. Private Luau for extended family back at the rented estate. We had a Hula lesson too!
12/31 – Scuba diving (Aleese, Susan, Rebecca, and I). There’s a whole story I need to write up here…. Kids go back to Polynesian Cultural Center, then swimming in pool at Dad and Colette’s hotel. Rich heads home.
01/01 – Packing and leaving the estate. Good-byes to extended family. Moneca, Steve, and their kids head home. Spend the day with the German/Lamberts. Tantalus Lookout. Check in to hotel. Lunch, Waikiki beach, Dinner, Dessert, say good-bye to German/Lamberts.
01/02 – Check out of hotel. Pineapple smoothie – finally! Just my 2 girls and I to the Aquarium. Back to beach to put feet (and hands) in the water before we head home. Mad dash through shops trying to find a dress I want as my main souvenir (besides spoon and magnet, of course). Catch shuttle to airport. Meet up with Dad, Colette, Joy. Then Jay, Aleese and Susan too. Home we go, on the red eye.
- Bonnie, Frank, and Sherri went on to another island.
- Michael, Rebecca, and Kathryn went on to Kawaii, and then the Big island.
- I don’t know when Sherrone, Rick, Nate, and their children headed home. It was either 01/01 or 01/02.
Oh, did I mention the wild roosters? Apparently chicken are to Hawaii as stray dogs / cats are to the Mainland. Every, Single, Morning: About 5am (Sun rises about 7am): The rooster next door began crowing. Did so about every 10 to 20 minutes for 1.5 hours. Took a day or two before I realized all the roosters in the area were crowing back and forth to each other. One of them started it each day, then it was like dogs barking back and forth to each other across the distances, except it was roosters.
4 rainbows in all. Have to put them in their respective days.