My Hawaiian Diary...
Oahu - Day 3
We started by going to breakfast at the Summery, a restaurant a block away. Macadamia nut pancakes with coconut syrup. Just what the doctor ordered. Then we met up with the Brasilians and went to the Kodak Hula Show, which was fun, especially when Walt decided to join the group learning the hula. I'm so glad Nelson got that on videotape!
Then the girls, who had gone to the beach early, wanted to take a shower, so we came back to the hotel and I did e-mail for a bit. We decided just to have lunch at Jack in the Box, so we did, and then went to Iolani Palace for the free tour that our e-mail buddy Ursula Harris had arranged for us. It was nice meeting Ursula and she gives a great tour. We enjoyed it thoroughly.
Nelson was looking for a second battery for his videocamera, so we decided to go to the Ala Moana Center, but went by way of Tantalus, where they could get those great views of Honolulu. Everyone loved it. The road up was every bit as beautiful as I remembered from our last trip here. Very much a "jungle," with a wide variety of shapes and colors and textures. Trees with long trailing vines that either hung over the roadway or wound around the tree trunks. Flowers in red, yellow or purple. Huge leaves, brown mosses. Some plants that would do justice to a Chtorran landscape. All absolutely wonderful.
Ended up at the Ala Moana Center, where just by chance we parked in front of a huge Japanese department store that had exactly what Nelson was looking for. We also did a lot of wandering around the center and Nelson discovered a patisserie that had some delicious pastries, both sweet and savory, and so we bought a couple of bags of them to bring to the hotel for dinner. I also found about 8 of David Gerrold's books in the bookstore.
Came home, did e-mail, and then went to Sergio and Rosangela's room for pineapple wine (which was surprisingly good), the pastries, and conversation in English and Portuguese. We ended the evening with the 6 of us going down and walking along the beach and just looking at the lights of Waikiki and enjoying each other, making plans for our trip to Brasil next year. I can't believe I actually got my feet wet and sand beneath my toes. It was great.
Last day on Oahu
Our vacation is coming to an end. Yesterday was another good day. Nelson decided that since it would our last day we needed to "make the most of it." I think we did. We started with breakfast in Nelson and Su's room, then got the cars and drove out to Pearl Harbor, where we met Mike Blackford and all took the tour of the Arizona Memorial--still moving even seeing it the second time.
Next we went to Zippy's, a restaurant across the street from Mike's house (and across the street from the Foster Gardens, which Walt and I had toured on our last trip here). I finally had some mahi mahi and Walt had fresh ahi. We said goodbye to Mike and headed over the Pali. The view was, of course, spectacular and Nelson declared it "the best yet."
Then down into Kailua to the beach which Nelson remembered from his weeks studying here. It was the most beautiful beach we'd visited. The water was such a vivid aqua it seemed almost unreal and almost hurt the eyes. The sand, in contrast to Waikiki's rather coarse tan-colored sand, was white and so fine it was almost like grainy talcum powder. And the water was gentle and good for swimming.
At the end of the relaxing afternoon, Walt was at McDonald's buying "McSaimin," which he brought back here to the hotel with him.
We went to dinner, all of us, at Denny's where Walt and I had Denny's mai tai's, which we figured was the epitome of tacky. And then back to the hotel. Rosangela and I actually had a conversation in Portuguese about how fast the time has gone and how we'll miss each other. I'm going to write to Sergio in English; he'll answer in Portuguese.
This morning we had breakfast in Nelson & Sus room and then a took a walk on the pier opposite our hotel to drink one last look at Waikiki and talk about what a good time wed had together. We went back to the room and said our goodbyes to all four Brasilians there. Then Nelson decided to go to the lobby with us and we said our goodbyes again (its hard to say goodbye to Brasilians). Walt and I headed off to The Pagoda Garden, where we met Ursula. The restuarant is a lovely little gem with pools of koi fish, little waterfalls, bridges, and Japanese tea houses, and the food was delicious and affordable. We had a good visit and talked about Gilbert & Sullivan, Savoynet, and the corrupt Hawaiian government.
At the end, we said our goodbyes to her and headed off to the airport, where we had an uneventful wait for the plane and an uneventful flight home. It was cool when we got back to SF and I was glad to feel the cool air when we got to the car.