Sunday, March 02, 2008

Saturday February 16--Oahu

After a luxurious night at the Laie Inn, we got up early (again) and headed back to Honolulu. We went straight to Pearl Harbor to get in line and get tickets to see the memorial. The line was already huge when we got there, but we managed to get on the third boat out to the memorial. There's a mini museum you can walk through while you wait for your boat, and we got headsets to listen to the audio tour (thanks for the recommendation Lara!) There were lots of Navy sailors around, which of course I loved. Maybe I'm biased, but the Navy and Coast Guard have the best dress uniforms, in my opinion. I love sailors! So adorable. Anyway, the memorial was very humbling. It's crazy to see the oil on the surface of the water--apparently the Arizona leaks 1-2 quarts of oil everyday. That's nuts. Lots of people left leis, so I left mine too. It was very cool to be there.

We had time before we needed to be on the ship so we went to the swap meet at Aloha Stadium. In true swap meet fashion, the booths started to repeat themselves after 10 booths or so. I did get some souvenirs, and if I had more room to take more stuff back, I probably would have gotten more than just a few necklaces and such.

After the swap meet we headed over to Hanauma bay to snorkel, since we had heard such great things about it. The bay is a national preserve, so you have to pay to even get down to the beach, and they make you watch this video about how to protect the reef. We did see some really cool fish, but the tide was going out, and so swimming over the reefs was kind of tricky. The whole time I was sucking my stomach in because I thought I would scrape it on the reef. Scary. Gorgeous beach, though, and beautiful clear blue water. It would be in the parking lot here where I would sustain my first injury of the trip. We changed into our swimmy suits in the car, and while getting mine out of my suitcase which was on the ground behind the car, Roger's old school, no wheels suitcase fell out of the back of the car and FELL ON TOP OF ME. I had a nasty bruise on my left arm, and even though you can't see it anymore, it still hurts when you touch it.

Sufficiently salty and sandy, we headed back to return the car and wait for the shuttle service I arranged to come pick us up and take us to the cruise ship. I found the company on the airport's website. It was ridiculously cheap, and they seemed to be very flexible when I called. Well, little did we know what we were in for! The regular shuttles were busy apparently so the owner of the company showed up in his own Escalade to take us to the ship. "I do for you so you be happy with service!", he said. Unbeknownst to us, we were traveling with "America's Craziest Cabby". I've ridden with some pretty crazy drivers in my day (Jeff Call, I'm looking at you) but this guy takes the cake. But the whole ride he boasted how he's never had a ticket or violation of any kind. I guess he's filming some kind of hidden camera show. He even had a little photo book of all the celebrities he's driven around. Apparently just before he picked us up he gave Chelsea Clinton a ride. Oooooh. How exciting. So we check in for the cruise and check out our stateroom. Not bad, bigger than I was expecting. Derrick and I got the double bed (two twins pushed together) and Evelyn got one of the top bunks on the side. She opted out of the ladder and went straight for hopping on the desk to climb up. Pretty impressive. I had been pretty pumped for all the food, which I heard was really good. However, we were sorely disappointed. The food was a serious let down. The buffet was only mediocre, and closed at 9pm. What's up with that??

We went to the welcome show that night, and met our horribly annoying cruise director Shona. We walked around the ship, checking everything out, not finding anything really exciting, and decided to go to bed.

Tomorrow: Hilo!

No comments: