Sunday, July 8, 2012 — Phil’s birthday. Today, he is taking the day off so we can play tourist in Hawaii. We have plans to drive to Diamond Head, and travel on the coastal highways to find Nakalele Point Blowhole, not only in search of Blow Hole, but whales!
The morning started like all the mornings have since I arrived on Thursday afternoon. Overcast, gray clouds, bursting into circles of radiant sun peeping through the circles, teasing the skyline with morning. Every morning I rush to the balcony while Phil snores. I open the balcony door with my camera ready to capture the breaking morning sunshine and clouds. I didn’t buy Phil a birthday card after I arrived, thinking his birthday card that I mailed on Monday would make it for his birthday. It is Sunday and still it hasn’t arrived. I suppose mail is just a bit slow here. Maybe I should’ve sent him an electronic birthday card via e-mail. Oh well. All that matters is the fact that we are together on his birthday.
Last night at Paradise Cove his birthday was mentioned – not personally, but a group “Happy Birthday” to all in attendance celebrating birthdays.
I rush around, getting dressed for our first full day together since I arrived. After I am dressed, hair styled, makeup on, I awaken Phil. He moans. Silly guy. The older he gets, the more (and later) he sleeps. At home, he will sleep until noon. If he does that here, he’ll find himself all alone. I simply am not spending the entire morning in a hotel room! There’s too much to do, and if I have to walk, no problem. I am accustomed to walking!
Finally, I persuade Phil to get up. He appears to be in a grumpy mood. No surprise…he can certainly be a ‘grumpy ole man’ when he wants to be!
After he is dressed he inquires as to what we are doing today. I mention Diamond Head and I remind him that we need to set the GPS for BlowHole and other coastal locations. To be honest, my GPS (TomTom version 2.8) does not work well here in Hawaii! When I typed in Wal-Mart, it could not find it. Other locations I searched for, Mr. TomTom simply did not locate. This created a bit of stress with Phil and I so now, I will go down to the concierge’s desk to get directions. I do not wish to fight on my Paradise vacation! If Phil gets on my nerves, I’ll simply escape and go on my own!
After getting directions, off we go. Phil has a rental car – a SMALL Volkswagen that is uncomfortable! Nevertheless, we must use the car today. I struggle to buckle the passenger seatbelt. I have an extremely weak left wrist that does not flex easily so it is a battle to buckle and I have to use my right hand. Finally buckled, we are off. Perhaps I should write an automobile review about this car. On second thought, perhaps not! It is not comfortable! Yes, it has lots of get up and go, but comfort I don’t think the engineers considered, at least not for the passenger. The parking garages in this hotel, Hyatt Regency Waikiki, are a tight squeeze. Mirrors are placed in the corners so we can see approaching cars. I hold my breath in anticipation, fearful that some fruitcake in a hurry might hit us as we approach the exit. One thing I have noticed in the bit of time I’ve been in Hawaii – people do not appear to be in such a hurry, like they are in Charleston!
Phil and I have lived in Charleston since the early 1970’s. We’ve watched the growth in the areas, especially in Mt. Pleasant. A population of 10,000 when we moved to Mt. Pleasant, now the city has over 60,000+ residents. To say we are overcrowded is an understatement. I’ve seen many people lose their tempers in traffic. Road rage! Now, as I think about drivers in Charleston, I remind myself that I am in Honolulu, where people appear to be much nicer! Just maybe we will not have an accident inside a garage!
Right on cue, a car approaches. He stops. Waves to us. This would not happen in Charleston! Drivers would show the index finger, instead! I spoke with my pet sitter earlier, recognizing when it is 8am here, it is 2pm in Charleston. Sandy has reassured me the pups are fine and Shadow, my newest and youngest is rebelling by shredding the puppy papers on the floor! He’s also attempted to shred a rug on the breakfast room floor. Suppose I’ll need to trash it when I get home. Shadow is less than a year old so he is full of energy. He leaps like a deer, or a leap frog, jumping high into the air. He’s bumped my nose many times, and when he does, my entire head feels like it will burst. I must remember to block him and use the water bottle more often, just to make him realize he must behave. Puppies are a barrel of fun, along with a barrel of trouble!
We exit the garage. Mister TomTom directs our way, along with the print out from the concierge’s office. I do not trust TomTom. He’s disappointed me many times previously! When I get back to Charleston, I will upgrade it to get the latest roads and highways. Such a pain! Normally when I travel, I have a printed Google map with me, to compare the directions, but after attempting without success to locate Wal-Mart in Honolulu, I realize my GPS is almost an antique!
I watch the highways while Phil drives, reading the signs, attempting to pronounce the roads, without much success! We make a turn, finding the Honolulu Elks Lodge. “We need to come back and drop by the Elks Lodge before we leave,” I tell Phil. He grumbles. I’m certain we’ll never drop by. Phil doesn’t like going to places where he doesn’t know anyone. Just how we connected so many years ago is beyond me. I am gregarious and love making a statement when I enter a room. Phil loves to blend in. We are such opposites! Maybe I was a bit desperate at the time.
We are headed to Diamond Head. Now I really regret how I forgot to pack my “Things to Do in Honolulu” print out that is still resting on my printer – at home! I struggled to login to my computer at the hotel, but it would not allow me. I reminded Phil to do a print out from the list and he of course will “do it later.” Funny! Later never arrives. He is the king of procrastination, not to mention a pain___! So off we go, without a plan, with exception of the printed directions we have from the concierge’s desk. Oh well. My prayers are that we do not snap at each other while struggling to find our way. I’ve concluded Mr. Tom Tom does not like me, and neither does the other GPS I had but tossed away!
Now, we’re following a path where gorgeous homes within beautiful gates are on the roadway. I do believe you must be rich to live in Hawaii! These homes make me so envious, but when I go back to reality, I’ll be thankful for what I have. At least, I hope!
We continue our route, I am the navigator. Phil is the driver. Thank goodness he is not using that stupid I-phone GPS again. I think I’d grab it from his hand and toss it out the window if he pulled that stunt again. Before long, we hit the highway. I see mountains in the distance with lava rock. Diamond Head is just ahead. We pull over at an observation area and I step out to photograph the view. Words cannot describe all that I see, but it is truly a blessing just to inhale the fresh air, the gusty winds and to be thankful that I am having the opportunity to make another dream come true – another dream back to Hawaii and I am enjoying every moment. The mountains, and there are many! Take Diamond Head for instance. Considered one of the younger mountains of Honolulu, history states that it erupted quickly. The view from Diamond Head is gorgeous, although we turned back due to traffic. Regretting it now, I have made a promise to myself that the next time we go to Honolulu, one of the mountains we will visit is Diamond Head. I simply cannot wait to take pictures on Diamond Head. Silly me. Just why did I suggest that we turn around and head to Blow Hole? Sometimes I can be such a dummy!
Blow Hole has a special meaning to Phil and I. We saw it on our first tour of Honolulu, when we were newlyweds. Much to my surprise, I do not remember the beautiful scenic highway leading to Blow Hole that we are traveling on now. There are several observation points to stop and take photographs and we are hopping in and out of the car. On one observation point, I decided to get a bit gutsy and hike a bit. Phil discouraged me, but he knows me well. I simply would not listen to him. So off I go, clicking photographs, looking for whales, hoping that we will see one. Stopping to admire the view, I squeal – probably like a teenager. In the distance I see a lighthouse. Of course I had to get closer.
“Be careful,” Phil shouts. “You know how clumsy you are.”
“Ah-hush. Today I wore the proper shoes – my shapeups!”
I continued my hike until I came to an area that was forbidden. There I stood, taking several shots of the lighthouse. How I wanted to cross the path and get closer, but Phil would come after me. Fussing and grumbling!
Back in the car, we continue looking for Blow Hole. The view along the coastal drive to Blow Hole is truly amazing. It’s like I am traveling along the route to Heaven, and I’ve never been to Heaven. Not yet! Lava rocks are on the mountains. The pictures I am taking truly speak for themselves, so I suppose I’ll have to stop blogging and let my readers admire the beauty. Now, if only I could see a whale.
My next blog will discuss our evening events, walking to International Market Place, along with the characters we met, the street vendors and singers. How I wanted to join them in a tune!
Enjoy the photographs!