Aloha, Mohalo

Honolulu: the home of $6.00 footlongs, and $9.00 peach bellinis’. We’ve  been here for 2 days now, and we’re adjusting to bare feet and squinty bright sun. Slowly, our pasty transparent skin is browning; the freckles are peaking out.

On our first day, we arrived in the early afternoon, and called for a shutte from the airport, paying a hefty fee to take our surfboards along. We plopped our bags and boards after checking in at the Marriott  near Waikiki Beach before ditching the socks and going for a stroll with our new Reef Fannings rubbing away the toe creases. The streets are borderline Tokyo busy, with crowds of locals, and tourists making their way to and from the shops and the beach. For dinner we had a beer and some appetizers at happy hour, saving a couple of bucks by doing so. Early dinner is recommended we’ve learned. We were bagged from the 3 hour time change and crashed by 9pm, or 1am at home.

Day 1: We wandered to and from the beach a few times today, looking for places, things, and just checking out the flavour of Waikiki. We got help with our itinerary from the hotel desk, then grabbed the snorkels before heading to the beach to check out the fish nearby. We did see some nice tropical fish hanging around the shallows: surgeon fish, a moorish idol, triggers, a couple of eels (neat but yucky), along with the usual and forbidden water items like socks, and spoons, and plastic. From there we hung out on the beach for a bit to catch some rays, then showered up and met up with the sunset crowds back on the beach. Our first wait for dinner near the beach was long, as we arrived at nearly 6:30. As a couple we could do the rush seating at the bar which we ended up doing after 45 minutes, instead of waiting for the tables to clear. The restaurants here are HUGE, with tonnes of tables, but everyone wants to eat at the same time, between 5 and 8.

Day 2: This morning we got up at a decent time and headed for the bus stop for the 1 hour trip across town to Pearl Harbour. On the way back it was so crowded on the bus that we stood the whole way, not enjoying invading other people’s personal space, or touching the dirtyhandles to prevent swaying into others. You always feel so dirty and germed up after getting off public transit, and maybe its psychological too, after eyeing up the other unsual folks riding along with you. Gross. It’s hard not to be a snobby germaphobe. I think we’ll limit our bus riding and rent a car for our other journeys’, and maybe  bicycle.

Pearl Harbour was pretty neat, we went into the submarine and onto the battleship, but skipped the memorial because of the tour groups long waits to get over there. We did take a bunch of photos out there. Tourist lunch today consist of a hotdog and ice cream; making us that much more groggy on the bus ride home. Thoughts and discussions for the afternoon suggested surfing, but we were exhausted from the earlier activities and warranted a nap instead. We went for dinner early this evening to the Cheese Cake Factory where I unhappily and unknowingly spent $9.00 for my bellini. Yesterday I turned down the drink opportunity at $8.75! How can people (except maybe me) get loaded on one $9.00 drink?

Speaking of which, while walking down the beach near sunset, we did some more photo taking, and some people watching, but one guy stuck out to us. He was collapsed on the sand for unknown reasons, although assumably alcohol intoxication. But, if this guy was your dad or your friend, would you want hundreds of people walking by and staring at him, instead of asking if he was okay? No. And he looked dishevled but not homeless, and unwell with puffy, red, sick old people ankles and scabs on his arms. From a far I could tell he was breathing. A bonus, but we didn’t want to poke him or get too close just in case he was a grumpy drunk. And because of where he was lying (at the foot of a crowded stage where on lookers were gawking) and incase it was a medical issue, we went to the nearby police desk and passed along the story.

The cop came over (after telling us we should have called an ambulance, which I didn’t think was entirely necessary at this point), and helped the guy walk (hobble and stagger) to a better location. He could barely stand on those aweful looking ankles, and refused medical help, but at least I didn’t ignore him like everyone else to assume he was a drunk. What about diabetic coma people? With those ankles it could have been probable. Wasn’t there an email going around recently about people stranded after an accident or a robbing or some traumatic event and everyone drives by assuming the person is ok, when actually no one stopped to checked on them. How pathetic. In such a busy place,we couldn’t just leave him where he was. The other drunk guy passed out under a tree? Well, he looked like one. He looked fine.

Tomorrow, is surf day. I probably won’t sleep.

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