Tuesday, January 1st
Got up before 4:00 am, and by 5:15 we were at the airport and had checked in. Trip went smoothly, though security was tighter than usual. From Vancouver to Honolulu, L and I weren't able to sit together. The plane was full, and I ended up sitting next to a guy who had a cold, who coughed throughout the six-hour flight. I hope I don't catch what he had.
Arriving in Honolulu, we checked into our hotel. It isn't the place we stayed the last few trips, and it isn't as nice, but it is OK.
Went out for an early supper, then stopped at one of the ABC Stores to stock our fridge with bottled water, fruit juice and beer.
Wednesday, January 2nd
After breakfast, we arranged to move to another room. Our first room had two single beds, but we had reserved a double. The new room is quieter and has a better layout, too.
Visited the Queen Kapiolani Garden in the afternoon. We saw many types of hibiscus and other plants, as well as doves and monarch butterflies.
Thursday, January 3rd
Took the Circle Island bus to Haleiwa on the North Shore. Some great beaches there -- white sand, huge waves, lots of surfers. Saw two giant basking Hawaiian sea turtles on one beach. Want to rent a car later and explore this area more.
Friday, January 4th
Today we hiked to the top of Diamond Head. It is a fairly tough climb, and by the time we reached the top I was soaked in sweat. After we got back to the hotel, we loafed for the rest of the afternoon, and then went out to eat.
After dinner, we sat on the beach and watched the sun go down.
Saturday, January 5th
Cloudy and raining today. Went shopping. I bought a book The Hiker's Guide to O'ahu and a 4-port USB card.
Sunday, January 6th
Another cloudy day with occasional rain. This morning, walked through the surf along Waikiki Beach. In the afternoon, we went to Makapu'u Beach park. We had planned to explore a hiking trail, but spent our time on the beach instead.
Monday, January 7th
Quiet day. Walked along the Ala Wai canal, stopped somewhere for breakfast, then back to the hotel. Spent the afternoon lounging and sunbathing on the balcony.
Tuesday, January 8th
Rented a car and drove along the windward side of the island to the north shore, stopping frequently at scenic lookouts and beaches along the way. Tried a couple of the hikes in the book I bought the other day, without much success. We encountered "no trespassing" and "trail closed due to hazardous conditions" signs.
Wednesday, January 9th
Wanted to take it easy today, so we sat in Kapiolani Park, reading, and walked around a bit. Also went shopping, and I bought a pair of white 501 jeans.
Thursday, January 10th
Went for a walk around Diamond Head early this morning. I slipped on a trail leading down to the beach, skinning my left palm and acquiring some other scrapes and bruises. Dragged my clumsy self back to the hotel where L administered first aid. Then we went for breakfast. Took it easy the rest of the day. Did laundry. Watched the Survivor finale in the evening.
Friday, January 11th
Quiet day. Went to the Aloha Tower and had a plate lunch at a restaurant overlooking Honolulu Harbor.
Saturday, January 12th
We went looking for the "wizard stones" on Kuhio Beach. These are large blocks of lava that were "charged" by 4 kahuna priests. In the afternoon, we did a walking tour through historic downtown Honolulu.
Sunday, January 13th
Walked around Diamond Head today. Checked out the trail where I fell a few days ago. Apparently I stepped in a hole. We continued on down to the beach, walked along it, then scrambled up a crude trail back to the roadway and finished the walk around the crater.
They have something called Sunset on the Beach here on the weekend; there are booths selling local cuisine, tables are set up on the pier as a dining area, and after dark they show movies on a huge screen on the beach. We had dinner there -- pork, salmon, poi, rice etc.
It was very hot and sunny today, and I have some sunburn on my arms.
Monday, January 14th
Last full day here. Walked around Waikiki, then took a bus to Maunalani Heights to get a view of Diamond Head and the city from the foothills. Packed our bags this evening... a bit sad to be leaving.
Tuesday, January 15th
Our flight has been delayed by 5 1/2 hours. We will be arriving in Vancouver around 3:30 am, so instead of staying overnight and catching a noon flight back to Calgary, we have switched to a 7:00 am flight to Calgary. We spent a few extra hours in Hawaii, and will be getting back earlier, too. Only problem will be sleep.