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Hawaii part 1 June 16, 2007

Posted by eric22222 in General.

Well, I’m back from Hawaii. For those interested it what went on, you may proceed to the lengthy, and at times well-written account of the past week. Part 1 ahead:

Day 1:
Early in the morning, we arrived at the airport and went through the standard (read: ridiculous) security measures and boarded our plane. I spent the entire flight on the first of four books I rented from the library. After less than half an hour, we had simultaneously reached our cruising altitude and began our descent. We got to Atlanta just in time for lunch.

The second flight was much longer, taking us over the length of the country. We were also served little snacks and drinks to keep us occupied a bit longer. Sometime during the flight, I finished my first book and started my second. I tried to read slowly so I wouldn’t run out of books. LA was our last stop before Hawaii. Nothing exciting happened here, so I’ll just move on.

The final flight provided much less scenery than the first two, but I didn’t mind. I was more interested in reading anyway. Shortly after the flight began, dinner was served. No, it wasn’t a cliche’ plane meal with which there is a deal to be pointed out in standup comedy. It was perfectly normal, consisting of a few strips of some unidentified meat, an orange paste of edible persuasion, and other delicious, albeit vague, side items. After dinner, I finished my second book, leaving me with little to do other than sleep. Well, sort of. Of the few things you can do in an airplane, sleeping isn’t one of them. What I was doing was more like a stupor. Whatever you call it, it passed a good deal of otherwise boring time.

I awoke some time later to see the tailend of the sunset. The sun had set much earlier on Gallatin and Knoxville, but we had chased it over the horizon, giving the star a bit of difficulty in escaping our view. It had bested the plane, though, and was now silhoutting a range of mountains somewhere in the middle of the Pacific. It all made sense while I was half-asle– er, half-astupor, but after my mind warmed up for a bit, I remembered that mountains generally preferred solid ground over ocean. What I was actually seeing was a range of clouds, several miles above the waters. The light behind was warm and red. I watched it fade into night for a few minutes, while my seat’s back found itself the target of a barrage of kicks.

Out of hundreds of seats, given random positioning, patterns are hard to come by. The chance that a particular individual will be sitting near you is slim, at best. But airplanes don’t follow the standard rules of Probability. And even if no fussy children came on the plane, you can bet through some intertwining of neighboring universes, there will be a loud, strong-legged kid sitting behind you before the flight is over.

Kicking aside, the flight was alright. We touched down in Oahu around 8:30 at night, which is 1:30 AM in Gallatin. I peeled myself from my seat. My bones made several objections: pop snap pop (what have you done to us), crack tick tick snap (help, I can’t feel my marrow), and so on. After renting a car and checking into our hotel, we finally got to have some real sleep in some very soft beds. You had to stay still to avoid sinking further into the pillows.

And the first (very long) day was over. We’ll see what the rest of the week holds.

Day 2:
The day began slowly, well aware that it was supposed to be starting, but putting it off. We all went downstairs to search for breakfast. I found a map on one of the walls, and determined which hall would take us to the hotel restaurants. We found a buffet and got in line. I ducked out to check important things like price and found 23 dollars would buy us a plate. Not for all of us, but for one of us. We opted out and searched for more sane breakfast costs. There was a Burger King across the street, which worked out nicely. We found a table by the beach to eat.

After breakfast, we walked to the nearby beach. We pitched our blankets between the palms and the ocean. Tanning isn’t something I really support. Not just the tanning bed kind, but the regular, out-in-the-sunlight kind, too. All you do is sit outside, allowing your skin to slowly bake. People think it makes them look more desirable, but it doesn’t. It makes them look like they’ve been at 350 degrees for two hours. Anyway, with not much better to do, we sat on the beach being bombarded with photons and radiation. Once the boredom was too much, Ashley and I stepped into the water. This was one of the few high points of the day. We saw a few tiny fish hovering around the shallow waters. Out deeper, I saw an unusual pattern in the submerged sand. Upon further inspection, I discovered they were shadows. Hundreds of tiny shadows. A school of white/silver fish had decided to loiter near the shore. Given the way their color nearly matched the sand below, it would have been easy to miss them entirely. We spent several minutes slowly walking around them. They seemed uninterested in us, unless we came too close. They maintained a 4 to 5 foot radius around us. When Mom and Ashley had tired of the beach, we went to the hotel to, well, tan some more.

After a short break, the three of us drove of to “explore Hawaii.” That, of course, means we’ll see some of the landscape on our way to shop. We drove around for a bit. I watched the mountains and sights with interest until Mom asked where we were. After a mild “you’re supposed to keep up with where we are,” I made sure to keep tabs on our position. I couldn’t see much from the back seat anyway.

We stopped at the Aloha Tower. That’s where Shopping happened. As I’ve told many of you before, it’s rare that I ever shop. Generally, I buy. Much simpler, easier, and painless. In all honesty, I would rather study the intricate patterns of a ball of twine and meditate on its uses than go through a session of Shopping. But this wasn’t my trip, and I was more than ready to undergo an intense Shopping for Ashley. After a few stores had been oohed and ahhed over, we went up to the top of the Aloha Tower. I had just enough time to snap pictures from the observation deck before more Shopping needed to be done. The tower had a lot of information on the sights visible from that 20th floor, but I had no time to read them.

After a long period of intense Shopping, we went to check out a large ship nearby. We found it was part of a museum. The whole thing looked pretty interesting to me, but after hearing there was about an hour’s worth of exhibits within, the girls decided it wasn’t worth the trouble. I knew Dad would’ve really liked the museum, and maybe if I had him weighing in on the issue we might’ve gotten to stay and check it out. Well, that depressed me a good deal, but I pressed on. I couldn’t help but wish Dad could’ve come. Since I can tell this line of narration would probably lead to a big, depressing emo paragraph, I’ll skip ahead a bit.

We arrived at the hotel just in time for, believe it or not, more tanning. I passed the time by reading a magazine that detailed all the nice hikes around the island that I wasn’t going to get to do. While I was checking that out, Mom asked me to flip through the pages and find a good place for dinner. I looked through the listed restaurants and found one that sounded pretty delicious (in the same way something can look fragrant, feel green, or smell loud). Mom said she had somewhere else she wanted to go for dinner. I took a minute to wonder why she asked me for my opinion in the first place. The job of navigation was once again handed to me. We ended up having Mom drop Ashley and I off to get a table while she went back to the hotel, parked the car, and ran over to the restaurant. Food was good, but nothing worthy of a lengthy, analogy-ridden description. I walked back to the hotel while the girls decided to close the night with some more Shopping.



1. Clifford (Grandaddy) Dobbs - June 16, 2007

Very fun read Eric. Looking forward to pictures. Thanks for giving us a good description to a trip to our 49th state. How did Ashley do? Hope to see you all soon. Love Granddaddy

2. Granny - June 18, 2007

Just received pictures of your trip. It’s hard to believe that someone could be bored in a place like that!
Love Ya,

3. Oregon (part 1?) « Eric Online - March 23, 2008

[…] from the much improved writing below, I bought a pair of Terry Pratchett books while in Oregon, and that always does wonders for my […]

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