Saturday, April 09, 2011


We're back in Japan after our week long, super-chillaxing vacay in Hawaii. Sometimes just stepping away for a few days really does help. That is until your back home and your mother-in-law knits her brows and tells your son it's going to rain his first day of school and since he has a 30-minute bike ride there and back he must dress head to toe in a rain coat, hat, and gloves as well. Why? Because all the radiation will be falling from the sky. I'm thinking ,where the hell are my flip flops and pina colada?!

Back to vacation.

Here are some random photos I pulled off my camera. No order and no story. It's kind of a sampling.

We stayed at the Hale Koa, a lovely military hotel with loads of chatty, friendly people. I had almost forgotten what it was like to say good morning to someone and have them answer back. On the down side people who work the registers in the PX should worry less about the state of their fingernails and more about the customer who's standing there grinning furiously at them. No complaints though. Top notch joint with two great restaurants.

Look! Trees!

Here's a sunset at Waikiki Beach, literally a 1-minute (if that) walk from the hotel. I tried to get out there every night to take pictures. Once -- much to the delight of everyone in the restaurant -- I had to bolt during a meal and run to catch it.

Here's another...

And here's one of my favs: my mom and cousin I-forgot-his-name. We all loved him though. He was funny (his timing superb), a fire spinner (somehow I don't think that's the correct word for it), and an artist. He was also very, very short. My mom is short and he had to stand on his toes to look taller than her. That's why she's laughing. That and his muscles. I've got more photos of her with hot Polynesian men than is decent.

Me and M. Riding in something going somewhere.

This little baby was served at the Barefoot Bar (on the beach, of course) and touted to be Hawaii's best Mai Tai. Everyone was drinking them. They were surprisingly stronger than I thought they would be. Very delicious though. The local beer wasn't bad either.

Hanauma Bay. Saw some amazing fish, took some photos of them (I need to get those developed). I also used up another one of my nine lives (a post in and of itself). But I'm not bitter (stupid undertow). Hanauma is breath taking. And you can see colorful fish as long as your arm.

I was worried because the forecast called for rain every day. But nope. Perfect weather. And speaking of perfect, one thing I learned about Hawaii is that all you havevto do was lift your camera, point and click. Perfect.

Remember I mentioned the Barefoot Bar? A great place to sit, read, write, stare at the waves or listen to the musicians who played short gigs during the afternoon and at night. After the luau (twice a week) all the dancers, singers and performers would come over and party with the guests here. I liked it better when it was quiet, near empty, so I stayed away from the luau parties. Although I did hear them until midnight or so. They sounded like fun.

At the Hilton next door they had fireworks one night. Of course, guests from all the hotels up and down the beach gathered to watch. They were nice, but seriously no one does fireworks like Japan.

Oh, and I thought I saw two famous people while there. One was Bill Gates. I could have sworn I saw him walking up and down Waikiki one evening with a very old woman (his mother?). Of course I'm probably wrong. But when I mentioned it, my mom insisted she saw him too. This ticked my dad off to no end because I didn't notify him earlier. I think he wanted to go shake the man's hand. Yes, I'm very glad I didn't mention it to him earlier.

Also saw this guy who I thought looked just like Donald Sutherland [Thank you! Pat for the catch. I had the show right (M.A.S.H.) but totally the wrong actor.]. No? No? He does, doesn't he?

Probably one of the biggest highlights though were the sea turtles. J and I absolutely loved them. We saw one in Hanauma swimming around and this here is Elizabeth. She was on the North Shore resting. They have volunteers that stay out there all day to make sure people don't harass the poor things. Despite that there was some nutcase local who was swimming around trying to "help" three other turtles onto the shore. The volunteers were trying to shoo him away but he wasn't having any of that. Sometimes people suck.

Both J and I decided we'd love to have jobs/enough money to enable us to sit out there and keep an eye on turtles. Don't tell anyone but he bought a really cool pair of pajamas with sea turtles all over them. I was pretty jealous, but since he saw them first and called dibs, I had to settle for a really adorable turtle stuffed animal instead. Not bitter.

Out of nowhere, this, my friends, is a noni. Loads of health benefits. Smells nasty!

And last but not least, the boy-child. Not sure he'd appreciate me putting his sun tanning pics up, so here he is on the beach the first night there. Jeans and long sleeves, soon shed for bathing trunks and short sleeves.

Did I mention how perfect the weather was?


MDK said...

There ya go, chasing off into the sunset again. lol! Great pictures. Elizabeth is Adorable. Glad it turned out really well for you.

JY said...

I really like Hawaii and glad you got to go and "refresh"!

Pat said...

What a lovely time you must have had - other than that undertow, of course! So did you snorkel? Did the hubby have a good time? That pic of the two of you is cute. And J is growing up handsome, Sista! Wouldn't it be nice if we could all just live in Hawaii? So, so beautiful...

Pat said...

BTW, are you perhaps thinking of Donald Sutherland?

Kappa no He said...

MDK, where I live I can only see sunrises over the sea (if I wake up early and drive over), so this was a lovely treat.

JY, I'm still thinking it wasn't long enough. Lol. If only the money had held out... ^^;

PAT! Donald Sutherland! YES! You are a genius. And that's probably why my dad told me he didn't look anything like Elliot Gould. Doh!

Motoki had a great time. He won the unofficial Best Tan Award. And, yep! we all got to snorkel. I was worried because while Julyan's been taking swimming lessons since he was seven they never officially teach the kids to tread water. He was a pro though, a regular 6 foot long fish.

And it would be so great to meet somewhere, anywhere. You should see all the food photos I took!

Hilary said...

Sounds and looks like you had a wonderful time. The drink looks yummy. ;)

Those turtles would be fascinating to watch.. great pic.

And that boy of yours is growing up.. sigh!

Beth Bartlett said...

Gorgeous pics, it's like a mini-vacation just looking at them! Ahhhhh.

Kappa no He said...

Hilary, they do grow up fast, don't they?

Beth, at the time I thought it was just perfect. But after coming home to real life I'm like, one more week would have been nice. ^^v

Gina said...

I loved reading about your Hawaii trip very much. I think it was really smart of your family to get away when you did. Even for a week or so, it was still a good thing to be able to get away. Especially with the food shortages and gas shortages we had here. My sons and I left Japan for 15 days. Right after the reactor problem happened. And when the start of the food shortages and gas shortages happened. I tell ya,it did us a world of good to be away for those 15 days. 15 days of not worrying about the air we were breathing, 15 days of not worrying about food shortages. And 15 days not to freak out every time the earth shook. So yeah just getting away even for a short time, does/did help. I'm glad you guys left too. Plus look at the fun you all had too. Definitely worth it. : )

Being back home in Japan. I'm glad to be back. I missed Japan terribly.

I loved the picture of you and the hubby. You're very pretty. And I do believe I see a dimple. ; )

And J is getting so big, and so tall.... and quite a cutie.

PS, that walk from the parking lot in Hanauma Bay is quite the walk, right? A nice down hill walking to get there, but leaving it's quite an uphill walk. ; ) And you made me smile because I swam with a turtle in Hanauma Bay for about 2 short minutes years ago, but it was an experience that I still think about to this very day. : )

PSS, sorry I left such a long comment.. gomen gomen.: )

NormalToEatPB said...

Oh man, I am so jealous - you all look so relaxed you look like you're melting :)