Aloha Family and Friends!
Happy belated New Years! We wish all a very happy and healthy 2019!
I thought it was time to catch up on our travels. We had a wonderful Christmas season and were fortunate enough, again, to secure a “job” in Oahu kittie sitting for some friends of our youngest daughter, Katie. So, we were able to spend the holidays with her, her boyfriend Mike, and our grand puppy, Roxy. We are so grateful that we were able to manage the trip!
We’d like to share some highlights offering suggestions for those who may be thinking of traveling to Oahu. Because we have been there before, we have visited Pearl Harbor Memorial several times. This is a must see! Start with the Visitor Center and be sure to include in your day the USS Memorial Arizona. I would suggest that you allow about six hours to take full advantage of this opportunity.
And, it’s also fun to attend a Luau. Look on Trip Advisor to find the best one for you as they are all similar, yet different. Very touristy thing to do, but we suggest you do it anyway. You won’t regret it!
There are various activities to participate in including whale watching, surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding, etc. There are many adventures to take advantage of. On the day we arrived, it was Ken’s 70th birthday and our 44th wedding anniversary and we started our day by hitting Kailua Beach for a spectacular sunrise. We had seen many glorious sunsets before but had never gotten up early enough for the sunrise. Great way to start one’s day!
We had a yummy dinner with Katie and Mike to celebrate the occasion. It could have become disastrous. Mike ordered marlin with a cream sauce. The waitress never mentioned that the sauce had lobster in it! Mike is highly allergic! Luckily when his plate was served, the server mentioned, “here is your marlin with lobster sauce”. Thank God! Ken and Mike flip-flopped their plates and problem was solved, disaster averted.
Since we always like to try new things, I happened upon an interesting activity through Airbn. Kahale & Uncle Bruce’s Kuleana, Responsibility and Well-being! It is a 4 hour opportunity to meet with local farmers (Kahale and Uncle Bruce). It was presented as an opportunity to learn the history of Manoa, local legends, and how this family and farming group are ensuring the perpetuation of Hawaiian culture. We were to bring gloves, other tools would be supplied if needed, and we would be involved in some type of activity which could be planting, removing invasive species or even helping with an event, if one was planned near or on the day we visited.
So we bought our tickets and headed to see Uncle Bruce. It was a rainy morning and windy. Because of the rain, we actually didn’t do any activity to help them. That was disappointing but we enjoyed learning so much about farming, insights into HI traditions, history and culture. Knowledge is being handed down generation to generation to ensure that traditions, history, and family continues to appreciate and protect the land.
They taught us to chant, a chant that is used prior to entering the land, asking for permission to enter. Ken, Katie, and I tried (somewhat awkward) but when Kahale chanted in the correct way, it was so moving we were actually brought to tears. Not kidding here. The day was wrapped up with a luncheon that included local foods and special tea made by “Auntie “. We truly enjoyed our time with them. It was an honor to meet them and for them to share so much with us.
Katie, Ken, and I hiked trails in Haleiwa Forest. Katie had only hiked there once before. (Please note that the trails are not well marked so ensure you know which trail you are on and where you are heading.).
There were vistas overlooking the ocean. At one of the vistas, we could see a rainbow in the ocean. That’s right a rainbow in the ocean! There were surfers in the water and they had no idea they were in a rainbow! The only way you could have seen it was from an airplane or from a vista like ours! Certainly a once in a lifetime event.
While Katie and Mike worked, Ken and I hiked Manoa Falls in Honolulu. It was a bit muddy but they had public hoses for these completing the hike and returning to their cars. The reward at the top, was Manoa Falls! Well worth the hike up. The hike down was super easy.
This is a great hike for all ages. You do have to watch children carefully because of the drop offs and slippery mud but it was a pleasure to hike.
Kenny and I had a wonderful Christmas at Jane and Drew’s home. Remy (our daughter’s friend from forever) and her boyfriend Dan joined Kenny, Mike, Katie, Roxy and I for an intimate relaxing Christmas dinner to which all contributed. Thanks Jane and Drew for allowing us to watch your precious teen kitties so that we had a wonderful Christmas in your beautiful home!
Until next time we raise our glasses and toast to my recently departed brother, Paul Slavis:
We are saddened that your life ended too early and we have been able to travel and have adventures that you haven’t. Hug Sabrina close and say Hi to all of our relatives and friends that you recently joined. I wish I had been a better sister to you.