Sunday, April 12, 2009

Aloha Oe!

Aloha!! I found out I was going to Hawaii on the day of the "big" snow. I was dreaming of palm trees watching the swirling snow pile up. I actually "won" this trip to Hawaii - my company has a program where people can be nominated and then are chosen based on the nominations. I am not the first person in my group to win. Several years ago when Valerie won, Tiki came into her possession. Exactly where Tiki came from is a bit mysterious. Right before Valerie left, she was tasked with taking Tiki to Hawaii and taking pictures of him. When my boss won, Tiki showed up again. So I shouldn't have been surprised when Tiki showed up again with an ultimatum for me to take him with me to Hawaii.

With Tiki in my suitcase, I set off for Hawaii. I met Jana at the airport and we were off!! Except the bus had a flat tire. A new bus came for us and then we were off! We checked in and got directions to our room - across the lawn, up to the eighth floor, down the hall, down to the 3rd floor, across the breezeway, and then down to the second floor. Whew! We made it! We checked out our room and unpacked before heading back to the lawn for dinner. We were still pretty tired so after dinner we walked around and then headed back to our room.

The next morning breakfast was on the lawn and I got my picture taken as a "winner". We spent the rest of the day moving between the beach and the pool. During our time in the pool, Jana's sunglasses went missing for the first time. We circled back around the pool and found the glasses. I reapplied my sunscreen several times, but as it turns out it wasn't quite enough. Although, as sunburns go, it wasn't too bad. That night was a dinner where we were treated to fire dancing as the entertainment - it was great!

Thursday we spent the morning on a tour of the island. The guide's jokes were so bad that I barely laughed, and I pretty much laugh at anything. Our first stop was up in the mountains. It was at the second stop, at the aquarium, that Jana's sunglasses went missing for the second time. We walked back through the aquarium and found the sunglasses! Our next stop was at a plantation where they grow different fruits, including pineapples! After our tour we walked down to the shopping center near the hotel and did some shopping before heading back for the barbecue dinner.

Friday was snorkel day! We took a catamaran out to a cove. When we first started out, the captain warned us it was best to put our belongings, including our cameras, away since it was pretty windy so most likely we would get things wet. And then we came across a school of dolphins!! The dolphins were doing flips in the air, showing off for us, and me without my camera!! I'm never without my camera!! I ran back to get it but it was too late, the dolphins were gone. We made it to the cove and began our snorkeling adventure - wow!! It was incredible! The fishes, the coral - everything was amazing. Except when I got a little too close to the coral and scratched up my legs. Oops! I kept my camera with me on the way back but no dolphins. Oh well. We spent the rest of the afternoon in the pool. That night was a luau. It was really fun!

Saturday was a free day. I hadn't been feeling well the entire time (when I came home, I went to the doctor and found out I had bronchitis) and it came to a head Saturday morning. I stayed in the room, taking it easy, while Jana went to the pool. We met back up for our massages, which were fantastic! I was feeling much better by then and we spent the rest of the afternoon playing in the pool. We walked down the beach and found a restaurant where we could eat overlooking the ocean. As we were leaving the restaurant Jana realized she didn't have her sunglasses. They had turned up every other time, I wasn't too worried. Sure enough, we found the sunglasses!

Sunday it was time to say goodbye. Maui was amazing!!! I can't wait to go back!


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