Thursday, November 15, 2007

Hawai'i- Week 1

I managed to sell off most of my worldly belongings, including my car, truck, and motorcycle in about a week’s time. My truck sold on Monday Nov. 5th (A big thanks to Stan and Jacklyn at Davis GMC Buick in Westminster) and I purchased my one-way airfare to Honolulu the same day.

(All the vehicles left behind)

I got a ride from Dad super early Tuesday morning (Thanks Dad!) to the airport. After two long flights, first to Phoenix and then Honolulu, I made it to Oahu in the early afternoon. The plan was get my luggage, pick up my rental car, drive to Kailua in rush hour traffic, and meet Julie at her work as she got off at 5pm. The plan changed a little when Julie surprised me by meeting me at the airport. It was a really nice surprise and included a traditional Hawaiian lei. Julie and I spent some time in Honolulu and then headed to the MCBH (Marine Corps Base Hawaii) where we would be staying with her friends Jen and Dean.

Julie has been here for almost a month, but didn’t have a car and hasn’t seen much of the island. On Wednesday we took the “long” drive up to the north shore of Oahu, only about an hour or so each way. We had a fun day checking out all the famous surf breaks and local shops. Instead of coming back down the coast, the way we drove in, we decided to take the “highway” through the mountains and see some other sights. The only real stop on this leg of the journey was at the Dole pineapple plantation. We took the tourist train ride around the plantation and tried some Dole whip pineapple soft serve ice cream, that in the end didn’t agree with either of our stomachs. It was another long fun day, and I was a bit exhausted to say the least.

(Juile loved the Dole plantation)

(Julie loves her pineapples!)

On Thursday we slept in, did some internet work (i.e.: apt shopping, car shopping, and job hunting), and then took a nap. It was afternoon before we left the house, but it was yet another beautiful day in Hawaii. We picked up some surfboards at the shop Julie works at, Kailua Sailboards and Kayaks (KSK), and headed off to find some surf. We ended up at the Ala Moana Park in downtown Honolulu. After a long paddle out past the reef Julie and I waited for quite some time, as the lull between wave sets was considerable. In about two hours time I managed to surf 4 waves, of four that I tried to catch. Julie caught her first wave in Hawaii and was instantly hooked on surfing. She caught a few more waves and in the process managed to lose the fin off her board, which made standing on the board very difficult. After the surf session we drove around Waikiki and checked out the sites. We had dinner at the Spaghetti factory in Honolulu, a very cool restaurant.

The plan for Friday was to get up early and go snorkeling at Hanauma Bay. It was a beautiful drive along the southern tip of Oahu, but the wind was blowing and the visibility for snorkeling would not have been all that good. We continued the drive around to Diamond Head and Waikiki. The Diamond Head hike was quite fun and offered up amazing views of Waikiki and Honolulu. After a refreshing Hawaiian shave ice we tried to find our way back to the Pali Hwy and back to Kailua. On the way we stumbled across one of the two main kayak shops in Hawaii, “Go Bananas”. We stopped in and I talked kayaks with the owner for a while and filled out an employment application. Julie and I were quite hungry after our adventures so we found a Safeway that was having its grand opening. We managed to get enough free samples for a solid lunch and only had to purchase some bread and drinks. Back in Kailua the wind was still blowing and Julie went out for a quick windsurf.

(View from atop Dimond Head towards Honolulu)

(Julie windsurfing in Kailua)

Julie headed back to work on Saturday morning and I got up with her ready to find some work myself. My goal for the day was to find a place for us to live as well as some employment for myself. I also kept an eye out for any good deals on a cheap vehicle. Sadly I came up blank on all fronts. I did get a chance to hang out at the beach in Kailua for a while though and check out the kiteboarding scene. I have a feeling that kiteboarding will soon be my main Hawaiian recreation. I also got a good feel for the town of Kailua and visited many shops, both to check them out and search for employment opportunities. Julie and I rented Spiderman 3 and want everyone to know how much of a waste of time that movie is. It is not worth the $1 rental fee we paid!!!

Sunday was another day of work for Julie and another day of research for me. I did manage to find an apartment or two, but was unable to get calls back from any of them. I was also able to drop off a few resumes around town and talk to the owner of “Twogood Kayaks” here in Kailua. After Julie got off work we headed over to the local hangout, The Shack, with her friend and coworker Molly. After dinner and a few drinks we hung out at a local house party for a while and got to know a few of the locals.

On Monday I put in another long day at the computer researching places to live, jobs, and cars while Julie worked at KSK.

Tuesday was a grueling day with me filling out online applications and doing more internet research for a large majority of the day. I did manage to squeeze in a solid 30 min. run before picking Julie up from work. After getting cleaned up Julie and I went out to Pinky’s, a local pub and restaurant. The food was solid, but nothing special, but the mixed tropical drinks were amazing. For six bucks you got a huge goblet of fine rum with a little fruit juice for flavor. Julie was quite happy after her one goblet of goodness☺

Wednesday we got up early and headed down to Hanauma Bay with one of Julie’s co-workers, Audrea, for some snorkeling. It was tons of fun and we got to see a lot of fishes. The place was crowded and the water wasn’t all that clear, but it was still quite amazing. It was a little overcast though and I got REALLY cold after only about an hour in the water. We checked out some apartments and rested up for most of the rest of the day. Hopefully we have found our place and will be moving in on Saturday, keep your fingers crossed!!! I also have a job interview tomorrow and a solid lead on a car that I will probably purchase on Friday, when I have to return the rental car.

Summary after 8 days in Hawaii:
-EVERYTHING is extremely expensive!!!
-Jobs pay much less here than on the mainland.
-The only whitewater on the island is class 6 creeking during serious flooding.
-Decked boat “surf kayaking” doesn’t really exist here.
-The weather is always nice, but expect rain every day.
-Hawaii is going to be an adventure (that I’m glad I’m sharing with Julie)!

PS- My future posts on this blog will not be the novel that this one was:)
PSS-Check out more photos at:


Lauren said...

Bryon, I'm so happy that you are with Julie in Hawaii! I will definitely be checking the blog every week. Give Julie a HUGE hug for me!!!

Andrew said...

Good times bro. Good luck in the pacific and give me a shout if you make it back to the west coast anytime soon. Shred hard!