Monday, November 9, 2009

Vacation in Hawaii

Part 2 - Hawaii
After 3 nights in Lahaina, Maui, we flew over to the big island of Hawaii for the next three nights. We stayed in Waikoloa at the Marriott, where my brother-in-law Elton is a manager, so we got fabulous rates! Plus we got to see Elton!
Now Waikiloa is a rather remote area of coastline about 45 minutes north of Kailua-Kona, but the area is just gorgeous. Marriott has done a beautiful job on the grounds, and the pools are spectacular and very natural-looking, one with a long flowing infinity edge. And you can swim 24/7! At night when the torches are burning it all looks and feels rather magical. We spent our afternoons poolside under a gazebo, swimming and resting, and ordering drinks and food poolside.
And when we felt like it, we'd go check out the alkaline ponds between the hotel and beach, which had all kinds of interesting fish and crabs and eels living in them. The beach is actually a bay called Anaehoomalu, and it is very picturesque, especially at sundown. Palms and sunset are always such a nice combination! And at certain times of the day, sea turtles come in close to the beach to feed, and eventually make their way up onto the sand or lava rock to sun themselves, and sometimes their brood of babies too.
We were originally going to take one day and head south to Kailua-Kona, where I lived for two years, and then on south to Kealakekua and the Place of Refuge, but it was really hot, and we didn't feel like using up so much time in the car when we could spend it with Elton or poolside.
The one thing we did do on the big island was to go up north to Kahua Ranch for a paniolo-style bbq, with fiddle playing, and line dancing, and roping for the kids, and branding, and adult beverages.... And during the drive up to the ranch, the van driver kept up a really good commentary about the history of the area and the ranch itself. The big draw for me to go up there and do this kind of thing, which doesn't really sound like me at all, is the fact that I know the family that owns the ranch; I went to school with the oldest son Tim who was in my class at HPA, and his younger brother John was still in grade school when I saw him last! John is the front man for these weekly events, and he really makes a good one! And his brother Tim came up that evening when he found out that I was there. It was a really fun evening!
And all in all, we really had a great time here too!

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