Hawaii

Hawaii! Sunny, sandy, pineappley.

Saturday I arrived in Honolulu, entering the US after four and a half months of being away. It was also two hours after everyone received an incoming ballistic missle alert. So settling down felt like this:

I also crossed the international date line, so now I’m in the past. I left Sydney the evening of the 13th and arrived in Honolulu the morning of the 13th. I’ll miss being in the future.

I met my family there to watch the Eagles game. I didn’t know they were coming, so it was a surprise! The Eagles didn’t turn the ball over to the Jacksonville Jaguars like some other teams, so they get to advance.

For dinner we went to a Korean BBQ place, and later I found a beach bar.

Sunday I went to the beach with my Aunt and Uncle.

Monday we rented a car and went to Pali lookout.

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Then we drive up to Sunset Beach, and The Pipeline to see the giant waves. They did not disappoint. The waves looked small until we saw surfers stand up on them, giving them scale. The waves were easily twice the height of the surfers.

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We also stopped at a food truck called the Shrimp Shack and had tasty shrimp.

I came back and watched the sunset.

Tuesday we went to Lenard’s bakery to get their Malasada donuts. They were recommended by serval people and were delicious.

Then I met my friends who also came to Hawaii.

Wednesday we went to Pearl Harbor where we saw the Arizona memorial.

We also saw the Battleship Missouri museum where Japan surrendered to the Allies, ending World War II.

And and the Bodwen, a World War II submarine.

Thursday we went snorkeling in Hanauma bay and saw many different fish in the reef near the beach.

Next we flew to Hilo on the big island where we had an Ken’s pancake House.

Sunday we watched the Eagles game. It turns out the Eagles are pretty good so they get to play one more game. Something about superb owls. My neighbor from home is going to the game 😀

Despite what I had read, the government shutdown closed volcano national park, which was incredibly frustrating. Just flip the 12th please. Or whatever district it ends up being.

Monday we drove over to the other side of the island for a luau. They cooked a pig in the ground for dinner. It was prepared suspiciously fast, so we were probably eating last night’s pig. It was still delicious.

There was also a show, showcasing different Pacific dances and cultures.

Tuesday they reopened the government, so we were able to see Volcano National Park. We went on a short lava tube hike.

Then we went out to see the Sea Arch.

On our way to the Arch was a scenic drive.

Then we had some Hawaiian pulled pork for dinner and went to see the crater at sunset.

And then suddenly the only thing left on my travel plan was the flight home. So I hopped on my trusty steed, the Airbus A330, and went east one more time. I guess it’s not really “round the world” until you complete that last segment. I arrived in Pittsburgh on time and under budget, in the best but rarely followed tradition of software engineering.

The list of places I’d like to visit is longer now than it was before I left in August. Conveniently I think I could connect most of them in one big round the world trip. The first draft of that looks something like this:

  • Iceland
  • Machu Pichu, Cuzco, Peru
  • Padagonia, Buenos Ares, Argentina
  • Cape Town
  • Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
  • Clombo, Sri Lanka
  • Mumbai, India
  • Udiapur, India
  • Rishikesh, India
  • Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Chaing Mai
  • Pai, Thailand
  • Phuket
  • Koh Toa
  • Koh Phi Phi
  • Columbo, Laos
  • Cambodia
  • Myanmar
  • Hanoi, Vietnam
  • Ho Chi Min
  • Singapore
  • Lijang, China
  • Gulin, China
  • Yangshuo, China
  • Furong City, China
  • Beijing, China
  • Soeul
  • Kyoto
  • Bali
  • Perth
  • Melbourne
  • Fiji
  • Tahiti
  • Pittsburgh

Until then, safe travels!

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