September 13, 2011

The Big Blue and a Luau Too! (Honeymoon pt. 1)

Ahh, the Honeymoon. Jase and I went to Oahu, Hawaii for about six days. We left Sunday morning and arrived at beautiful Waikiki Sunday evening. We were pretty worn out from the trip and didn’t really have time to do a lot, so Jase and I took a stroll around the main street by the beach and I introduced Jason to the ABC stores (my favorite).
Monday, we took a long taxi ride to Hanauma Bay – one of the most well-known places to go snorkeling. I had been there before and wanted to make sure Jason went and was able to explore some of the marine life. The state of Hawaii requires every guest to watch a short film about safety and preserving the life of the fish and other creatures. Jase and I waited in line to rent our snorkeling gear (mask, snorkel, and fins) and we also bought an underwater camera‒ the pictures didn’t come out to great though. 
Hanauma Bay
Snorkeling was amazing! After I practiced using my gear a little bit, we swam further out and immediately saw fish. We saw fish of all different colors and sizes. I personally didn’t see a huge variety because I didn’t go out very far, but when Jason did a little swimming around on his own, he was sure to tell me about all the awesome fish he saw.
Jason snorkeling
After spending a couple of hours at the Bay, when took a very long bus ride home (we went the long way home). For dinner, Jason and I went to The Cheesecake Factory, which is walking distance from our hotel. I ordered pasta and Jase got pizza. Don’t make fun of us, but we were too full for any cheesecake. But we did get a Pina Colada in a pineapple! Delicious!

On Tuesday, Jase and I went to Pearl Harbor. This was another long bus ride, but we were on a tour bus which meant no stops and more comfortable seats. Again, I had been there before, but it was such a long time ago it was like going for the first time.

We took a short ferry ride to the Arizona Memorial which is built above and across the actual sunken Arizona Ship‒ so you can look over the railing and see parts of it just below the surface of the water. It’s amazing that the ship is still leaking oil. You can see little puddles of liquid color floating to the surface of the water. At the very back of the memorial there is a wall with all of the names of people who served on the ship. It was pretty surreal to stand over an underwater cemetery of so many men that lost their lives in defending our country from the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Entrance to the Arizona Memorial
On the Arizona

A part of the ship 
Some of the Oil that still leaks
The Memorial Wall
 Next, Jay and I took a short ride to the Missouri or “Mighty Mo”. This ship survived the war and was brought back to the U.S from Japan. We went inside this ship and it felt like forever until we got out‒ we didn’t realize how large the ship was below the decks. It was pretty neat to see how the men and women lived in such tiny spaces.
In front of a section of the Mighty Mo
Where the men and women slept
One thing about this ship that kept getting to me, and it’s kind of silly, was each time I saw a mailbox. I’ve thought before about how I would feel if Jason was in World War II and our only way of communicating was through letters. I can only imagine how those men and women must have felt so lonely – or even today with our soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. It just became more of a reality to me to be on the ship. When we passed one of the mailboxes, I said to Jason, “This is where you would seal your letter to me, kiss it, and send it.”

From Pearl Harbor, we drove through Punch Bowl Cemetery where many soldiers were buried. I hated seeing the grave stones marked “Unknown”. It’s heartbreaking. We then drove through Honolulu and saw things such as the capital building and where Hawaiian royalty used to live. Jase and I both fell asleep (mostly Jason) on the ride home.  
Punchbowl Cemetery 

Later that evening, we hopped on yet another tour bus and went to Germaine’s Luau! It was right on the water and we sat on the sand (you didn’t have to, we wanted to). We both thought it was really interesting to find out that a king a long time ago had a tree planted for each of his children and when Germaine’s was built, it was against the law to cut them down‒ so there are palm trees growing through the stage.

Before dinner, Jason bought a tiki cup that he really wanted for his collection and we got our non-alcoholic tropical drinks. After we watched how they pull the cooked pig from the ground, which is very interesting, we sat and waited to eat. The pig was actually really good! I was a little nervous to try it, but it was my favorite thing I ate.

Pulling the pig from the underground oven
The show was great! The thing we liked most about it was that other than the amazing dances from each culture or island, it was also very interactive. Jason really enjoyed the men’s dance from Aotearoa (New Zealand). They had tattooed faces and looked at the audience with big, beady eyes and stuck out their tongues like they were insane. Germaine’s also had all of the girls – who wanted to – come on stage and learn the Hukilau. Did I go on stage to dance? Duh!! Jason said I looked scared, but I definitely wasn’t! At one point they acknowledged all of the honeymooners and I looked like a baby standing up compared to all the other newlyweds. We both just really enjoyed this luau and would definitely recommend it. 


Brooke Koster said...

Yay Hawaii!!! Take me with you next time. We can all surf together.

Megan Harrison said...

Yay!! SOunds like you had a great time!! Hawaii sounds amazing. And PS: I'm with Brooklyn. We're a package deal, so bring me too! Haha :)

Danielle Garber Cowles said...

Lets go now!