Hawai’i – Day 3

Happy Remembrance Day! We woke up at 5 something. We get 12 hours of light and 12 hours of dark. It’s fairly confusing for us and our bodies haven’t fully adjusted. We went for a smoke this morning at a different designated smoking area (a new one each day!). So we got to see the sky light up over the mountains. It was too cloudy to see an actual sunrise but it was beautiful none the less.
We left our maid Nelly a note yesterday with a tip. We said Aloha and Mahalo for the service. She left us a note which I’m keeping. Today I’ve left her a note asking her what her favourite Hawai’ian saying is. I hope she again leaves us a note.

So the hotel gives you vouchers for breakfast as well as a voucher for a breakfast where they tell you about all kinds of Island activities. We’re currently planning some activities. Some things I can’t do because I’m a boob, such as snorkel in deep water or ride a flat bottomed raft. But other things, such as the Lahaina Stables and a sunset cruise. They also have submarine rides! How cool will THAT be?!

So at this fancy breakfast they were raffling off some free things such as a 2 hour cabana rental, 2 free drinks at the Tiki Bar. The gentleman started off by saying the first prize was 2 free hours of beach time. ha ha
Anyhow, we won a free dinner for 1 at the Tiki Terrace so that’s awesome! (a 3 course meal, to be exact)

When we got back to the room there was another message. Due to high winds the rip current is dangerous and they strongly advise you NOT go in the water. You can hear the wind outside and the palms are swaying in the breeze. The lawns are covered in plumeria flowers, which are picked up the tourist ladies and placed in their hair. Which I, of course, have also done.

When we went to the Ohana Centre (a desk where they’ll book trips for you, free of charge) for info on all the activities we are hoping to do, we had a whole list of planned activities. We wanted to ask her all kinds of questions. How far in advance do you have to book them? Who is the best? What company is better? Nani (who was a real charmer of a woman and the only local we encountered that we didn’t like) told us we shouldn’t do the Blue Hawaiian Helicopter Tours. Oh yeah? Why’s that, Mike asked. Because one went down yesterday. All five people were lost.
Well knock me over with a feather!

Needless to say we scratched that off our list and went to the coffee/sundry shop on the grounds and bought the paper. The helicopter crashed into a mountain on Moloka’i. The weather conditions were fairly intense yesterday. We can see Moloka’i from the beach and yesterday it was surrounded by heavy clouds for most of the day (not to mention the wind speeds).
Suffice it to say we have decided that sticking to land activities is now our thing. However, if we were gamblers, now would be the time to take a tour. What are the odds of another crash, so soon after yesterdays? However. I, nor Mike, are gamblers.

When we got back to the room and sunscreened it up (I firmly believe I’ll come back to Toronto as white as I was before and no one will believe that I came) Mike saw an envelope addressed to Michael and Lindsay Dallaway. It was a card (our second) from the hotel and a 2012 monthly desk calendar. Neither of us remembers it being there yesterday. It was a nice surprise.

We just got back from a glorious time at the beach. The waves were very powerful and lots of fun! I now have sand in places I’ve never had before. I don’t know how long we were at the beach but this is why I’m here. The beach, the waves, the sun.
When we got back to the room there were two messages. One from Nelly, thanking us for her tips (her favourite Hawaiian saying is Aloha). The other message was from my mother. Automatically I assume someone’s dead. Nope, just me.
So she started off her conversation by saying, You really need to get on facebook fast.
Lady, I’m on my honeymoon. I’ll be getting on, but certainly NOT facebook.
They heard about the helicopter crash and can I please message someone or facebook or call and let them know we’re okay.
But first I decided to shower. I am covered in sand. As I’m showering I get a little confused. There are thousands of people here. They haven’t released the victim’s names so why assume it’s us that’s died? I get out of the shower and Mike is on the phone. His mom has called. Turns out one of the couples are from Toronto.
Oh man. NOW I get it!!

The fate of those on the helicopter remains in our minds. It reminds me of a part in Reading Lolita in Tehran. The author, during the war, walked about how when the bombs would drop, the relief you felt that it wasn’t you who had perished, yet at the same time you feel guilty because it wasn’t you, because you DO feel relief. Guilt in knowing your relief is at the expense of someone else’s loss.
So I called Mum, told her I was not, in fact, dead, so there’s no need to worry.
During one of our smoke breaks today I mentioned how I haven’t seed any lizards yet but that we probably will in Hana. Well, it seems God was listening. I happened to look at a rock behind Mike and there was, what looked like, a chameleon (from 10 feet away he looked like it but getting up close he wasn’t). I was able to snap a few pictures (okay, more like 30) but was pretty happy to see a lizard.

We also saw a wild parrot. I don’t know what kind he was nor will I until I go to PJ’s Pets.
We also saw what looked like a red headed blue jay. He/They had all the markings of a blue jay except their heads were such a bright bright red! So pretty!

I haven’t yet encountered any dumb Americans to convince them into doing stupid things (hello Crab Fingers!*) however it’s only my second day here so there’s still time (technically 3rd day here).
This morning we sat at a table with a couple from Illinois and a Canadian couple. He’s from New Brunswick, she’s from London. He’s a Habs fan, the Illinois man is a Chicago fan, Mike’s a Leafs fan and I’m an Oilers fan. Plus the Chicago man, as well as ourselves, are Pens fans. The Habs man said he went on NHL.com this morning and Sidney will not play this weekend. Which brought up all kinds of questions that Mike and I have. Unless you’re a business man who runs a company, why are you going on the internet? NOTHING is that important! I magically died according to my friends and I STILL didn’t go on facebook to let them know I was alive. And even if you ARE a businessman running a company, certainly you trust your minions to survive without you for a week or two??
Tonight’s plans are the magic show and dinner theatre. Steak, baby! mmmmmm

We thoroughly enjoyed the magic show Kupanaha. And, as my mother always told me, I’m magic!

We went to the lobby to check in for the show and found we had time to look around the jewellery shop, Gigi. They had some absolutely stunning pieces, specifically a black pearl with mother of pearl flowers and some truly odd shaped pearls. I tried the black pearl/mother of pearl necklace on and it was stupidly beautiful! Mike and I took guesses as to how much it was. I was right. Anyway, Mike bought it for me and it’s stunning. I put it on right away, of course, for the show.
When we left the store there was a young man who was the warm up guy. He performed tricks for us and was quite entertaining. Finally we went in. When you go in they take two photos. One, a normal one, and the other where one of us had to put our arms out in the air (me) and the other had to look surprised (Mike).

Finally we sat down. The pork bruschetta appetizer was simply amazing. And it turns out? I can’t stand Mai Tais. Oh well.
The steak wasn’t that great but the shrimp that came with it were huge and very yummy.

I don’t know where to start with the show itself. There’s just so much to tell. The magician, Jody (a man – he complains about having a girl’s name all the time to his sister Bob…ha ha). So he asked if anyone in the audience was celebrating a honeymoon. WE put our hands up. He asked if there were any anniversaries. 30, 36, 54, 48, 60. Then birthdays. So he came over and asked Mike his name. I assumed he was going to take Mike up for some audience participation. Then he asked Mike what his wife’s name was. He answered Lindsay. Then the magician asked if he could borrow me. DAMMIT!

So he takes my hand and we go up on stage. His son is his assistant (his wife is his performing assistant). So he says he needs my help and asks if I’ve ever seen on of these, as he has his son bring out a straitjacket. I replied that I’d rather not say (audience laughs). He puts it on and I strap him in. 4 buckles in the back (going down his spine), then he comments how I seem to be experienced in this. I tell him we shouldn’t talk about that. I wrap and buckle his arms. Then he tells me he’s going to swing the other strap and I’m going to catch it. The other strap happens to be between his legs. So he starts swinging and I go to catch it but he stops me. Then he starts swinging again so I let him continue his swinging and applaud him (because it looks more like he’s humping the air). Several audience members applaud as well. Then he tells me he can do this all night (typical man). So I catch the strap and slowly pull it tighter. He told me, at one point, to beware of his macadamia nuts So I pull tighter and tighter. Then I put my foot on his leg and feigned pulling even tighter. He asked if I was making a new hole. I was done and received a round of applause as one of the male Hula dancers helped me down the stairs and back to my chair.
On a side note, the five Hula dancers were amazing and one of the dancers reminded me of Rosario Dawson (and the dancer that helped me off the stage was rather yummy!).
When we were leaving one of the hula dancers told me I did a great job. Aww.
Mike got called up, too! He and one of the gentlemen at our table were called up to be assistants in the cutting of the woman. I was hoping the magician would cut Mike but he didn’t. It would’ve made it more authentic. But it was funny because Mike had to hold a leather strap so the magician joked with him about having some of his own at home, to which Mike replied he had them in a different colour.
After the show we sat on the beach and enjoyed the waves and a few shooting stars as well as some lightning to the south of the Island. We continued to have the helicopter victims on our minds. We figured we were at the beach when it happened and wondered whether we would’ve seen the crash had it not been so cloud covered.
At our table for the show we had 3 other couples. “Doug” was a bit of a douche. We were all talking about flight times, then weather. Doug said he and his wife met a couple from PEI and have kept in touch. Then he talked about how it doesn’t get cold in “Prince Edward” nor do they get snow. I laughed at him (not in a nice way) and told him they do. Then he said no they don’t. Finally I told him I was from there. It gets damned cold and a lot of snow (maybe not anymore but I wasn’t about to let this American jackass tell me things about my little province). He still refused to believe it so I gave up and didn’t bother talking to him after that.
After the beach we took a stroll. In all today we’ve seen 7 weddings, I think. Apparently 11/11/11 is hugely popular. Good thing I changed our proposed wedding date (I had several in mind: 9/10/11, 11/11/11). Today I am thankful, though, for being here another day. It could’ve been us on that helicopter. All we could think about was, how much time before the crash did they have before they realized they were in trouble?
My heart goes out to the families of everyone, including the fellow employees of the pilot. It’s a terrible thing for them, for the victims, for the families and for the Islands, even. I’m sure we’re not the only ones who’ve cancelled their air tours because of this.
OH! And the owner of our hotel? He lives in Vancouver and is a very young 105 years old. Insane.

* Crab Fingers.
I took Mike to PEI in 2008 and, at Peake’s Quay, they have this display of lobster, crabs, clams, starfish and other assorted things found on the Island. So I’d been picking up the lobsters and the little crabs (the lobsters had their elastics on) and starfish. Along comes an Amurrikin who wonders aloud if he can touch the things. I said yes. Then he decides to be macho and says it’s not difficult to pick up a crab, you just have to know how. Pick one up, I say. He did. And the crab snapped his little snapping claw on his finger and he jumped in pain, dropped the crab in the water (who scuttled away with a little smile on his face, I swear) and the guy’s wife shook her head and walked away. The guy walked away with his finger in his mouth looking dumb as hell. Mike and I laughed. I wanted to stay and try and get more suckers to pick them up but Mike figured I’d get in trouble.

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