Archive for December, 2007

Entry for December 19, 2007

December 19, 2007

I am writing this sitting in the Las Vegas airport waiting on my next plane.  The past few days have been great sightseeing with Jack throughout beautiful Oahu. 

I woke up around 5:30am today and couldn’t get back to sleep because I was so excited about heading back to Laura and Albany.  Tod made pancakes for breakfast and they were excellent.  Jack and I got an early start with the rental car and drove all the way up the west coast until the road ended.  We then drove back into Honolulu and Waikiki beach.  We walked almost the entire beach under a warm sun with our shirts off.  It was hard having to suck in our guts for almost 2 hours because of all the chickies around.

We had lunch at “Cheeseburger in Paradise” and their mushroom / swiss melt was almost as good as Red Robin (but not quite).  After lunch we drove up the east coast which is much more rugged with steeper mountains.  The views were awesome and I didn’t want to turn around but I needed to finish packing before my flight.

For dinner, Jack made chicken stir-fry over linguine (one of my favorites).  It was hard saying goodbye to Tod and Jack after spending the past 2 months together.  I’ll always have many, many great memories from the 4,400 miles we traveled through the Pacific and the many places we visited.

The 6 hour flight from Honolulu to Las Vegas was uneventful and brought me more then ½ way to Albany.  I still have another 8 hours of waiting and flights before getting to Albany around 6pm (EST) if everything goes well.

The picture is Waikiki Beach with Diamond Head in the background.  This was a sparse part of the beach – most of the people were around the corner.

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Entry for December 18, 2007

December 18, 2007

Here is a picture from tonights Luau dancers for the ladies.  Enjoy!

Entry for December 17, 2007

December 17, 2007

Today (Monday) Jack and I rented a car and drove down to Pearl Harbor to see the sights.  It was an eye-opening display and a great memory to the men and women who gave their lives on the “day that will live in infamy.”  Along with the Arizona Memorial we walked through several displays of the other ships that were either sunk or damaged in the attack.

The Arizona Memorial was built to honor the 950 men entombed when the battleship Arizona exploded as the result of a Japanese bomb which exploded her ammunition storage.  It is a very solemn place and I would highly recommend it to anyone visiting Oahu.  I left with a much greater appreciation of the people and events of Dec 7, 1941.  As the park ranger told us, “Morn their graves but honor their memory.” 

After Pearl Harbor, we drove back to the boat to get ready for our Luau at Paradise Cove.  It was an all-evening event with many pre-dinner activities like unburying the pig, hauling in the catch and opening coconuts.  The dinner was good but the show was excellent.  I’ll post two pictures – one for the gents and one for the ladies.  I thought it was well worth the $90 price.

Tomorrow we will do more sightseeing then I need to finish my packing and catch a 10pm flight back to The States.  It’s hard to believe this is my last night on Capaz.  She has sheltered us well during the past 9 weeks since I arrived in New Zealand including 30 days at sea.  I will take home with me many great memories of the past 4,400 miles she has taken us.

I’ll try to write something tomorrow before leaving for the airport. 

Entry for December 16, 2007

December 16, 2007

The sailboat races on Friday night were fun but it’s not something I need to do often.  We crewed on a Tartan 10 (10 meter) sailboat and finished 4th out of 22 boats.  All the boats are handicapped at the start so the finish is quite exciting.  The only problem was we had 7 crew on the 33 foot boat so most of us were “rail meat” meaning we just sat on the windward rail to keep the boat as upright as possible.  It wasn’t the most comfortable place to be sitting.

After the race, we went to the Hawaii Yacht Club (which is in Honolulu) for dinner and yacking. 

On Saturday, we worked on the boat a little then Jack and I went for a walk in the afternoon.  Anders, Terra and Patricia came over to the boat later in the afternoon and we had munchies along with cocktails.  The Christmas boat parade was cancelled because the wind was blowing over 25 knots (it’s been very windy since we pulled in here last Monday) but the marina still fed everyone with turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy.  The food was “ok” considering they were feeding a couple hundred people.

Today we took a ride to the north shore of Oahu along with Anders and his family.  We went shopping at a mall with lots of local crafts and sunned on the beach in Waimea.  This is the area where they have all the big surfing contests but the waves were only about 8-10 feet today.  Two weeks ago the surfing contest was cancelled because the waves were 30-40 feet.  I would have loved to see that.

Some of our crew did go swimming even though there was a flag and sign that said, “Shark Sighted”.  It seems wherever we go, we attract the sharks.  The picture is of Wiamea beach and the shark sign.

On the way back we stopped at a restaurant near the beach that had a great view of the beach, state marina and big volcanic mountains in the background.  We decided to stay for dinner and didn’t get back to the boat until almost 8pm.

Tomorrow Jack and I are going to rent a car for 2 days of sightseeing.  Tod has several boat projects to complete and he will be coming back here with his family over the next several months so we are going to split up for a couple days.  Monday night we’ve also reserved seats at a local Luau / Hawaiian dance show that is just down the road from our marina.  That should be fun!

Entry for December 14, 2007

December 14, 2007

The past few days seem to be more normal now that we are over the “feeding frenzy” of the couple days ashore.  You know how when you go on a vacation you kind of go crazy with everything new and it takes you a couple days to get in the swing of things?  It seemed like that until yesterday here. 

Yesterday (Thursday) we spent most of the day finally putting the boat to bed from our long sailing trip.  We stowed all the sails, washed down the decks, moved the dinghy to the bow and tied it down, washed all the cockpit cushions and generally cleaned everything up.  She looks much better now and we’ve probably lightened her by several pounds (of salt!).

Last night Tod took us out to dinner for the “End of trip / Crew appreciation” party.  We went to Buzz’s restaurant Pearl City and it was excellent.  They even had a SALAD BAR!  The last salad bar I saw was many moons ago in Trinidad.  I had a great steak with garlic-mashed potatoes and sautéed mushrooms.  Mmm Mmm Mmm.  I would highly recommend Buzz’s then next time you are in Honolulu.

My time in Hawaii is getting short and we have a pretty full schedule of things we want to do.  Tonight we are invited to sailboat races at one of the local yacht clubs and the three of us are going to crew on one of the boats.  This was setup by Anders (where we had dinner on Monday) and there is a party at the yacht club afterwards.  Tomorrow we are probably (we’ll firm this up tonight) going to have Anders and his family over on the boat for the day and grill the mahi mahi I caught on the way in.  There is also a Christmas boat parade tomorrow night from this marina with the boats traveling down by the big hotels in Waikiki.  We’re not participating in that but the marina is having a big party afterwards with freed turkey dinner.  Then we want to visit Pearl Harbor and the Arizona memorial and ride up to the north shore to see the waves and do some Christmas shopping at the craft stores.  One of the local hotels also has a Luau and Polynesian dancing that we’d like to see – maybe on Monday evening.  I don’t know if I’ll ever be in Hawaii again so I’m trying to fit everything into a couple days.

Jack is making Mexican omelet wraps for breakfast and they are almost done.  I’ll update the blog again in a couple days.

Here is a picture of the crew all dressed up.  Besides wearing shirts, we even wore long pants and I wore shoes!

 

Entry for December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007

Today was a little working on the boat and a lot working on the Internet catching up on emails, researching boat projects and parts I need to order while in Albany and a loooooong phone call to Laura on Skype.  We hadn’t talked for any length in the past several weeks and it was nice to have a cheap connection for a change.  After a few jobs on the boat, we showered at the marina facilities then went into town for West Marine.  Tod had a big shopping list and we were there for several hours.  Then we took a drive to look at some of the downtown marinas which were not as nice as the one we were in.  On the way back, we stopped at a mall for lunch (burgers at Outback – Yummm!), a haircut and groceries.  It’s great to have some fresh fruits and veggies on the boat again so we can stop eating out every meal.

Tomorrow we are going to look into a tour of the Arizona memorial at Pearl Harbor and some other sightseeing.  I can’t believe it will be Thursday!  This week is flying by.

How do you like my haircut and beard trim?  I thought the gal who did it was excellent – my best haircut in a year!

Entry for December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007

Pacific sunrise on the way from American Somoa to Sawarrow (Nov 16, 2007)

Entry for December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007

Aaron and his Wahoo (Nov 18, 2007)

Entry for December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007

Beach in Sawarrow (from Nov 18, 2007)

Entry for December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007

Our black-tip shark welcome party at Sawarrow Atoll (from Nov 18, 2007)