Nick and I LOVE the beach…good thing too, because all Navy bases are near water. However, despite Japan being an island, which means technically we live “by” the ocean…we really don’t have the “beachy” lifestyle that we have come accustomed to in our past duty stations. Sadly Nick and I haven’t even been to the beach since moving to Japan! (The beaches in Japan are not only far away due to the horrific Japanese traffic, but they are totally not the soft sandy beaches like Florida) That being said, Hawaii was just what we needed! Sun and sand!
“I got my toes in the water, toes in the sand, not a worry in the world, a cold beer in my hand. Life is good today. Life is good today!” ~ Zach Brown Band
It was my second visit to Hawaii and Nick’s first. We stayed on the island of Kauai, Hawaii’s Garden Island. Known for it’s lush greenery and beautiful beaches, we weren’t disappointed.
We stayed in a tiny town called Wamea on an old sugar plantation, the Wamea Plantation Cottages. The houses were all unique, each with a different floor plan and it’s own charm. Built and lived in over 100 years ago, the cottages are a historic treasure.
The plantation houses were all set right by the water, giving me the perfect excuse to run on the beach every morning! Not that it was hard to get up early, we were awakened by roosters (yes plural) every morning! Hundreds of roosters and chickens inhabit the island of Kauai. They are famous in those parts…darting along the road and making noises ALL hours of the day! One local told me that the people of Kauai will never go hungry as long as they continue to have the abundance of chickens that they do!
Nick did a bit of surfing while we were there…the beach on base was gorgeous and the waves were perfect!
Nick did work most of the time we were in Kauai, but he got one weekend off…so of course we took advantage of that time to explore the island!
Despite my fear of sharks and “open” water, Nick LOVES to scuba dive…Normally I stay by the phone fretting and waiting, for Nick to call me and tell me he has finished his dive, and that he survived! (Yes I am a bit of a worrier!) But since we didn’t have much time to explore Hawaii together, I didn’t want to sit this one out! So, I stayed on the boat and acted as official photographer!
While everyone else risked their lives swimming with marine life, I stayed up top with the Captain! My parents did name me after Captain and Tennille! (Unfortunately the Captain didn’t let me steer the boat…boo!)
Nick might have seen sharks, octopus, dozens of different types of fish and coral, but I got a show from the top of the boat myself...
After a long morning of scuba diving, everyone in our party was hungry...since I made buddies with Captain Zach (a native Hawaiian, with a thick accent) I found out about a local spot for us to dine at for lunch! As Zach put it, "it's da best!"
One night we went to dinner at a local restaurant called Wrangler’s Steakhouse. The food was decent, not at all exceptional, but the dessert we ordered was DELICIOUS! Lilikoi Dream Pie…I would go back just for that alone! This lilikoi (passion fruit) pie is a made out of ice cream and topped with whip cream! So yummy!
The famous Kipu Ranch, is 4000 acres of lush diverse greenery, and the place where many movies were filmed.
Countless films have been made on the island of Kaua'i, (most recently – the 4th Pirates of the Caribbean, Just Go With It and The Decendants) but Kipu Ranch specifically has a long list of movies made on it. The picture below is one of the most famous spots, where movies have been filmed…Jurassic Park being the most famous!
The final zip line was 18 hundred feet high and a quarter-mile long! This line was done in pairs, so Nick and I got to experience it and the gorgeous scenery along the way, together!
Shaved ice and then dinner at the Wamea Brewing Co. on my last day in Kauai made for a perfect trip!
The week and a half spent in Hawaii was a wonderful vacation for Nick and I. We said our goodbye’s at the airport and parted ways, not knowing when we would see each other again. He was heading back to Japan and I to Texas, to wait out the rest of the evacuation, until they allowed the dependants to go back to Japan as well.
I spent the last 4 weeks in and around Texas, visiting friends and family in Austin, Houston, Fort Worth, Dallas and Norman Oklahoma. Tomorrow however, I start my journey back to Japan…after 7 weeks in the States, I am ready to finally be back home! Nick will be there to pick Beretta and I up from the airport and though I am dreading the long trip, I am anxious for the reunion!