Friday, March 3, 2017

Aloha From Kauai

First morning from the resort beach. It was overcast and threatening rain and the point blocked any sunrise so I opted to hike out to the point seen in this picture.
I disappeared for a week a little over a month ago but am just now getting around to blogging about this. I didn't want to interrupt the flow of posting about the Grand Canyon trip for a second time so opted to let it play out before going back and talking about this trip. This trip was to the island of Kauai in the Hawaiian island chain. It is one of the oldest islands to the west so as I discovered later, it is far removed from the volcanoes that many associate with Hawaii. It is also on a different island from Pearl Harbor so there isn't the great historical sites either. Still, Kauai is referred to as the Garden Isle and it had beauty is spades.

I should back up that this trip all started a little over a year ago when my wife decided that she wanted to go to a different medical conference for her continuing education than the series she had been going to. That meant that the next conference was being held in Kauai of all places and so when she asked if I would keep her company, I dragged my feet and eventually said yes. Actually, I think I said Hell Yeah and began packing immediately only to be disappointed when she told me it was still a year away.

I had great visions of seeing active volcanoes and Pearl Harbor but soon my research revealed that I would see neither of those things. However, there seemed plenty to see on the tiny island and it a whole lot of culture to absorb so I was still excited to go. The conference lasted a week with my wife tied up in lectures every morning. I would hike up to some ocean side cliffs to watch the sunrise every morning and then drive around scouting various things so that when my wife was off around one, we could hit the high lights and enjoy the rest of the day. It worked well.

For us, the culture wasn't too shocking since the islands are almost 30% Filipino and I'm married too one. It was highly commercialized but due to its small size and perhaps lesser popularity compared to the other islands, dealing with that wasn't too bad. There is only one main road that goes about 75% of the way around the island and it was always busy but traffic for the most part went smoothly so we were able to get to where we were heading and not feel beaten down by the drive to get there.

By the time our return flight had arrived, I felt as if I had seen all that I had wanted to see and could check it off my list. I still have a desire to see an active volcano and Pearl Harbor but I'm not sure if I will make a special trip back to see either. Only time will tell. I'll probably stick up a few more posts on my time there and some observations over the coming few weeks mixed in with some other stuff. I hope you enjoy them.

The sunrise from the backside of the point. Much better view and I did get soaked walking back to the resort afterwards in a pouring rainstorm!


Bill said...

Love the sunrise photo.

Looks like a pretty place. Business took me to a Maui and to the Big Island, but never here. Interesting that most of us have a mental image of Hawaii that blurs these unique places all together.

Bob said...

Sounds like a great trip, Ed, and that's great your better half would let you tag along! It is a beautiful island. We went to Hawaii on our honeymoon and stayed in Honolulu, but took a day trip to Kauai. Rented a car and drove on that very road you describe.

Kelly said...

As beautiful as that second photo is, I quite like the first, too!

I've never been to Hawaii and I'm not sure it'll ever get to the top of my "to go" list of places to travel. How wonderful that you got this opportunity! I look forward to hearing/seeing more about it.

Ed said...

Bill - If was my first time and in ways, it was what I expected and in others, it was much different. One of the bigger surprises was I didn't really count on the large Filipino community that was there.

Bob - I can't imagine only having a day in Kauai but I guess I would take one day versus having to fly back another time just to see the one island you missed!

Kelly - I'm not sure what it is about the second picture that bugs me but the colors in the sky seem blotchy to me. I never figured out why it ended up like that.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

I'm glad you had a good time. I've not been to Kauai, but have been to Oahu, Hawaii (The Big Island), and Maui. The photos are stunning! All the islands are beautiful in their own way, and I've heard that holds true with Kauai.
It made me chuckle reading you didn't feel much culture shock because of the Filipino population and also probably because it's the United States and not a foreign country. (teasing you of course :) ) The post office forgets that a lot of the time - It's maddening trying to get things sent to/from Hawaii. They charge more than on the continent and it takes twice as long to come or go, like they're taking the package by outrigger.