As many of you know the flight from the the east coast to Hawaii can be rather long. Our travel plans flew us to Chicago in a short 2.5 hr flight then to a longer 9 hr flight directly to Honolulu. I have not been a brave flier in the past and was quite anxious about the whole thing, mostly worrying about turbulence making me nervous. The good news is that both flights were smooth as silk, so much so that I was able to sleep on and off throughout the whole process. We arrived in Oahu without complications and headed directly to our hotel on the local shuttle, it was a smooth but an extremely cold ride as the air conditioning was set on arctic temps, hadn't we just left that environment?
We arrived at the hotel 5 pm Hawaii time but that is 10pm my body clock time so all I wanted to do was settle in and relax. Hubby had plans with a friend that lives on the island so he changed and headed out the door. Our room faced Diamond Head and the whole Waikiki beach area, I took my dinner out to the patio to enjoy the sights and sounds of the ocean washing against the shore. After relaxing I settled in and had absolutely no problem sleeping again even when I had been dozing on and off for hours, I never woke again until morning.
When morning did come the sun was rising over Diamond Head offering some wonderful views and photo opportunities. What a joy it was to sit outside for breakfast at the hotel buffet, I had expected some wonderful fruit opportunities and was not disappointed. One thing I certainly will miss about our stay on these islands will be the papaya and the pineapple. We quickly changed into our beachwear then took our first walk down the strip, we watched the surfers and many other water sport activities as we walked past all the people staking claim on their spot for the day. That was one thing that made us chuckle, some people were very serious about were they would spend the day, by daybreak had their chairs out with a sand bunker build all around to keep interlopers out. The tanners were also very serious and we saw more than one over done individual with skin like leather and wrinkles like a shar-pei dog, this is not an attractive look at all.
After a nice walk along the whole shore line we cruised into the international market to look at the local offerings. Our son had requested unique t-shirts and masks, as we wandered the stalls we saw many of the same wares displayed but nothing that I found to catch my eye but it was interesting and the vendors were actively bartering with their potential customers for items that looked to be mostly imported. We then went to the infinity pool and found two poolside lounge chairs by a lovely couple from Kentucky on their last day in Hawaii that shared their island experiences with us. We then spoke to a concierge who enticed us into spending the next day at the Polynesian Cultural Center, this was a place we were told not to miss to gather knowledge about the island heritage. We ate at Wolfgang Puck's restaurant that evening and had a pleasant meal but discovered the menu pricing outside was not the same as offered inside, not a big deal but still we felt a little bait and switch game going on. Our first day on the island was wonderful and exciting now we drifted off to sleep in anticipation of the exciting day to come.