HAWAI’I means – HA – breath of life, WAI – water, I – creator
HONOLULU, OAHU – On our way to Hawaii, we have three sea days during which we cross the equator, that invisible line that divides the earth into the northern and southern hemispheres. So I consider we are on our way home as we are now in the northern hemisphere.
Our first stop in Hawaii was to be Hilo, but because of the continued eruption of the volcano, the decision was made to skip this port. Our guide said said it was “really going off” with the most lava ever in recorded history. In 24 hours they lost 500 homes, a whole beach and the bay. So instead we got an extra day in Oahu’s capital city, Honolulu. It was interesting being in the USA again. Familiar stores, products and currency. Almost like being back home. Almost.
After a day of sightseeing and shopping – I found a much needed extra suitcase to get back home with all my “stuff” – we had dinner at the oldest hotel, built in 1901, in Honolulu – The Surfrider, in their Beachfront restaurant. It is located right on Waikiki Beach, and with the surf in the background, and a musician with a ukulele, and the huge old banyan trees, we were in Hawaii heaven. The food & drinks were pretty delicious also.
The next day we had a tour of the north shore. Unfortunately, at this time of the year the BIG waves are not around. But it was still beautiful to see. Also unfortunate was the fact that in May, the USS Arizona Memorial closed indefinitely because of damage to a loading ramp. So we didn’t get to visit there. Lucky I had visited on a previous holiday.
Throughout my journey I have been coming across the history of World War II in the Pacific, and how it impacted many of the places I have visited. The Pacific is vast and the war was brutal. Very few were left untouched by the atrocities of both sides from Asia, through Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Japan, Tonga, American Samoa, French Polynesia, in particular Bora Bora, where you can still see the cannons & bunkers left behind by the Americans overlooking the beautiful water and beaches. The memorials in Hiroshima & Nagasaki were particularly moving and sad. I hope that my children and grandchildren, and all the children and grandchildren of the world, never have to experience anything like that again.