September 24, 2012 – The trip to Kona, Hawaii

Today starts a little frantically. Although we are on the road early to get to the airport, there is a massive traffic jam on the freeways due to a fatality earlier in the morning. Our trip to Oakland is much longer than anticipated. I suggest we park in the premier parking because it is closer to the terminal. It’s extra money but after lugging the luggage just a short way (ah, perhaps that is why it is called luggage!), I think it is a good choice.

We are not at the gate long before the flight is called. Once we are settled, we have a celebratory glass of champagne and we are off. Hawaiian Airlines first class is okay but not great. Breakfast of a salmon omelet and, oddly, rice with chicken are for breakfast. The rice reminds me of the chicken bogg we had in South Carolina except way less greasy.

It takes just under 5 hours to get to Maui where we meet Eileen and Jim. Then we all take the same flight to Kona. The Kona airport is mostly outdoors and looks reminiscent of a tiki bar. After collecting our luggage and getting the rental car we are off for our next adventure.

Kona Airport

Eileen at Kona Airport

The first thing we do is go to Costco for supplies. Amazingly here we are out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and Costco is just like the one at home. In a bid to waste some time due to a 3 PM check-in at our condo, we have lunch at Costco. John has a hot dog and I have a salad. Eileen has a hot dog and Jim eats a piece of pizza. Real island food.

Eileen and Jim having lunch at Costco

We make our way to the condo. It is right on the ocean. On the shore is a massive amount of black lava rock. The waves crash on the lava rocks. When they are big enough, we can feel the spray on the deck. The view is great.

View from the deck

We are so happy to take off our traveling clothes. It is really, really humid here – much more so than I was anticipating. This is a place for shorts and short sleeve shirts. Eileen calls the property owners to find out about using the air conditioning. I guess we are all low humidity wimps.

John goes native

It’s almost 5 PM (which is actually 8 PM at home) so it must be cocktail hour. We have thoughtfully provisioned ourselves with chips, salsa and wine. Clark and Lewis join us on the deck.

John, Jim, Clark, Lewis and chips

Our dinner consists of an expertly cooked piece of opah (by John) in a tomato salsa sauce. We also have green beans, seasoned tomatoes and some yummy bread. We all exclaim over how good it is – probably better than going out. And we have entertainment! Jim has brought his traveling guitar and while he plays we sing Tiki Torches at Twilight and I am an Ape Man. Everyone is pretty silly.

Jim with his traveling guitar

We head out on the deck to catch the sunset. We are hoping to see a green flash. No luck tonight but maybe tomorrow. John and I are tired out from getting up early and the time change. We head off to bed after a very full day.

John on the deck watching for the green flash

No green flash but a beautiful sunset

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