We woke with the fog of travel still trapped in our brains, slowly wearing off. Our first full day here, was a day to blend in, to experience how we might possibly live here in retirement. The first order of business was, as usual, coffee. Mike brought enough coffee with us for day’s worth of drinking. We needed to go to a coffee shop to pick up more coffee and we had our coffee place already chosen.
After coffee at the house, checking social media, reading email, making a grocery list and a plan, we headed out to The Curb, where we had a goodie waiting for us, shipped over from The Big Island. A few weeks ago Big Island Coffee Roasters posted about their new coffee bars, limited quantities and not being shipped out to people, just small coffee houses they do business with. I whined a little on their social media account and they shipped one over, waiting for us at The Curb. The Curb coffee shop was small and just perfect. Two talented baristas crafted awesome coffee. We picked up a bag of Big Island Coffee beans to make at home for the week, the guys kindly ground it for us.
As we sat enjoying our cappuccino and coffee, we noticed a couple behind us, working. The man had on a Right Proper Brew shirt. On our way out, we stopped to mention how much we enjoy their beer when we visit D.C. This sparked a conversation and we discovered this man is the founder of BeerLab. We chatted D.C. breweries for a few minutes and next thing we know we were given a card for a free round of beer at the BeerLab. I walked out with chicken skin. Never expected that, just wanted to chat beer, again I thank Anthony Bourdain for giving me the courage to speak to strangers when we travel.
After this we went to the Kakaako Farmers Market. I know that most visitors go to the KCC Farmers Market on Saturday morning, but over the years this market has lost its local feel and has become more of a touristy place to visit. When tour companies make it a regular stop on Saturday, we know it is not our place anymore. At Kakaako we avoided crowds, picking up fresh fruits and veggies at a leisurely pace. We also grabbed some breakfast of an omelet with pesto drizzled over it. Trust me you need to have basil on your omelet. Also needed a breakfast dessert of fresh fruit frozen (lilikoi and dragonfruit) with local honey drizzled on top. We had our fill both in our stomachs and in our bags, time to head home to deposit the goods.
Once completing that task, we went to another local shopping spot, Costco and there the spirits honored me by granting a big wish. I was hoping to try Maui Brewing Company’s, Lilikoi Saison and thought I would have to hunt around for it, but no…cases on cases on cases of it were at Costco. This happened to us last year in Kauai, I wished for a certain Maui beer and there it was in Costco.
Completing the Costco run, we dropped off the stuff and headed out to lunch at Honolulu BeerWorks. We started off with their limited release sours and progressed to their hefe and their woman beer! Lunch was delicious, smoked ahi spread, turkey panini and a tasty salad.
We needed desperately to hop in the water, on our way home we stopped at Ala Moana Beach Park for a quick dip, we were far off of the main part, more hanging with locals to get our quick dip in. It was refreshing and I loved the view of Waikiki and Diamond Head in the distance.
By 3 p.m. we were spent, spending a morning and an afternoon, just doing things the locals do, blending in, not going to all the tourist hot spots. We had to return to the house, to nap, write, shower and have a dinner of greens topped with poke from Costco.
While enjoying dinner, we realized we didn’t have dessert. On vacation we love to enjoy a dessert. We quickly put together greek yogurt parfaits. Layer of yogurt, layer of Anahola Granola, layer of fresh guava, repeat, with the addition of banana slices, freeze for an after sunset treat, topped with fresh lilikoi once removed from freezer.
After clean up, it was time to head out for sunset views. We went up the road to a little park on the side of the ocean. Sadly the sunset disappeared behind a huge bank of clouds, no full sunset, it was a sunflop for dramatic color. Still it didn’t matter, because we are in Oahu.
To me blending in equals to retirement rehearsal for us. We hung out for coffee in a locals place, hit a farmers market that tour busses don’t visit, did a Costco run, drank beer at small craft brewery, hung out on a beach populated by tourists, but found a spot where the locals go in at, and watched the sunset away from the Waikiki crowds, all of this was just blending in, just another day for us.