Oahu Day 2 – A Typical Sunday For Us

Today was just another typical Sunday for us, just in a different location with a few upgrades. We made our Costco run, had our lunch time beer and a had a nap. Well of course more occured, but we kept to our usual Sunday routine with some enhancements.

Our day started at The Curb, a little coffee house that we enjoy. Well truthfully this was only our second visit here, but the coffee is delicious, their latte art is on point and we can get ground coffee for the rental. The vibe here is friendly and laid back, customers chatting with each other across the room and dogs greeting everyone.

After our nourishment, we returned to the airport to exchange our car. A jeep just wasn’t us and when I told the customer rep, I would have a hard time getting in after a hike, he understood right away about the need to slide into a car, instead of climbing into a vehicle. The exchange was easy and very pleasant.

Next stop, a farmers market in Manoa. We discovered this one at the end of our last trip, which was to bad we hadn’t in the beginning of the trip. It’s not touristy and full of fresh veggies and fruits. We picked up our items, then stopped at Safeway for the remaining foodstuff. Our fog from yesterday had lifted so grocery shopping was easier. We had one last destination before home, Pipeline Bakery for scones and malasadas. The bakery items here are to die for.

We returned to the house to unpack and then make the next set of plans. Off to the islands most popular destination, Costco. The pillows in the rental are horrible and there isn’t a cooler here, so we picked up both items, those little comfort items. Plus we needed to visit a Costco on the weekend, for routine’s sake.

As it was lunch time, we needed to stop at a brewery. The closest brewery in Hawaii Kai was Kona Brewery, the food and seasonal beers are delightful and the views make everything taste better.

We had one last stop to make before returning to the house, Tamashiro Market for poke. This is truly a local’s spot, but it is the only place I can have Marlin poke. In August, on our last trip, Marlin wasn’t in season, so there was none available. Today three different types were and I think I hyperventilated when I saw the options.

Upon our return home, it was nap time, per usual Sunday routine. However the homeowners of the rental were home and loud so napping at the house was not possible, might as well go nap in the park and hang out. We gathered our things and found a cozy spot in Kapiolani Park to read, watch locals play sports and snooze. Perfect place to laze about.

Once again we returned to the house and gathered up dinner goodies and sunset viewing materials. We walked over to Leahi Beach Park to dine and watch the sunset. What was for dinner? Poke and crackers. Tonight my “ghost ship” didn’t block the view of the sunset, at least not from our angle. The only blocking was by a low cloud, still a beautiful sunset.

Today was not about being the tourist and sightseeing, it was about remaining true to our Sunday routines with a few upgrades, of parks, poke and sunsets.

Goodbye to 2018- Day 10

The last day of 2018 and our last full day here on island started with a spectacular sunrise.

After a lazy morning of coffee and french toast sticks, we meandered over to Ford’s beach for one last walk about. This beach is a prime shelling spot, but today the ocean wasn’t offering much. We did get two new to us shells though, so I shouldn’t get greedy.  We walked to the north of the boat ramp, further than we have walked here before.

It was getting close to lunch, so off to Max’s for one last lunch out on the island.  I had grilled wahoo, while Mike enjoyed the conch salad.  Finally we learned to carry bug spray with us and spray up before sitting at Max’s.  The no seeums can be brutal here.

On our return home, we stopped at this little roadside house.  Would love to know the story behind it.

Once at the house we  began the ritual of packing up, consolidating the collected shells and cleaning up.  Ok I did sneak in a nap, while Mike did most of the work. I did snap a picture  of our lovely beach. There were pig prints in the sand today, hmmmm.


The homeowners came over before we went out for our sunset viewing.  They had just returned to the island and it was wonderful to meet them in person.

After chatting for a while we departed to watch the final sunset of 2018 at Galloway beach.  Upon entering the beach area we were both sad to see someone had taken the “happy rocks” that were there early in the week.


The sun was as beautiful as she was this morning.  Thankful our last sunset of 2018 was dramatic.

Great island to say goodbye to 2018  and hello to a hopeful 2019 on.

You Finish Where You Start – Day 8

Our morning started with a beach walk and you guessed it, it ended the same way.

Up early hoping the day would deliver calmer winds, clear skies, beach walks that didn’t involve waiting for the downpours and shells.

The day delivered and then some.

Morning started with a lovely sunrise that included blue skies!

We went on first morning beach walk of this vacation.  A big reason we rented this house was to walk the beach in the morning. Our last two rentals on Long Island didn’t have expansive beaches to stroll. We had heard there  was some good shelling going south on the beach, so we headed south.  Wow at low tide, shellers delight!

Back at our gazebo, we poured more coffee, wind was still a bit strong and some coffee became airborn as Mike poured!


We needed food so back up the house we trekked and had egg sandwiches on the bread from the bakery.  Their bread is the best on the island!


We threw around some thoughts on the day’s adventures and finally settled on going to Gordon’s beach and walking south this time, as far as we could go.  We heard rumors shelling was good going south and we had never walked to the end before.  We gathered our morning’s supplies and headed off.  Gordon’s was very busy, maybe a total of 5 family units by the time we departed, two hours later.

We told Pitbull the other day we would be back. I’m sure he thought we wouldn’t be, but we keep our word and stopped in for a beer.  We learned he sells fish.  Grouper season is over, but the guy has freezers full of grouper he caught in season.  For $20 he gave us a huge bag.  He didn’t have any lobster because the winds have been to strong and he hasn’t had a chance to go check on his pots.

We had two stops to make before we landed at “home”. Wanted to pick up two trivets at the guy who does straw work in Dunmore and ummm, we needed more Kalik so into Petty’s we went.

Once “home” Mike made a fish stew for dinner (actually for all dinners till we leave, it made so much) and we read on the upper deck in the shade.  I did sneak in a little nap too.

A little before 5 p.m. we went for a beach walk.  Mike turned around before I did, I continued on to the shelling spot to find more treasures and I did (sorry no pics of the shells I picked up). Not a bad deal, I shelled while Mike finished cooking dinner our fish stew served over polenta.

Even though we are on sunrise side of the island, sunset was beautiful on our side with the pinks lightly painting the sky.

Our day started on this beach and ended here.  This was the kind of day we have been craving all week.  It was nice that the day delivered!

Day 12 -Beach Day

Yup today was a beach day, rather a beach morning.  After a quick breakfast off we went to Kawela Bay.


Since our first trip to Oahu 8 years ago, we’ve wanted to go find this bay.  Eight years ago, we didn’t because we heard it was trespassing to get to and well being newbies didn’t want to chance it.  Over time we’ve gained some self confidence  and learned that this area isn’t kapu,  we went for the morning. We walked the beach, we walked the trails behind it, and we floated; what a lovely spot.

We spent over 2 hours here which was a record for us. We packed up and went to look at two possible rentals on the north shore for next trip. One of the rentals we’ve been eyeing since our 2013 trip and the other since 2015.  We needed to get a feel for them and see their proximity to a beach access point.

After scouting them out we went to North Shore Soap factory to pick up a few more goodies for gift boxes.


We then hopped over to Costco and Safeway for a few more items.  We finally landed at home around 3 p.m. only to pack up the last remaining boxes and get them sent off.

We needed dinner, so we finally decided to try Aloha Brewing.  The beer was decent, the vibe was non existent and we ordered a fruit and cheese board, the fruit on the menu said local fruits. The platter came out and we identified almost everything coming from Costco. The food prices were sky high, so we only had one item.

We left after one beer and the platter and went over to BeerLab HI, where we knew the beer was good and the vibe was great. After the one beer at the BeerLab HI, we realized we were DONE for the day.

We came home, I wrote, Mike checked the rental prices for our next trip and well let’s put it this way, prices have gone up and one of those houses is no longer a contender. We cleaned up and well usually sunset follows, but guess what? We are to darn tired to walk over to the beach, so sorry no sunset. And oh wait a minute, the sky is beautiful tonight, figures. Mike is taking one for the team and walking part way to the park to try to get a sky photo.



Day 11 – Recovery, Limbo and Cashing in Our Chips

Wait a minute, are we in Las Vegas or Oahu? Sounds like we had a wild night last night and continued the party today? But no, it was all about the hike.

Today Mike needed a recovery hike after his race yesterday. The plan called for a short hike, with views and fairly easy.  Well we found just the hike, Pu’u Ma’eli’eli Trail in Kaneohe, right across from Valley of the Temples.

Of course, first things first, breakfast of french toast sticks.  When we travel, we prefer to eat breakfast at our rental, of course at times it comes with some obstacles we need to overcome, such as having the right kind of pans and bowls.  We figure it out and make do with what we have, laughing along the way.

After that we packed up our gear, loaded the car with our supplies and our donor’s thank you boxes.  First stop was the post office to mail out the packages (Monica Jo and Mark, if you are reading this, yours aren’t sent yet).


Then off to park in a shopping mall complex to walk to the trailhead.  Stunning views of the Ko’olau range as we walked to the trailhead. This trail had some steep sections, with little windows out to see the views.  If it wasn’t dry this trail would be a mud fest in wet weather.  We lucked out today with a dry trail.

At times Mike had to do the limbo to get under branches on our way to the trail’s end.  Lucky for me performing the limbo was limited, this is the time it helps to be short.

We reached the end of the trail and took in the views up top of the pillboxes, WWII bunkers built all around the island.  It was a bit hazy out, but still the views were stunning.

The hike was almost 3 miles with a little over 500 feet elevation gain, it took us about an hour and half, including stops to ohhhh and ahhhh.


After the hike we headed down to He’eia Kea Pier to look up to where we hiked and were hoping to eat lunch at He’eia Kea Pier General Store, where we ate at 5 years ago, a few times.  Sadly it was closed today, so we had to devise a new plan. Hmmmmm we had chips to use at Honolulu Beerworks for free beer, well that sounds good.

We went back via the LikeLike Highway, the Ko’olau Range is majestic.


First we had to make another cookie stop at Honolulu Cookie Company on Sand Island.  We needed more cookies to ship home!


Then we went to cash in our chips at the brewery.  We really did have to go to the brewery because on Saturday they released a Pilsner, one of Mike’s favorite types of beers.  As we entered the brewery, one of the bar staff remembered Mike had his race yesterday and came over to chat with him about it. Yup we are starting to be recognized, just in time to leave.  I was wearing our local brewery, Hanging Hills’ Pilsner tee shirt, so it seemed only fitting I have my picture taken with the Pali Pils beer! After a great lunch, we decided we would need one more return trip to the brewery, so we didn’t cash in our chips, yet.

By this time we were exhausted and needed to do laundry, so back to the house we went.

We put together a quick dinner of Costco quinoa salad and chicken, cleaned up and headed out for the sunset. Once again a huge cloud blocked the actual sinking of the sun, but we did get some nice photos and enjoyed our viewing spot.


So we took a gamble today, that our legs would be up to good uphill hike and the path would be dry. It was worth the gamble and along the way we had a fun day!

Day 10 – Race Day

The day was finally here, Mike’s 15k race.  Up at 4 a.m. out the door by 5 a.m. to walk across the park to the race.  He picked up his tracker and we waited.  I was lucky enough to be able to bring my coffee.

At 5:45 runners were assembled at the start and promptly at 6 a.m. they started.


As soon as I saw Mike go past the start, I jetted across the park to catch him on the other side, the only place I could see him before the finish line.

After that I went back to the house and prepped breakfast for post race eats.

I headed down to see the finish.  I saw the male and female winners. The female is just 14 years old and this was the second time she has won for women, she won last year also.

Mike crossed the finish line at 1 hour 31 minutes, finishing almost middle of the runners once times were listed.  Not bad for a non runner, having been a swimmer most of his life.

He wanted to jump in the ocean after the race, so we headed off to San Souci beach so he could dip in the ocean. Perks of racing in Hawaii, a nice float in the ocean after.


Once back at the house, we had papaya boats, eggs with swiss chard and a little bit of the cake bombs we picked up yesterday at Pipeline.  We then planned out the day.  Off to the beach for a little bit of the morning.

We decided to stick close to home, so we stopped at one of the access points for Kahala Beach.  Lovely beach. We did a nice long walk and then plopped down.

Well, we didn’t last long, the wind picked up and pelted us with sand, I was afraid we would turn into sand dunes if we stayed much longer.  We gathered up our gear and decided we might try the beach park, it looked empty on our walk, just a wedding going on and not many people.

Well by the time we made it to the beach park, about 40 minutes after our walk, there was no parking available, hmmmmm what to do? Can you guess what we did? We went to lunch at Kona Brewing Pub in Hawaii Kai.  We visited here 5 years ago with our friend Colleen after one of our hikes.  We had a great meal and good beers. Kona beer is way better fresh than from a bottle shipped to the mainland.

After a leisurely lunch, we returned to the house to rest. The owners set up a hammock and Mike had to try it out for his downtime.  He texted me a picture of his view!


After dinner of leftover poke and other grub, we headed over to where our friend is staying on her impromptu trip in a little over a week. We wanted to provide her with some pictures of where she will be staying and the views she will have walking over to the beach.

We then walked down to our beach about .5 mile away.  The views looking over to the sunset weren’t spectacular, but we enjoyed them. We sat on a beach and stayed for a bit until a guy sat next to us smoking a cigarette. Well it didn’t really matter, the best part of the sunset had happened, to many clouds to make a stunning one, so we left.

Walking back we stopped in the park to take some artsy photos.


What a fun weekend of events we had. Now time to forget training schedules and just let the mornings happen!

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