The Garden Isle

After living on Oahu for over a year, Wes and I finally got over to another island a couple of weeks ago. Wes’ high school friend and his family were visiting Kauai so Wes took off Friday and Monday and we spent the weekend on the island.

Our first order of business was SCUBA diving on Friday morning. Of course the first dive we decide to leave our underwater camera on the boat is the time that turtles decide to swim with us. We saw two very large turtles underwater and another five when we surfaced. There was also a baby turtle who swam right up to our group, checking everyone out. We also saw a white-tipped shark. Our dive master said that she’s usually just hanging out in the same place and is harmless but there’s something about turning the corner and finding a large shark within attacking distance. It’s a little scary.

I was getting a little sick on the deck so after our second dive I jumped back in the water to wait for the rest of our group to finish (we clearly need to dive more to learn how to regulate our breathing and save air so that we can stay under longer). There were some turtles hanging around and I got to swim with them, if you call being in the water at the same time “swimming with turtles” which I totally do.

Can you see the turtle?

The next day we decided to drive out to see the canyon. It’s referred to as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. There were gorgeous views and totally unexpected on an island.

Driving up to the top of the canyon we were amazed at how many hikes there were to do. It seems like we’ve exhausted all the hikes on Oahu (well, anything that takes any effort, that is) but all the trail heads we saw would take months of hiking every day in order to finish. We momentarily wished that we lived on Kauai instead of Oahu, but then we came to our senses when we realized how isolated it is there. Island fever would set in pretty quickly there, I imagine. I guess we’ll just have to settle on weekend trips.

Sunday morning we went out to the North Shore for a 4-mile hike. It was raining and a little slippery on the trail so instead of going 8 miles, we cut it short. And, because it was raining, I left my camera at the hotel because I stupidly left my backpack at home so the only thing I had to carry my camera was a giant blue purse. Not so great for hiking. I made a mental note (and told Wes to do the same) to pack my camera according to what we were planning on doing that trip.

After the hike we tried to go rum tasting. We were all thinking that it would be like wine tasting. We even had a plan to have Wes’ friend’s parents pick us up if things got crazy. Unfortunately, the liquor commission is a bit crazy as far as alcohol tasting goes and we could only get 1 oz. per person per day. They gave us each .5 oz of two different rums with strict instructions not to share with anyone else, which meant that we couldn’t try all four rums they made. A little silly.

Where's our rum?!

We tried to find a wine bar after that because we were really let down by our tasting experience. But the same rules applied to wine tasting and we ended up at a restaurant to have a drink on the patio.

Mai Tai

We flew out Monday afternoon and planned to see Secret Falls before we left. No camera, again, because not only did I not pack correctly, but Wes dropped our point-and-shoot camera. Believe me when I say it was worth it.

Next time, of course, we’ll have to plan better when it comes to camera gear.

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