Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Magnum, G.I. -- in Hawaii -- FINALLY!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008:

Golf is up at 5:30 a.m. to get ready to get to the airport for a 10:10 a.m. flight. In the last few days, she has packed almost everything she can think of that they might possibly need, but packing is somewhat problematic because she and Larry are fearful of packing in a bag that will be checked in anything that will actually be needed (shades of St. Thomas!). Therefore, the two carry-on bags are loaded to the gills. Unfortunately for golf, she does NOT have the aircraft power adapter than she had hoped to have for this long flight. Although ordered, forgotten by the vendor, and promised by FedEx, it was NOT, after all, shipped FedEx, it still wasn’t even shipped at all, and she must rely on her laptop batteries. She’s very annoyed. I'm ready to go!

She and Larry have weighed the golf bags repeatedly (as things get inserted and rearranged) to be sure they don’t go over the 50-lb. weight limit. Golf has a new soft-sided golf travel bag with all sorts of pockets for things, but if she fills up the pockets, the bag will weigh too much! They were, however, able to get the frozen lime juice flask, the tequila flask, and the triple sec flask packed without violating the weight limits. Whew! Gotta have that margarita when we get there! Everything else eventually is arranged to golf’s and Larry’s satisfaction. I am in golf’s carry-on, although rather unceremoniously buried at the bottom, as it is not necessary (or probably desirable) to have to remove me from the bag, as with the laptop and the little bottles of shampoo, etc., to get through security. I'm ready to GO!

Now the trick is to get all the stuff in Larry’s car, because we can’t take the golfmobile (Rodeo), which would easily accommodate both golf bags, to the airport because Larry will be parking in the employee lot and only his car has the correct sticker in the window. This too is ultimately managed, and we’re off!!

I do hate having to be at the Atlanta airport 90 minutes before a flight when we don’t even know if we’ll be able to get ON the flight until five minutes before the flight starts boarding. The Atlanta airport should be renamed the “Hurry Up and Wait International Airport,” but I imagine most big city airports are all like this now.

Larry drops golf and the bags off at lower level ground transportation, but she can’t check the bags without him – more security rules! So she sits outside and smokes a final cigarette (well, not exactly) awaiting his return from the employee parking lot. The golf bags are checked in just fine, and it would appear that there are a sufficient number of empty seats such that golf and Larry will make the flight. They grab some breakfast at a Burger King after successfully negotiating the security checkpoint and go to the smoking room (see? it really wasn’t a “final” cigarette). At the gate, golf and Larry are assigned seats (whew! And whoopee!) and shortly we are air-bound, on our way to Honolulu. I’m very eager.

It was a LOOOOOOOONNNGGGGGG direct flight. They fed us lunch and dinner (bleah) and showed three movies, I think, though I don’t remember what a single one of them was (of course not! I was stuffed in a bag in the overhead compartment!). Larry read a little of the Carl Hiaasen non-fiction book on golf, golf alternately read a Doris Duke biography or watched a movie on the laptop (which she found almost not worth the trouble because the airplane noise almost drowns out the audio on the movie). She persevered, however, and watched about half of the Tom Selleck movie “Reversible Errors” before she got too annoyed and gave up.
Although we had gotten away from the gate a little late, we still managed to land in Honolulu about a half-hour earlier than the ETA of 2:30.

Larry and golf were relieved to retrieve their golf bags (yea! They arrived!) and take the shuttle to the car rental place, which is out of the airport on the Nimitz Highway. No problem getting a car, and they headed into Honolulu to find our hotel for one night before golf tries to find a place to stay in Waimanalo for the rest of our time here.

Driving around downtown Honolulu is tricky. Our minds don’t work the way the highway/road designers/planners there do; however, without TOO many mis-turns, we do find the Celebrity Resorts (talk about a misnomer!!) Hotel with the aid of the Google maps golf had printed. This is a dinky little, old, two-story motel that looks more as though it belongs on the strip in 1960s Myrtle Beach – inside and out. However, they have our reservation and we can have a smoking room “upgrade” for the same $99/night price. Oh, goody . . . .

Leaving the golf bags in the car, having retrieved at this time only the flasks from them (during which extrication Larry has to cut the tie-wraps on his bag, using golf’s vintage Nehi pocket knife which she had packed in her golf bag, and then somehow the knife gets forgotten and lost in the shuffle. Was it left on the car bumper? Wherever it ended up, it wasn’t in any of bags, and alas, golf’s favorite pocket knife has gone to join the missing koa wood pen in whatever Pen and Knife Heaven there is for precious items lost while on vacation). (As golf is later to discover, replacing the knife on eBay will be much easier than replacing the koa wood pen, as there was not one to be had anywhere on Oahu that she could find – apparently Long’s Drugs doesn’t carry them any longer. Bummer . . . . )

Uhhh, this is our view?

Oh, no . . . . we are leaving in the morning, aren't we?

Soon enough, although it is probably only about 6 p.m. Honolulu time, it’s 12 a.m. to golf and Larry and they are starting to fade after relaxing for a little while with their margaritas. However, it is the first night in Hawaii and they can’t go to bed before dark, for crying out loud, so they venture out to at least go find Waikiki Beach, where the sun is setting. They enjoyed that and got some pictures there.

Do you want to read about feeding the parking meter instead of paying $18 to park overnight? No, I thought not. Instead, more pictures of the sunset, below.

Larry and golf did not enjoy being in this area. TOO tourist-y, too crowded, not enough HAWAII, as they are used to it (open spaces and driving around exploring two-lane country roads).

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