Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Hawaii: Laie, Air Conditioning, The Polynesian Cultural Center, and St. Andrew's Concert.

"To get away from one’s working environment is, in a sense, to get away from one’s self;
and this is often the chief advantage of travel and change."
~Charles Horton Cooley

After leaving Honolulu, we drove straight to BYU-Hawaii's music department, where we unloaded our stuff and then headed off to The Polynesian Cultural Center.

If you recall, I had never been to Hawaii before January 2013's cruise and now here I was again for the second time in one year (and in my life) at the PCC. We were all hungry by this point, so luckily I remembered the yummy Banyan Tree Snack Bar which Shepherd, Stephen, and I discovered on our trip to the PCC in January.

This time, I shared the chicken and shrimp meal with Tara. SO delicious. Interestingly, it wasn't as good this time around, but it was still good and certainly hit the spot.

The canoe pageant was, of course, our pit-stop in the middle of the day.

I had so much fun with Tara, Angela, and Andrew (he was taking the picture). I'm glad I got to hang out with them.

From the islands of Hawai'i

From the islands of Tonga
 And below, the beautiful Tahitian dancer. I took these pictures especially for Shep, who fell in love with this exact girl when we were here in January.

From the islands of Samoa
From the islands of Aotearoa
We were able to catch the presentation at every country in the park. Several of the performers were the same from when I was here before, but the guy below from Aotearoa was new and he was like this massive beast. I swear he looked like The Hulk. He was more than willing when we requested photos with him.

He's bending his knees here and he's still that much taller than I am.

This guy's tree-climbing skills were astonishing to me. I could barely climb two feet up the rope in middle school gym class.

At about 4pm, we made our way back to the music department at BYU-H, where we had dinner, rehearsed, changed into our performance attire, and gave a concert. Just before the concert, I sort of lost it and started crying. I was tired and my feet hurt. I have a problem on SLVA tours that my feet and ankles swell up pretty badly. From all the flying, driving, walking, and most of all standing for hours on end, my ankles and feet just take a beating, I guess. That night, I couldn't keep the tears in. Tara ran to my rescue, giving me some oregano essential oil to rub on my ankles, which is supposed to help with swelling. She took care of me and it was just what I needed.

We gave our concert and then went home with our host family, whose name I cannot remember at the moment. I also was able to see Viktorija and Aleksey briefly at the concert that night and then arranged to see them the next morning at the ward where we were singing some special musical numbers in sacrament meeting.

I had been praying that Blythe and I would stay with a family who had air conditioning. It was just so hot and muggy and I think that was adding to my ankle swelling problem. When we walked in the door to the nice, big, beautiful home we were staying in that night, I was a little sad to realize there was no air conditioning. Our hosts showed us up to our rooms. We each had our own. Blythe in the 14-year old granddaughter's room and I in the 12-year old grandson's room which was festively lit with strands of Christmas lights. They gave them up for us so we each had our own private room. SO nice.

AND? As soon as we walked into the room, our hosts said that we were in the only two rooms in the house that had in-window air conditioning. Hooray! By morning, with the help of oregano essential oil, prayers, and a nice cool room, my ankles had considerably improved.

And when we woke up on Sunday morning, we were able to see their view in the daylight. Both sides of the house. Pretty amazing. No wonder they have one full wall of windows.

Sunday, we sang in one of the Laie 1st Ward's sacrament meeting. (I think it was the 1st Ward. Maybe 4th?) After church Blythe and I went back to the house where our hosts had prepared lunch for us. Lasagna, two different salads, fruit, and rolls. Yum! Then Blythe and I went to pick up Kristen and Brooke to go do a little sight seeing. We drove back down to the end of our hosts' block where there is a lookout.

There was a group of people cliff-jumping. Pretty crazy. I have to admit, I was glad I was the one taking the picture and not jumping in.

Kristen and Blythe

Then we made our way over to the temple. Really, I make the sound like a trek, but Laie is small. One stop light small. It's a quaint little town and really beautiful. We ended up running into Viktorija and Aleksey again. See, I told you Laie is small.

Laie Hawaii Temple

Aleksey, Viktorija, and I

Blythe and I

We found a narrow, hidden entrance to the beach across the street from the temple.

And with that we were off again, back to Honolulu. No not to catch our plane, yet. We had a concert to perform! Yup. 5pm at the St. Andrew's Cathedral, as part of the O'ahu Sacred Music Festival. We rehearsed and then we raced around town to take some group photographs.

After the concert, I saw Dale, my friend and old co-worker who is now living in Honolulu. I am SO happy he was able to come to the concert. I wish we had had more time, but getting a Dale hug and snuggle was so worth it, even if it was short.

Directly after the concert, we drove to the airport to make our 9pm flight back to Salt Lake City. Everyone changed in the car while I was driving. I didn't get to change until after I'd dropped everyone off, returned the rental car, made my way through security, and then finally in the bathroom just after security. Fun times.

Coming home from this trip, I think I had the worst jet lag I've had in a long time. But it was definitely worth it!

1 comment:

shrimp daddy said...

You're funny. Thanks for the pics of my Polynesian :)