Honeymoon Adventures

Pearl City Travel Blog

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So tropical

Our honeymoon was fabulous. Gene surprised me with a four day excursion to another island. We went to the rental car place upon arrival to the Big Island of Hawaii. Gene completely forgot the company with which we had reservations. I sat with our bags while Gene went from window to window saying, “Uhhhh, do you have a reservations for Dodge.” He would intermittently look down the row of 20 car rental places at me...at which time I would give him a solid role of the eyes and palm to forehead slap. Eventually we got our car, which we had to put in my name anyways, because Gene's license got stolen and California has some ridiculous rules about getting a new one. Sooooo �" we were cruising down the road in our sweet Jeep Wrangler 4WD, when we opened the A.

Taking it all in at the lava fields
C. Vents and were absolutely assaulted by an incredibly pungent odor. It smelled horrible...lungs on fire and noses raw, we high-tailed it back to the rental place and jumped from the car the moment it stopped. I went to the agent, and told him what happened. He said, “Oh, sometimes foreign tourists put diesel in the tanks...and that is what it smells like. Sorry eh.” So, crisis averted, we ended up getting an upgraded SUV �" and finally got on our way in a normal, new smelling vehicle.


We saw beautiful mountains on the Big Island of Hawaii and much more. Although it rained a lot of the time, it was refreshing and cool. We stayed at the Kilauea Military Camp, which basically looks like an Army base that now serves as a stark but comfortable resort of sorts.

Gene taking the plunge at a beautiful waterfall


We took a tour of the active volcano vents. Gene and I both agree that it reminded us most of being gassed in boot camp. It was a touching recollection...of coughing, full sinus release and thinking we were going to die. I think I started having a mini-asthma attack and had to wear my cheap windbreaker across my face like a dessert sultan. We made a quick retreat to the car, and briefly witnessed the bus loads of tourists coming back from the vents looking as though they were going to lose their lunches. That made it all worth it...oh wait...no it didn't...but really it did...not...okay it was cool.


Next we decided to hike to The Lava Tube. It's an underground tunnel that was formed by lava flow.

Hiking to the waterfall
It was really nice and the scenery was beautiful. We hiked to the Tube using a trail that ran the rim of a giant lava crater, so we had some pretty amazing views the whole way. The tube itself was cool and damp. The walls were smooth and it was really interesting to see the way the rocked had formed over time.


The same day we also drove along Highway 11 and came to a remote spot where we hiked across about ½ mile of lava flow, to get to a black sand beach. Some one had arranged coconuts on this passage into intricate rows and they had begun to sprout palm trees. It was eerie and interesting. The sand on this short beach was jet black and reminded me of fish eggs. On our hike back Gene decided to take 20 minutes trying to get an “amazing photo” of a wasp while I fried on a hot bed of lava LITERALLY! That was my first layer of sun burn and one more reason for me to hate wasps.

Hiking
Gene later noted that his wasp pictures were not so amazing.


So moving on...the next day we went hiking to waterfalls in the rain forest. We got a lot of exercise and felt rejuvenated. The weather was nice and Gene actually jumped from a pretty high ledge into a fresh water lagoon...just like a local kid! That's Gene...he just went for it and blended into his surroundings like he does so beautifully. In the mean time...I took pictures of the scenery and re-applied my bug repellent �" now that's adventure. The greenery was lush and reminded me of Swiss Family Robinson.


Over the course of our trip we also found some really good local restaurants...and yes...that was my contribution to the trip.

Gene checking the tide pools at the black sand beach park
We had some above-par sushi and found what I think is one of the better Cafe's I've ever been to - called Hilo Bay Cafe' (just in case you stop by The Big Island). The most amazing thing at this Cafe' was that our waitress saw my driver's license and asked what part of Tennessee I was from. I said, “A little town an hour from Chattanooga.” She said, “Oh, I went to school in this town called Sewanee.” My jaw dropped and I told her that I was born and raised there. It was really weird. Of all the people and all the places, we just happened to get a waitress from the smallest town in Tennessee - where we had all just been gathered for our wedding. Absolutely bizarre!


The next day we hiked four and a half miles through a baron waste land in high winds to see the famous “Green Sand Beach”.

Queen of the World! Taken after hiking 2 miles to the green sand beach
By the way...we were in cheap $3.00 Old Navy flip flops and I forgot to put on sun screen �" yeah...ouch. Gene used that misting spray-on sunscreen (improperly I might add) which resulted in burning hot zebra stripes all down his legs. We hiked forever and ended up finding the beach which was more gray than green! We were covered in red clay and looking ridiculous in our “totally tourists” outfits. Oh well, we had a great time on the way back. I provided some entertainment while we marched �" belting out some of my favorite tunes like “In the Jungle” (using the Inward Singing Technique I sang both the chorus and the background “ahweemowhep” AT THE SAME TIME �" yes...I know what you're thinking...talent). I then moved on to more sophisticated ballads such as “What Would You Say” by The Dave Mathews Band and “Just for Now” by Imogen Heap respectively.
Green sand beach...not that green, is it?
After about half a mile of nagging, I finally got Gene to join in for a round of “Row Row Row Your Boat”. The only thing that describes that experience is pure and utter awesomeness. Then Gene sang a righteous version of “Stairway to Heaven” ending half way through with “Hey man, no Stairway!” So, we were at the point where we were singing songs of which we only knew the first line of chorus and then faded into lyrical oblivion after a few notes. We switched it up and started making up a fantastic fairy tale, going back and forth every few chapters, each of us making up our sections as we went along and adding them to the previous parts the other made-up. Please, don't send us checks in the mail �" you will most likely find this amazing work of literature right alongside Harry Potter in the kids section of Borders, in a few years.
Our feet after hiking to the green sand beach!
After all this fun, we finally made it back to the car, which was thankfully still parked where we left it.


After that we drove for an hour and a half starving and weary. We ended up eating at a Denny's of all places - which meant that we drove through the steep and winding roads of South Kona, Hawaii just to eat at a typical, greasy, commonplace diner that one finds on most street corners in any given place in the U.S. By that time it was getting late, so we began the long drive back to our quarters, tired but satisfied that we would be feeling sick shortly from the gut-bombs that we delighted in at Denny's. Sorry folks, we did not get any good pictures of this particular section of our trip.


We headed back down the mountain seeing the same things we saw on the way in - although we did spot a zebra and a donkey on the way back.

Hawaiian Zebra and Donkey...SWEET!
I promptly did a screeching u-turn and and made Gene get out a take a picture...it's a Hawaiian Zebra and Donkey...who could pass that up!?!?


Our last day was spent sleeping in and then packing up. We drove down to Hilo, and had breakfast at the same cafe' I've been raving about. The extra bonus (to me) was that this time we had a good-looking, heavily French accented waiter. This reminded us of Ben Dodge...the French part...not the good-looking part, mind you. Awww, just kidding Ben. But seriously this guys was like...really French.

Then we drove to the airport, turned in our car, and flew home.


Now we're back in our little apartment on the 43rd floor of a high-rise in downtown Pearl City, HI.

About to leave...
I think we both agree that we're thrilled to finally be home with our bags officially unpacked. We had the most amazing wedding and honeymoon. We will always remember the past few months as the best in our lives so far.

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So tropical
So tropical
Taking it all in at the lava fields
Taking it all in at the lava fields
Gene taking the plunge at a beauti…
Gene taking the plunge at a beaut…
Hiking to the waterfall
Hiking to the waterfall
Hiking
Hiking
Gene checking the tide pools at th…
Gene checking the tide pools at t…
Queen of the World! Taken after hi…
Queen of the World! Taken after h…
Green sand beach...not that green,…
Green sand beach...not that green…
Our feet after hiking to the green…
Our feet after hiking to the gree…
Hawaiian Zebra and Donkey...SWEET!
Hawaiian Zebra and Donkey...SWEET!
About to leave...
About to leave...
Creepy windmills
Creepy windmills
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photo by: crystalware