Saturday, January 16, 2016

Oahu Sight Seeing

We woke up early this morning to go see Pearl Harbor. We got there around 7:25 and were able to get two tickets for the 7:45 departure time to go to the Arizona Memorial.
It was a sober visit. Oil is still leaking, about 9 quarts of oil a day of the 500,000 gallons still in the sunken ship (see history fact 3).
After we returned to the land, Corey and I spent two hours walking around and reading all the information on the monuments and in the museums. They had turned one of the USS Arizona's anchors into a memorial 8.88 metric tons. I was amazed at one memorial where they had a little stone pillar and plaque for each boat that was sunk during World War II. There were 53 pillars, and each one of those had another list of another 60-80 people who lost their lives. Such sacrifice, so sad. I'm grateful for all those who fought for us.

Dear Lord, 
Lest I continue 
My complacent way, 
Help me to remember that somewhere, 
Somehow out there 
A man died for me today. 
As long as there be war, 
I then must 
Ask and answer 
Am I worth dying for?

That poem above was Eleanor Roosevelt's Wartime Prayer that she kept in her pocket during the war. I enjoyed having time to walk, read, and ponder life and death, peace and war, the purpose of this life. It was the one time that I was glad we didn't have the kids with us, cause I'm sure they would have gotten tired and would have been ready to leave. We were happy to be able to take all the time we wanted.
We were finished at Pearl Harbor around 11 and then went on a drive around the island - enjoying the sights of beaches and mountains. The mountains look so big and far away. We took the 63 highway and it seemed like just a 30 minute drive from Pearl Harbor before we were on the east shore looking at the other side of the mountains.
We drove up the east shore toward Laie. We stopped a few times for a quick quiet moment of contemplation at the beach. At Punalu'u:
So nice, to be at the beach, alone, just the two of us ~ I took off my flip flops and walked in the sand. Ahh, I'd like to take a picture to remember this lovely moment. Corey, let's take a picture of our foot prints in the sand. I make a foot print and ask Corey to make one. But he didn't want to take off his shoes and get sand on his feet. So he bends over "Will this do?"
I think he's still in "I'm a tired dad" mode? We're here without kids, Corey! We can relax like all other people on vacation do if we want! Don't you want to relax? Funny man, he make me laugh. When we got to Laie, we parked and walked around the BYU Hawaii campus. That was great. That would have been fun to go to school there.
Corey's only comment was that he thought it would be bigger. It was a Saturday, so nothing was open except for the library. Still we wandered around for a bit, then back to the car for a short drive over to the Temple. We had plans to go to the temple yesterday before going to the Polynesian Cultural Center, but when I checked online for what time the sessions started, wouldn't you know it's just our luck we just missed it.. it's closed for cleaning and opens again on Tuesday morning, when we arrive back in Salt Lake. Bummer. But I guess that means we for sure get to come back!
The visitors center was nice. We had a theater all to ourselves and watched two short films on the history of the LDS church in Hawaii. So cool, I love this church, it's missionaries, it's history, the testimonies of those early converts. I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ restored in these latter days. It's all true! Then we headed back to Kapolei, which took a good 3 hours cause I kept making Corey stop so I could take pictures of the ocean. There were layers and layers of waves coming in - big ones breaking really far away in the back, waves breaking in the middle, and waves crashing into the shore, I loved it~
Ok, you can drive... hurry stop! Wow!! (take 50 pictures of the same thing) Ok, we can go. Wait, stop!
Wow! Look at those waves! (take 100 pictures)
Ok, go. Stop! WOW! Now those are really cool waves! Over and over again. Corey was very patient with me. He'd sit and wait as I pretended to be a photographer. Knowing he was just stopping for me, I thanked him and asked "So, what do YOU want to do?" His reply "Take pictures of waves. Lots and lots of waves." We took a break from my ocean photo shoot and enjoyed some lunch at the "Famous Kahuku Shrimp" food truck. I wondered if their food menu crate is related to our crate furniture in Brazil. That's just all I think of whenever I see a wood crate.
The sun had set during our drive, so it was dark when we got back. Hyrum called to tell us that Natalie missed us and kept going to the door and Grandma's house and saying "Mommy, Daddy?" So I talked to her and she sounded so sweet and cute. "You at Grandmas?" I asked her. "No, I Natanie." We wanted to Skype, so after getting that up and running on both ends, we called and chatted for a bit. We couldn't see them, their webcam wasn't working, but they could see us. We put on our leis from the luau yesterday and thought we were so clever as we waved and said "Aloha from Hawaii!!"
"You guys look weird." We're on vacation in Hawaii! Come on! Everyone is dressed like this. I've had a flower in the hair this whole time! (not really) So it was great to talk with them. We shared Corey's computer screen and showed them all the pictures I'd taken so far, but we skipped over most of the waves. Near the end of the pictures, they saw one of the last pictures I took before we left of... OWEN!!
So it's all quiet on their end as they looked at the pictures as I explained them, then comes a picture of Owen, and all of a sudden I hear all this "Oooh!!" and "Owen!" and wimpering as they say "HE IS SO CUTE!!!"
They were missing Owen as much as I was, since we had him stay with other family cause he's kind of a full time job. I love my children, so excited to see them again. Makes it easy to go back home. We should have brought them with us, that way we would never have to leave!
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