T-minus 7 days
I flew from San Francisco to Honolulu on Thursday (yesterday). Not much to say about the flight except that the seat in front of me leaned back so far that I couldn't get my book far enough away from my face to be able to focus my eyes easily. I either need new reading glasses, or United Plus for the extra leg room.
Adrien had arrived the day before and had rented a car, so he picked me up at the airport. We needed to head back to the boat right away because Adrien had to keep to a radio schedule (more about that later), but he was kind enough to stop on the way so that we could pick up a 6-pack of cold beer, which tasted extremely good in the hot humid weather which we Bay Area folks are not at all used to.
Coming onboard L'eau Life felt like I was returning home. I have made 3 previous trips on this wonderful boat. A few years ago (maybe 6?) I had visited in Hawaii with my brother and his friend Todd. We stayed about a week, diving, playing, and made a sailing lap around the island of Oahu. Tnen there was the trip from Fiji to Brisbane, Australia, and then a year or so later from Brisbane to New Zealand. She looks mostly the same, except for the noticeable lack of clutter. Seems that Adrien and Paula (Adrien's wife) had cleared out a ton of stuff on their last visit in anticipation of selling the boat in Hawaii. Cabinets that I remembered as overflowing with all sorts of things are now empty. Lots of room to store my stuff, but we will need to be sure to do careful provisioning as there isn't much chance of finding something we might have forgotten hiding the back of a cabinet (remember to buy Tabasco!).
After settling in, and installing the newly refilled propane tanks (we use propane for cooking and Adrien had the tanks filled earlier that day and was carrying them around in the trunk of the car. Glad I didn't know as I would have been worried a bit about tailgaters on the highway), we went off to get some dinner at a restaurant down the beach.
The Ko'Olina Marine is part of a complex of hotels, restaurants, stores, tennis, golf, homes, and timeshares. From the marina it is a short walk to the beach, and then to the restaurants, pools, and other facilities. As we got to one of the restaurants (the name escapes me at the moment) a military jet flew by, and started into a wild aerobatic airshow. I don't know for sure, but some people said this was an F-22, which clearly is capable of amazing things. It did some typical loops and rolls, as you are used to seeing a fixed wing plane do, but then it got more interesting. This plane appears to be able to just about stop in mid air, turn any way it wants and go in a new direction. I did "tail stands", fluttered like a falling leaf, then would suddenly accelerate and fly straight up. It was all very impressive, and loud, and everyone around stopped to watch.
Anyway, dinner of fish tacos (yum), then walked back. I stopped to put my feet in the water (warm!). Then back to the boat. I was feeling pretty jet lagged by then, and Arien got busy fixing the latch on the freezer door, so I called it a night and fell asleep to the sound of sawing, and drilling.