Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Hana...

Since Adal's here, we drove to Hana on Sunday.

If you read this blog regularly, you know we took the famous road to Hana last year. It was beautiful, but not terribly fun.

It took us 6 hours to get to the end. There are 59 one-way bridges and over 620 hair pin curves. All of it in the middle of a rainforest. Some of the bridges were built as early as 1908.

This time around we drove a little more cautiously and there were no arguments in the car. That made the trip a thousand times more enjoyable.

We stopped along the way a couple of times to visit different places...



Such as the arboretum...



And, the Shave Ice stand.



We also stopped off to get a fish taco and coconut shavings.
Adal got bit by the first mosquito. He contracted Malaria immediately.


Our primary destination was about ten miles past Hana. It was there that we saw Ohe'O'Gulch. It's also known as the Seven Sacred Pools.



We parked near there so we could hike up to Waimoku Falls. Now, Brett never told us that we would be going on a hike so Jeannie and I weren't at all prepared for it. In fact, Jeannie wore flip-flops.

"You'll be fine," Brett informed us.

Well, it was a lot more strenuous than fine. It turned out to be a 2 mile hike up the mountain. Jeannie was a trooper though. She never complained, but it was a tough trip for her.

Along the way we saw some incredible sights.


Three-quarters of a mile of the hike was through a bamboo forest. It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen.


It was gorgeous.









We finally got to the end and were at the bottom of one of the largest waterfalls I've ever seen. It was incredible.









We hiked back and got to our car went to the restroom to clean off our legs. We were very muddy. Jeannie was especially muddy. She hiked four miles in flip-flops!

There was one last sight to see and we got in the car and drove another half an hour to see it.

This last place was the only reason I had agreed to come on the road to Hana for a second time. It was Charles Lindbergh's grave.

It was tucked away next to the ocean in the courtyard of the Palapalla Ho'omanau Church.



It was very serene and very beautiful. It was fascinating for me to visit the secluded final resting place of a man who at one time was the most famous person in the entire world.






After visiting the churchyard, we drove back toward Paia. Whereas last time the whole trip too ten hours, we cut this one down to six hours.

We got to Paia and had dinner at the famous "Mama's Fish House."



It was one of the greatest meals of my life.

We had four different appetizers that were incredible.



I then had an amazing lobster soup, followed by a Mahimahi, stuffed with crab and lobster and encrusted with a macadamia nut crust. INCREDIBLE.

For dessert Jeannie and I shared their world famous Liliko'i Creme Brulee.

After that we drove back to the ship. Our tummy's were stuffed. Our muscles were sore. Our minds were full of fantastic images from an exciting day.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Boogie boarding...

Megan and John love boogie boarding. They usually go at least once a week. Often times, they go two or three times a week.

Thursday we got back to the ship and John told us that "the waves won today.". Megan had a big old raspberry on her hip, next to her butt.

She came to my room last night and while I looked away, Jeannie took a picture of Megan's welt.


It was worse than I thought.

I'm not sure if the pictures do it justice.








More pictures to come if it keeps changing colors.

-- Post From My iPhone

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fugitive...

I thought the cops were following me today.

Remember that scene in Goodfellas when Ray Liotta drives around paranoid, looking to the sky at the helicopters he thinks are following him.  Well, that was me today.

Here's what happened...

I went into the new Mac retail store in Hilo, looking for some Mac accessories for the new iPhone and iPad.  Specifically, I was looking for an iPad case.

This Mac store is a brand new independently owned Mac Product store in Hilo.  It's owned by an older, fidgety couple who are very, very nice, but have a nervous kinetic energy.

As I stooped down in between the aisles to look at the lower shelves at the iPad cases, they repeatedly and anxiously asked if they could help me.  I thanked them and told them that I was just browsing.  They moved on to other customers, but I could see the wife watching me out of the corner of her eye.

I switched to the other side of the aisle and listened as the husband gave some really bad advice to one of his customers.  He was trying to talk the man out of buying a Macbook Pro and was encouraging him to buy a Mac Desktop.  "Between you and me, laptops are a fad," he told the customer.


The iPad cases weren't very good so I gave up on them.  I stood up and looked at the iPad that was on display.  I looked at the plug in and was curious if it was the exact same plug in that I used for my iPhone.  I unplugged it and inspected it.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw the "wife-owner" elbow one of her employees and say, "Keep your eye on him, I think he's trying to steal an iPad."


I looked up and she turned away and pretended to be busy.  I walked around the store and she and her employee shadowed me everywhere.  I finally got tired of it and walked out of the store.  I saw them staring at me and pointing at me as she talked to her husband.


I shook my head in disbelief.  I had no idea what I had down to arouse their suspicions.  


Looking at my phone I noticed I had 15 minutes to meet Jeannie and Megan so I began walking from the shopping center toward the boat dock.  The distance between the two was about a mile.  As I walked, I began noticing what I believed were undercover police cars slowly driving around me.  


"I'm being paranoid," I thought to myself.  


Then, a police cruiser pulled up behind me.  It pulled up next to me and stopped.  I continued walking as the officer talked into his radio.


My immediate reaction was to speed up and hurry to meet up with Jeannie and Megan.  I thought they would serve as good character witnesses.  Walking quicker might make me look suspicious though, I thought.  So instead, I slowed down.


I turned the corner and began walking down the hill.  


Another squad car appeared at the bottom of the hill.  


"Did that stupid, jumpy, old lady really call the police on me," I asked, incredulously to myself.  I actually said it aloud.  Primarily so I could hear my voice to make sure it wasn't shaky or anything.  A shaky voice would make me look guilty.  Which I wasn't.  I wasn't at all.


I quickly mentally inventoried my backpack.  The only thing in there was a tennis balls, a powerade and my tennis racket, nothing that the stupid lady could accuse me of taking.  


I continued walking (slowly and unsuspiciously) down the hill.  I looked up for helicopters.  There were none there.  


As I returned my gaze forward, the police cruisers behind and in front of me turned on their lights.  The four SUV's that I had believed to be undercover cops, swooped toward me with blue lights flashing behind their tinted windshields.  


I froze in my tracks.  My eyes opened wide and I'm sure they looked like they were about to pop out of my head.  The cars turned into the alley in front of me and blocked me from going anywhere.


They jumped out of their cars and immediately began yelling.


I stepped back and to my relief, they all ran past me.  


They ran a few feet past me and swarmed around a large open bed pick up truck.  They pulled a shirtless,shoeless Hawaiian guy out of the truck and slapped some handcuffs on him.  "What's in the truck Ricky?!" they were asking/yelling at him.  


He didn't answer.  


I took a deep breath and quickly walked down the hill.  "Stupid Mac Lady," I said aloud, making sure once again that my voice wasn't shaky.  


Once I was further away from the hub-bub, I realized, my instincts had been right.  I'd sniffed out a police sting.  Watching all these gangster movies and TV shows like The Wire and Dexter had paid off.  Like Ray Liotta, I saw the helicopters.  I wasn't paranoid.  Unlike Ray Liotta, the helicopters weren't for me.  They were for some guy named Ricky.


Next week I'm going back to that Mac store and I'm changing the password to all their displays.  

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Long Sunday...

We had a busy Sunday.

We rented a car.

The deal is, if we rent a car in Maui, we must stop at Krispy Kreme.


We then drove to the other side of the island to play miniature golf.

It was very windy.


Still, it was great fun.


After 36 holes, John came out the winner.

After golf we drove to Paia to have lunch. We ate at the organic pizzeria.


The wood burning oven was especially tasty.

We ended the day by going to the Theater to watch Toy Story 3D.


Best movie of the year! In fact, it might have been the best movie I've seen in several years!

Great, fun day!

-- Post From My iPhone

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day...

It's Father's Day and we have a day chock full of activities. I rented a car for us to drive around. I picked it up earlier than I had planned, so I drove over to the strip mall to pick up some breakfast. Nothing looked good so I didn't get anything, but look who I ran intoz


It's Scott Hanada from Laughtrack Theater. He flew over to Maui from Honolulu to visit his grandfather for Father's Day.

On a completely different note, I snapped this picture of John in the laundry room.


We've had our difficulties with the laundry room. It keeps ruining all of our clothes. The only thing we wash down there now is our workout clothes and underwear.

Somehow, John's load of laundry was full of suds when he opened the door. So much so that he took his arm out and it looked like he was wearing a cast.

Jeannie's been singing at the sail away show. It's right before our last improv show so we can't watch her sing. Our show is directly above the sail away show, so while we're waiting for her to finish and to come join us, we watch her sing from the catwalk above the stage.


At the bottom of the photo you can see her singing and walking onto the stage.

One last photo. From time to time, Megan tells us stories about her childhood. John drew a picture on Megan's white board of what we all think Megan looked like.



-- Post From My iPhone

Friday, June 18, 2010

Happy Birthday, ship...

Yesterday was the 5th birthday for the Pride of America. Frankly, it looks much older.

Don't get me wrong, I love this ship. Absolutely love it. Love the design, love the decor, love the itenerary, love the people who work here, love it all. But, it doesn't look as slick as the Pearl or the Gem. Those are two of the newer ships in the fleet.

So, to hear the Pride is only 5 years old was surprising.

There was a birthday party for the crew on the back of the ship.


You see Jeannie holding 2 Diet Pepsi's. All crew members get 2 free drinks at the crew parties.

Everyone gets annoyed at Jeannie and I because we use our drink tickets to get cans of soda. One of the ship magicians told us that we really should be passing our tickets off to crew members who drink alcohol so the tickets weren't "wasted".

I wanted to say something snotty back to him, but he disappeared. Well, not really disappeared. He fell off his barstool, drunk.

Happy Birthday Pride of America!

-- Post From My iPhone

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Blog Change...

I changed the design of the blog.

I've been tired of it for quite a while, but haven't wanted to change it and lose the familiarity of everything.  Remember when Laverne and Shirley moved from Milwaukee to California?  They changed the set and I hated the show.  Same thing happened when Al's diner burned down and they changed to the wooden decor on Happy Days.  The show got real crappy after that.

What other shows changed sets and made me dislike the show?  Ah, shoot I can't think of any others right now.

I do remember that the Dukes of Hazzard changed cousins and I stopped watching the show.  Bewitched changed Darrin's and it screwed everything up.

Not that I'm saying Change is bad (Sorry Obama), but sometimes it does screw things up.

With all this arbitrary evidence in front of me,  I took the plunge anyway and changed the design.   I found a template I liked and expanded the margins so that my pictures and videos were bigger.  Hope it doesn't drive you away.

Maybe this video will entice you to keep coming back to this blog.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Parking lot Redbirds...

Yesterday I got a message from old friend Mike Loeffelholz.  There was no text in the message.  Just a photo.

That's Mike on the left.  If you're a Cardinal fan or baseball fan in general, you'll recognize the person on the right as Albert Pujols.

Mike is a HUGE Cardinal fan.  So, this must have been one of the greatest moments of his life.  I'm going to call him sometime today to try to get the story of how he got to meet Pujols in the parking lot of Nickelodeon.

Seeing this picture reminded me that I forgot to blog about visiting Mike and his family before we came to Hawaii.

I had a meeting in L.A. at the end of March and was only in town for 1 and 1/2 days.  I arrived late on a Monday and left early on a Wednesday.

It was a quick trip, but it gave me a chance to hang out with Mike, his wife Melissa and their daughter Gracie.   Instead of staying in a hotel, I stayed with them in Studio City.

Gracie spent the two days showing me her ballet moves.

She also let me take over her room.  This is what I woke up to every morning.

After my meeting on Tuesday, we went to BW3 for wings and then had some frozen yogurt.

Melissa works for Nickelodeon so she got us passes onto the Paramount Studios Lot.  We took an impromptu tour and saw lots of cool sets and film locations.

This is where they were filming one of those cheesy American Idol Chevy commercials.
This is the bench from Forrest Gump.

This is where George tossed the Marble Rye down to Jerry.  It's also Elaine's apartment building where she talks to the gabby rabbi.

The school from Clueless.  And Grease.  And Community.  And tons of other movies and TV shows.

This stoop is used in every mafia movie ever made.

Since my visit, Mike and Melissa had another daughter.  Lucy Loeffelholz was born a few weeks ago.  Hopefully, in between ships I'll be able to see the new addition to the family.  Although, I'm not sure where I'll stay.  I'm sure Albert Pujols will be staying in the stuffed animal room.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Arms...

See that chair...


I was sitting in that chair until Mr. Arms Over His Head hit me in the back of my head on the 6th or 7th time he reclined in his chair.

At one point, his arms were rested on the back of his AND my head my head. He wasn't bothered in the least that his arms were resting on some one else.

This man was walking down the road playing a harp.


Not for money. Just because he wanted to.


-- Post From My iPhone

Monday, June 7, 2010

Out of play...


It's Sunday night and we're playing tennis in Maui. Since there are 5 of us, we rotate out and in to play doubles.






It's my turn to sit out so I figured I'd do a blog of some of the random photo's on my phone.


Here's a photo of Jeannie counting the Quaker oats mini rice cakes that were in her bag. She was sure they had cheated her.

They had not.



This is a photo of the improv rehearsal I coached last week in Honolulu.


The new hot Doritos. Do they have these on the mainland?


John, Jeannie and Megan after we went snorkeling in Maui.


Verna's snack stand in Hilo. Apparently they had a very bad termite problem.

If you have slug problems, you can buy these in the candy aisles of Long's Drugs on any of the islands.


John ate a Loco Moco at the prestigous Pineapple Room.





This Olive Tapenade was a big hit at the Spaghetti Factory last week. It was sooooo good.


-- Post From My iPhone