Our love affair with Hawaii, 1977-2015

I’m always surprised when I think of how many trips we’ve taken to Hawaii. Although we’ve enjoyed every one, starting in 1977, I usually think that each will be our last, since we generally favor less “tourist-like” destinations. However, we do keep returning to the “magic” of the islands, and at last count it has been 10 trips for me and 11 for Dick!

Photos from 2015

2015: Kauai, Ono Family Restaurant
2015: Kauai, Ono Family Restaurant
2015: Kauai, Plantation Days 5K
2015: Kauai, Plantation Days 5K

Link to more information and pictures of our 2015 trip

Historic photos of Hawaii

1977: Honolulu Airport
1977: Honolulu Airport
1980: Kauai, Jill and Polly at Waimea Canyon
1980: Kauai, Jill and Polly at Waimea Canyon
1980: Kauai
1980: Kauai
1980: Waikiki Beach
1980: Waikiki Beach
1982: Kauai
1982: Kauai
1989: Big Island (Hawaii)
1989: Big Island (Hawaii)
1989: Big Island (Hawaii) lava
1989: Big Island (Hawaii) lava
1995: Kauai, wedding party
1995: Kauai, wedding party
2002: Luau on Kauai
2002: Luau on Kauai
2002: Kauai, Na Pali boat ride
2002: Kauai, Na Pali boat ride
2002: Kauai, family in Princeville
2002: Kauai, family in Princeville
2011: Oahu, USS Missouri
2011: Oahu, USS Missouri
2011: Oahu, weapons office that Dick painted
2011: Oahu, weapons office on the USS Missouri that Dick painted
2012: Kauai
2012: Kauai
2012: Kauai, "Livengoods" Market
2012: Kauai, “Livengoods” Market
2012: Kauai, Livengoods
2012: Kauai, Livengoods
2012: Kauai, Matthew
2012: Kauai, Matthew
2014: Oahu, Pearl Harbor survivor
2014: Oahu, Pearl Harbor survivor

Overview of our Hawaii experience

We’ve visited every major island except Molokai.

On Kauai we stayed at Poipu Beach before and after Hurricane Iwa, which struck in 1982. In 1995 Ellen and Rick were married on a beautiful Kauai beach. We’ve hiked Waimea Canyon too many times to count, and watched Spouting Horn change its “tune” over the years. Every time we return we look forward to the Portuguese bean soup at the Ono Family Restaurant.

On the “Big Island” we enjoyed the coffee and the volcano, which was actively erupting on one trip. The rangers let us get close enough to the moving lava to almost touch it!

On Maui we swam the seven pools on our way to the end of the road at Hana.

Dick has done two Road Scholar service trips to help restore the USS Missouri in Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu. I joined Dick on one of those, which included front-row seats at the annual December 7 memorial event.

Many of the trips were family affairs; we feel very lucky that every family member has participated at least once.

Journal of our family trip to Kauai, 1986

Below are random snippets about the family trip we took over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, 1986-1987 (Anna, Dick, Ellen, Tim, and Jill) 

(Almost) smiling faces at Spouting Horn on the island of Kauai
1986: (Almost) smiling faces at Spouting Horn on the island of Kauai

A pet pig just down the way from our condo, best buddies with the local dogs but not loved by all: one of his neighbors said he roots up plants and should be put into a cooking pot!

Jill’s flower lei at the Honolulu airport.

Ellen looking for surfers on the North Shore.

Charo’s restaurant.

Jill’s friend boxer pup on the last day.

Jill wandering alone on the beach behind the condo.

“Hang loose gecko” t-shirts.

Real gecko on the wall of our room.

Fireworks on New Year’s Eve – whole bricks shot off at once.

The luau that wasn’t at the Hilton – found another at the Kauai Resort with a fire eater, good drummers, real Hawaiian singers, and girls with pretty costumes.

Kayaking up the river at Nawiliwili with guide Shirley (a transported Arizona native) – we all got “wet bottom” awards.

Watching the Rose Bowl game in our condo – Arizona State won and Jeff got player of the game.

Thoroughly satisfying trip – kids were good company and nobody fought.

Wind surfing at Aini Beach – we got a board too small and sail too big so Tim couldn’t make it work.

Jill and Ellen had fresh perms, and looked cute.

Snorkeling at Poipu Beach – Jill even saw a snowflake eel.

Ellen and Tim would like to go to Jamaica next year to see Rastafarians.

Good weather all week – rain only at night.

Fiery accident on the main road killed part of one family and blocked traffic for hours.

Kapaa Fish and Chowder House served up a three-hour meal – their slow service sold lots of liquor and caused us some hysterics.

Ono’s Family Restaurant – dinner twice and also breakfast – good hash with poached egg and Portuguese bean soup.

Imu pork was strong-flavored and stringy, poi like Elmer’s glue or wallpaper paste.

Plane was over two hours late – we got free drinks and headsets.

The movie was “Top Gun” – macho and boring.

Tim was reading “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac.

We bought local-interest books: “Trembling of a Leaf” by Somerset Maugham, and “Hawaiian Reader.”

We bought the tape of Hawaiian music the bookstore was playing while we browsed.

I read “West with the Night” by Beryl Markham.

I had a painful case of tennis elbow from carrying suitcases.

Ellen bought presents for all her roommates – puka shells for Nick.

We went jogging along the beach – were sweating for an hour afterward because of humidity.

Jill enjoyed the company of Ellen and Tim – adopted their more sophisticated humor style.

Jill bought white shorts with little black palm trees.

Next time we need to remember that men with Hawaiian shirts get picked to do the hula at luaus (no, our guys didn’t get picked!).

We hereby resolve to take more such trips!