Well, I’m back home in North Carolina now. I’ve had quite a few impressions from this recent trip that I wanted to share with you. So, here goes:
- The Aloha spirit is alive and well! Each time I visit Hawaii, I always surprised at the kindness of the people of Hawaii. We experienced the warm Aloha spirit many times over on this trip. Here’s just one instance, we struck up a conversation with a fellow in Hanalei on the North Shore of Kauai, the next thing we know, he gave us a bag of sea shells. He wanted nothing in return. Wow!
- Andy and I both noticed that more of Hawaii has become accessible for the disabled. We noticed noticed several new ramps in Waimea Canyon and Kokee State Parks on Kauai. We also noticed how many curb ramps there were in Honolulu.
- Waikiki has really spiffed up! From the beautiful stone sidewalk along Kalakaua Avenue to the hotel facelifts, Waikiki is more attractive than ever.
- There’s many new posh shops along Kalakaua Avenue. I’d say that it now rivals Rodeo Drive. Unfortunately, I could only afford to window shop, but still that was fun!
- I appreciated the Waikiki Aloha Ambassadors that were around to answer questions. The night of my arrival, I needed directions and it was so nice to have the assistance of an Waikiki Aloha Ambassador. They’re very visible in neon green shirts. (Here’s an article with a photo of the ambassadors.)
- Hawaii restaurants, hotels and shops offer some phenomenal live entertainment! We heard Grammy award winning slack key guitar master Ledward Kaapana at Kona Brewing Company and Na Hoku Hanohano award winning artist Jerry Santos at Chai Island Bistro. (I’ll have more on these two great Oahu restaurants in the future.)
- I’m always amazed by the abundance things there are to do and see on the islands. Each time I visit, I end up leaving Hawaii with a to do list for my next visit. I have a feeling that this list will be never ending and I kind of like it that way.
- Even though I travel light with only carry-on luggage, I over packed again. There were three shirts and a skort that I didn’t wear at all. Next time, I’m going to practice more discipline and force myself to pack less. Will you hold me to this promise?