Thursday, June 17, 2010

After Yet Another Long Hiatus

My goodness; is it June already?! It's hard for me to reconcile the date with the fact that I've been officially a New Yorker for a full year and a New Orleanian expat for that amount of time. I was looking forward to visiting the Big Easy last month for me and Boy's one-year wedding anniversary, but that ended up not panning out. However, at least it was due to happy circumstances that it wasn't to be, since apparently, May is off-season in Hawaii!

My thinking is this: East Coasters tend to travel to the Caribbean for the shorter flights and all-inclusive packages, and so Hawaii, with its year-round perfect weather, becomes a costly alternative during the spring months - better saved for the gray and dreary winters here.

So Boy and I decided that it would be the smartest thing we ever did for under a grand each (for lodging and flights) if we rang in our second year of marriage with as much aplomb as our first ... and at just as good of a bargain rate. We cheaped out on the hotel, staying at the Aqua Aloha Surf & Spa, which was only a three-star hotel, two short blocks from the beach and one short block from the picturesque hotel. We banked on getting a free upgrade (score!) for our anniversary, and paid to upgrade to the next level. The original room was motel-esque, tiny with a dark shower stall, crooked sink, and a full-size bed. Clean, but ... ick.

Because we were already upgraded one level, it was a matter of only fifty more dollars to get the suite, which had a sitting area, larger bathroom with tub, king-sized bed, and a corner view of Diamond Head. Granted, from this room we no longer had a view of the ocean, but the canal was still picturesque and for that amount of change ... duh, it was a no-brainer.

As for me, part of the reason I'd decided to go with this hotel is because I'm all about value and all about free food. The free breakfast sold me, but due to a combination of jet-lag and insane, ass-crack-of-dawn, we ironically ended up missing the free breakfast almost every day! However, it wasn't that big of a loss. The to-order pancakes smelled delicious, but the muffins lost my interest after the first day, and I wasn't on vacation to eat fruit - I was on vacation to be a fat-ass in all my newly tankini'd glory.

We stayed in Waikiki Beach, Oahu for a week, exploring some of the most beautiful beaches, interesting culture, and stunning landscapes in the world, including an all-day trip to the lava fields and volcanoes of the Big Island, and sampling out-of-the-way food throughout. More to come, I swear, on all of this, as soon as I find my camera again. It's been M.I.A. since we got back at the end of May, in protest perhaps, of the abuse I rained upon it during our weeklong trip to paradise.

The synopsis, though, is this: Oahu is all they say it is, and I can't wait to revisit. Me, the vacationer that doesn't want to double-dip destinations for fear of wasting an opportunity, wants to go back. That should say something. But the food, the fooooood, is amazing. Fresh fish, great greens, beautiful fruit that falls from the sky like a true land of bounty. Seriously, more to come, peppered with pictures of the perfection that is the South Pacific.