Saturday, November 19, 2011

Kauai - Anini Beach and Aloha

October 29

Our last full day in Kauai. Wahhhhhhhh! Okay. Tantrum out of the way.

By the way, thank you, Karen, for making coffee every morning. You are a peach. I had yogurt 'n granola for breakfast today. You know, it's a good “breakfast in a hurry,” and it tides me over to lunchtime really well. Can't complain!

Well, yes, I actually can complain, but it's a very small complaint: Harry's cell phone rang the alarm at 2:55 a.m. Again. Sigh. I thought it was turned off, but NO-o-o-o.... I need to sleep. Okay. Complaint out of the way.

It was another fabulous day in paradise, and here's how it went:

We hit the road to go snorkeling at Anini Beach on the north side of the island. It's beautiful, reef-protected, relatively shallow (for good viewing), and there's hardly any current. Woohoo! It's great to actually move forward with very little effort when you kick with your fins. The water felt cooler here, but still very, very comfortable and nice.
Anini Beach. See how calm the water is?
The waves are breaking on the reef, off yonder.
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
It's sad that the coral at these beaches seems to be pretty much dead, but there were still some coral heads here and there that were quite nice, alive, and full of other living things. There were tons of little fishies. I was very proud of myself when I spotted an eel (one that's black with white spots) poking its head out of its hiding place. They blend so well that it's easy to miss them. 

Beautiful creature!
Photo by Bob Hampton. All rights reserved.
Visibility was so-so, and I was heading back to the beach for a rest when, suddenly, I saw a turtle! A large turtle was swimming right in front of me! I almost took in water in my excitement to tell the others, who were nearby, so they could see it, too. There I was with my face in the water, yelling, “Turtle, turtle!” Well, I'm sure it sounded more like, “Blurg! Blurg!” Then it occurred to me that I should raise my head, take out my snorkel, and then yell, “Turtle! Turtle!” So that's what I did, and Bob and Karen and Harry came over quickly to observe my “find.” We were able to observe this magnificent creature for quite some time. It swam at a very leisurely pace, surfacing for air, then diving down for a while, turning here and there, then surfacing again. It moved gently, slowly, majestically, like it had all the time in the world. I could hardly breathe, I was so overcome with emotion. It was awesome. What an amazing moment! What a beautiful world full of incredible creatures has been created for us to enjoy!

On the beach again, we were ready for a snack. There was a taco-truck-looking-vehicle in the parking lot, so we went over to investigate the roach coach. But it turned out to be an organic, raw-food vendor. It's called “Lilikoi,” which means “passion fruit.” Yes, indeed! We had a chocolate-banana-coconut milk smoothie. Oh, man! Delicious! Lilikoi is based at Anini, so be sure to check it out when you go. They also had delicious-looking salads and other food items, along with an extensive list of smoothie drinks. You can count on it being fresh, wonderfully flavorful, and good for you. Highly recommended.

Kilauea Lighthouse
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
What a view!
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
We hung out at Anini for a while. You'll want to, too. And then we started back. The Kilauea Lighthouse is just down the road, so we stopped to check that out. What a lovely spot! Great views, too.

See the name of the restaurant? You can't make this stuff up.
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
We stopped for lunch at Bubba's in Kapa'a (That's right...we'd done all of that before lunchtime!) and shopped at a craft market for souvenirs. I found a lovely batik sarong for my sarong collection. Whenever I go someplace tropical, I take the sarong from Bora Bora that was a gift from Karen, as well as the sarong purchased at my last vacation spot (in this case, Rarotonga). So, next time, it'll be Bora Bora and Kauai. Someday, when I go to Bora Bora, I'll get a new one there. A girl can dream.

Koloa Church
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
In Koloa, we returned Karen's rented mask. It really hit me that the trip was almost over, and I hate that feeling. It's so incredibly sad to be leaving each place, just when I've completely opened my heart to it. Tomorrow, it's up bright and early and away. Much, much too soon. I can see why people come to Kauai time and time again. I'd like to come back myself!

We finished the food in the refrigerator for dinner (I know. Not very exciting, but it has to be done), enjoyed one last Hawai'ian sunset, did laundry, packed our bags, and hit the sack.
One last sunset.
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.

It was time to say good-bye to Kauai. 

Aloha mai kakou.

Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.

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