Matt's Corner

Hawaiian Holiday


Matt plans on eating like locals and when the morning’s downpour had turned into a warm blowing mist we set off in search of Oahu’s finest. One bite of the most excellent “Puka Dog” (a.k.a. the Hawaiian Hot Dog) and we agree to its unparalleled taste. My best description would fail in describing it… but it resembles an oversized sweet Hawaiian loaf (that completely envelopes the dog) which has been drizzled with a secret papaya-garlic sauce, a fruity relish and a unique Hawaiian mustard (a sweet-and-savory combo). You can also add any of their matchless Hawaiian secret recipe relishes and sauces….SO tasty!

Another great reason to love Hawaii = the localized weather; because if it’s raining where you are, there is almost always a sunny spot to be found around the coast. Our first trip to the North Shore consisted of (the real) shaved ice, Haleiwa Joes and the Kua Aina Sandwich Shop….

At sunset we shared a leisurely scenic drive back…. it started pouring a half mile from our hotel; making it easy to come indoors, pull back the curtains, open the balcony doors, climb into bed and drift off to the scents and sounds of Waikiki blowing in.


In Hawaii, the summer has a charming way of spinning itself out beyond the end of the season…. After yesterday’s drencher… today = the perfect beach day (another reason we love this part of the world)

I spent the afternoon along the shore with the sea all around and sand underfoot (Matt had demos at Kaiser). Unable to resist the gentle waves of Waikiki, I rented a board and surfed till there were literally bruises on my ribs. Matt found me napping on the beach, stole the surfboard and when I woke up he was paddling in…. hungry for dinner.

We sat down (at that perfect hour between daylight and darkness) for yummy fish tacos at Dukes Barefoot Bar. The view there is amazing… with the surf crashing before us we watched the evening sun go down behind the sea in a welter of liquid gold’s and reds. As the light gradually altered and the colors changed, Diamond Head turned pink and then a dusky blue. The sea was a mirror for the sky and when the sun had finally gone, it darkened to an inky indigo, starred by the riding lights of boats setting out for an evening at sea….. (Sigh) We highly recommend saving some room for a giant slice of Hula Pie!


The new route for morning’s run along the coast = up a small mountain overlooking the ocean. The reward = the views from the peak; where the land falls away on all sides and sudden, unexpected, breathtaking views reveal themselves J.

The snorkeling at Hanauma Bay was INCREDIBLE! We spotted tons of fish, even more coral, swam with a giant sea turtle and, at one point--way out past the buoys, even spotted a small reef shark. Afterwards, we sat on the warm sand in a comfortable silence, content to let the sun warm our skin, and the day pass us by. The western sea before us, a brilliant blue, danced with a thousand pennies; the sky was cloudless and the visibility clear as crystal. Imagine living here and looking at that every day of your life…..

After a yummy sushi dinner we enjoyed a gorgeous Oahu evening walking (the two miles) back to the condo and picked up some (Mauha Loa) dark chocolate covered macadamia nuts and wine on the way. Dessert from the balcony… J


My favorite coffee drink (an apricot soy latte from Coffee Bean in case you want to bring me one) was delivered by my most favorite person before I could even getout of bed! (Life is REALLY good!)

Our first visit to the Dole Plantation started with a train ride, where we learned all about the history of the pineapple, and ended with Koa wood souvenirs and dole whips! We also learned how to cut our own pineapple boats (½, ¼, hollow out, cut into small pieces, insert toothpicks).

One of the trips highlights = SUNSET BEACH!!! I was mesmerized by the fascination of a flooding December tide. The waves were “going off” (thank El Nino) as we watched (in disbelief) the World Cup of Surfing finals (the second jewel of the Triple Crown). We saw the day’s best ride, and Mick Fanning “rip” twenty foot waves!!

We took the long route home and stopped off at one of the many Shrimp Carts. I highly recommend them… but DO NOT go into their bathrooms (you may catch an unknown incurable disease). Back in Honolulu, we shared dinner at “The Counter” where you’re greeted with a clipboard and an extensive list of fresh mouth-watering ingredients that allow you to build your own gourmet burger. Their egg-nog shakes… bliss!


Matt had a busy work day…. so I went to the beach solo (I was really torn up about it). Given that my ribs had not yet recovered from surfing, I decided to try paddle-boarding…. LOVED it! (Matt if you need Christmas present ideas….) I never could quite manage to paddle into a wave and remain standing upright, but with a 10 foot board, I was fantastic on my knees… The locals prolly got a good laugh at the silly girl who kept throwing her paddle in the air victoriously as she caught her baby waves practically sitting down…. J It was SO fun!


Almost the entire day was spent with Matt on the beach! J We started by renting chairs and paddleboards (Matt picked it up right away, so now we must buy one…) and decided to close out the day kayaking. As we paddled out to get past the breaks, waves kept crashing over the front, soaking me from head to toe. We did catch ourselves a few waves (which was a hoot) and Matt managed to hit me in the head twice with his paddle. None-the-less, a day in the ocean with my baby = Spectacular!When we returned the kayak, we learned that we were “in the wrong part of the ocean” 95% of the time and that we could’ve “incurred fines”…. (It’s not like there were oceanic traffic signs out there…. who knew?) After a long afternoon nap we stuffed ourselves at Dukes once more. Sadly, it was time to pack up, return the rental car, down Dramamine and (regrettably) board the turbulence filled red eye….


1 comment:

Miller Family said...

two things- Hula Pie and Dole Whip! Oh yum! Just discovered the Dole whip @ D-land! :)A little closer than Hawaii- yet I am sure much more enjoyable there!