Hi again everyone! Sorry about yesterday's lame post. I can't even begin to tell you how tired I was. I feel a lot better today. It was still a long day at work, but for some reason, I was calm and relaxed and the second quarter is closed! Enough about work. Let's about Hawaii. It's our first full day on the Big Island and I can't wait to tell you about it, so let's go!
As you can imagine, MT wanted to get out to a beach to do some snorkeling as soon as he could. I'd purchased a guidebook, on the advice of my friend Nicole, called Hawaii The Big Island Revealed. I'd been thumbing through the book for a couple of months prior to the trip, so I was familiar with the layout of the book and how the information is presented. If you are going to Hawaii, I highly recommend getting a book, and this one is great. It's humorous and informative. We used it almost every day.
The first day I was looking for a decent snorkeling spot that wasn't too far from our resort. I came across a blurb on an area called Puako. It was close and the book said the snorkeling was good and the chances of swimming with and/or seeing turtles was high, so everyone (except the teenager) piled into the minivan and away we went. Here was the view as we headed up the road from our resort:
We followed the signs and turned down this little road where there were mostly houses but there were also public access signs along the way. We pulled over at the fourth public access sign and decided to take our chances on what we would find. By the way, the link that I shared above on Puako? It's the first time I've ever looked at that website and I can tell you that the part of Puako Bay I saw doesn't look much like what is shown on the website. Maybe we stopped too soon because here is what we saw when we got to the beach:
That's a lot of lava! You can see beach over to the left and up a little bit, but we didn't go over there. There was a little patch of sand, about where I'm standing to take this photo, and I spread out my towel there. I walked across the lava (it's slippery when wet!) and stood in the water over there to the right. MT and Kelly wasted no time and got in the water quickly.
Denise joined them in the water. Linda thought about going out, but it was quite rocky and it was a difficult entry. Jake just sat on a rock with his feet in the water. I looked around a little. There was a tidepool with some spiky urchins that were interesting to see. I settled on my towel and listened to some music and watched what was happening around me. The music didn't last long because I don't get to hear the ocean very often, so I listened to the ocean instead.
The brothers had been out snorkeling for a little while when Kelly popped up and yelled, "I saw a turtle! Mom! I saw a turtle!" He was so excited and he sounded just like a little kid. How exciting for him. MT didn't see the turtle; I can't remember if Denise said she saw it. They saw lots of fish and some coral. MT said it was a nice area.
On our way out, we passed some ladies who were sitting on a little patch of sand. We asked them if they had seen any turtles and one lady said, "Oh yeah! There are four of them right over there!" and she pointed to a shallow area just steps from where we were standing. We scurried over to the shallows and sure enough...turtles! There was one turtle hanging out by himself in one pool:
And there were three turtles hanging out together, but separate, in another pool:
If you ask me what kind of turtles these are, I will tell you that I don't know, but maybe they are Hawaiian green sea turtles.
I love turtles!
In the afternoon we drove to Kona to go to Costco where we bought more than we should have/needed to. It was fun though. Costco in Kona sells surfboards and paddle boards and other beach/water stuff. We went back to the Waikoloa area and had a nice lunch of Costco roasted chicken, salad, chips and dip and ice cream.
In the afternoon I spent a little time at the pool and I met a lady who lived in the condos and she told me all about places we should go and things we should do. I was excited and went back to tell MT what she said when I was distracted by the setting sun. I'm a sucker for sunsets! MT, T and I jumped in the van and headed to the beach to see the sunset, but we were a little late.
I took this photo right beside the car. That water you see is one of the fish ponds. There is a trail that meanders through the pond area and that's where I took this photo:
The colors were spectacular. The sun had already set by the time we got to the water and the colors were fading. There is a trail that runs along the rocky beach there and we walked up the trail a little way until the light had faded, which happens really fast. We walked back to the car and headed back to the condo. We probably went over to the family condo for a beer and to chat about the day and plan for the next.
It was a fun first day on the Big Island. My favorite thing was the turtles, but I quite liked the sunset as well. If only we had got a move on and driven down to the beach area sooner. Of course, we didn't really know what we were doing or where we were going. That was part of the fun.
Am I being too wordy with these posts? I want to tell you what it was like and what we were doing and seeing, but I've been worried that the posts are too long. I don't know if I would shorten them though. Someday I may be thinking of Hawaii and want to come back and read these posts. :)