I moved to Hawaii to enjoy the weather, the people, the Aloha (don’t snicker, it’s real!), and some of the fine things available here to do. But I’ve been busy. Very busy. Not much time to do anything other than work and see to my daughter’s well-being. Of course, I moved here for my dream job, too. Don’t mention to Linda that I listed that last.
Today we decided to take a day and do something fun. Something touristy.
We went aboard the Hula Kai, a large catamaran, for the day to snorkel and soak up the sun. It was great! I usually despise boats with motors on them, but I’m glad I made an exception this time. It wasn’t noisy or stinky, and my sails-only snobbery stayed mostly in low gear. Being the low season and an exceptionally rough day, there were few people aboard. We’ve had some wind out of the Northwest, making the surf pretty big and scary, and while the surfers have been thrilled, and the sound of the surf at night has lulled me to sleep faster than usual, it hasn’t been good for the tourists. Today it was good for us because we felt like we had a private boat and crew.
The boat headed down south the Kealakekua Bay, one of the most beautiful and peaceful spots on this side of the island. I think it’s the best snorkeling in Hawaii, all the way around. If you click on the link, zoom out and look up, to Keauhou Bay. That’s where I live.
I have always had this Jacques Cousteau fantasy, and have loved the water all my life. Scuba, snorkeling, sailing, boating, floating, whatever you can do in the water and almost but not quite get killed, I have tried it. Today I got to try a new thing! A Sea Rocket let’s you speed through the water and maneuver really fast, so you can keep up with fast fish and get down to the bottom really quickly before that Moray eel sucks his head back in or away from the shoreline before the swells crash you against fire coral. I really felt like flying and swimming all at the same time. Good thing I remembered to hold my breath, most of the time.
That’s not me in the photo, but it is the handsome gent who took me on a guided tour of underwater life there in Kealakekua Bay. We saw plenty of beautiful fish, many of which are very familiar to me from years of diving and snorkeling in the Caribbean, and a lot of new ones, too. No underwater camera, alas, so this site by photographer Keoki and Yuko Stender will have to do for demonstration.
After a lovely lunch we moved around a little, tried another bay at Honaunau, off Pu’uhonua o Honaunau (Place of Refuge). In ancient times, any Hawaiian who had broken taboo, or KAPU, could be forgiven if only he could run fast enough to beat his executioners (I imagine them swinging swinging shark tooth clubs) to the Place of Refuge. It was too rough to snorkel there, so we returned to Kealakekua, to moor right off the monument to Captain Cook, who there met his untimely end at the hands of outraged Hawaiians in 1799. I guess it was too far to run to the Place of Refuge.
We’re happy to have discovered Hula Kai, which drops anchor a five-minute walk from our place and does spectacular nighttime manta ray dives. That’s next on our list of touristy things to do.
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