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1/23/2019 Memories of vacation

Between the cold and the problems we've been having since getting back (more on that another time), I'm wishing I was still in Hawaii. But nothing to do about that. Anyway, let's continue with the travelogue.

January 5th (Saturday): Beach Day
We decided to spend out last day on Maui at the beach. We were originally planning to head back to Makena Beach, but my mom really wanted to try out Wailea Beach so we ended up there. It's a pretty nice stretch of beach as well. Not as long as some, and a little crowded, but with good sand and surf. It also turns out that the path along the beach goes far past the Grand Wailea. We walked on it quite a while, past lots of other fancy hotels, before turning back. It looked like it might actually go all the way to Kihei.
We spent a pleasant few hours there and, on the way back, stopped at another beach, but not to swim or lay out on the sand. Ho'okipa Beach is a relatively small beach out near Paia. It's kind of rocky and has a lot of waves so it's not a good spot for sunbathing or swimming, though some surfers seem to like it. Its real claim to fame, however, is that it's a popular hang out for sea turtles. Lots and lots of sea turtles. Yeah, that's pretty much all turtles in that photo. There's supposed to be larger numbers at night but there had to be 50 - 60 when we stopped by that afternoon. They were mostly just sleeping on the beach, though occasionally a new one would come up on shore or one of the ones on the beach would decide to go back in the water. That involved a lot of awkward shuffling as they tried to climb over each other to get where they wanted to go. While I've seen sea turtles before I'd never seen anywhere close to that many at once and it was pretty cool.

Random Hawaii Comment: Thoughts on Maui
Maui is certainly slower than Oahu and, while there, I missed the convenience and walkability of Honolulu and the heavy Japanese influence. That said, Maui has its charms as well. The small towns like Paia and Lahaina are fun to visit and, while Maui doesn't have anywhere near the restaurant selection of Honolulu, there are still some very good ones. Plus the beaches are great. Oahu is definitely the place to go if you want a lot of things to do but, if you're looking for a slower vacation with lots of beach time Maui is a pretty good choice. Connie and I both enjoyed it there more than we expected and look forward to going back.

Well, I was hoping to finish the travelogue today but my web editor crashed while I was writing this and I had to start over so I'll stop here and continue next time.



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1/21/2019 Here we go again...

Well, it's been a nice vacation. Not quite as relaxing as I hoped, and I didn't get as much work done as I would have liked, but still good. And tomorrow it's back to work. Unfortunately, there's been some issues since we got home...but I'll talk about that another time. Today, let's get some more of the travelogue finished.

Around Maui: Haiku
Haiku is the town on Maui were my parents' place is. It's up in the mountains near Makawao (another artsy tourist town, though smaller than the others) and there isn't really much of a town, so to speak. Though there is a large park with an enormous playground. It's really not a tourist destination and there isn't much of anything to see. That said, if you're in the area visiting Makawao or some such, there are a couple of good restaurants. My top recommendation there is Nuka, a Japanese place that, though not entirely authentic, is good and has a very creative menu. Though it's only open for dinner, doesn't take reservations, and tends to fill up quickly. So you really need to get there around 4:30 or so if you want to avoid a wait.

January 4th (Friday): The Mill House
My mom had been wanting to go to the Mill House for a while so she decided to take Connie and I before we left Maui. So what's the Mill House? It actually reminds me a lot of the Dole Plantation back on Oahu if you're familiar with that (or read my travelogue entry on it). Basically, it's an old farm and mill house that's been converted into a tourist attraction. There's a huge gift shop, and a few smaller gift shops scattered around the area amidst some nice little tropical gardens you can walk through. It's a pretty place, and there's a zip line course and some bus tours of the farm (naturally, those cost). The biggest draw though, is the restaurant. It's a farm to table place with a very creative menu and neat decor. Really good food (some Italian, some Japanese, some fusion, etc.) and a great view. A little on the expensive side, but if you're ok with that it's certainly worth a visit. If you're not going to eat at the restaurant, it's hard to say if visiting the Mill House is worth it. It's a pretty setting, though Hawaii is hardly lacking those, and there's nothing special about the gift shop or anything. There's other (probably better) zip lines around too. Though there is the farm tour if that sounds interesting. Anyway, we had a great meal and Zack got to run around and chase birds for a while afterwards, so it made for a fun stop.

If I remember right, there's two more travelogue entries to go so I'll try and get those posted later this week.

See you Wednesday!


1/16/2019 Heading home

It's been a fun trip. I didn't exactly relax as much as I would have liked, or get as much work done as I hoped, but it's still been good. Tonight though, we're heading back to Virginia, winter weather, and (in a few days) work. There's only several travelogue entries left and I was hoping to post a couple more today but I need to get some sleep (since I probably won't be able to on the plane). Everything should update normally on Friday so long as things are ok at home and I'm not too worn out from the flights.



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