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Hawaii 2015

Yes it has been awhile since or last post and it has also been awhile since our last vacation, so here goes! Back to Hawaii we went, our second visit and my second birthday spent there! Our last time in Hawaii saw us in Maui, this time we tried the island of Kauai! It is gorgeous and of course we loved it! The first thing I did was bitch about the humidity…..but that is just me! We drove up to Princeville where our condo was located. We stayed at the Makai Beach Club Cottages which was part of our timeshare network! They were a bit older, but all remodeled and very accommodating and the staff was excellent!

Our first couple of days were spent getting food and supplies, figuring out what activities we wanted to schedule, and getting our bearings and exploring the island. We decided to drive all the way around to the island to the west side which we did and went all the way to the end of the road to Polihale State Park! Absolutely beautiful and the longest stretch of beach in Hawaii. Go there if you visit Kauai, but be prepared for a long drive down a very rough old dirt road. On the way back, we just looked and stopped at anything that interested us. We drove down into Poipu and wow!!!! That is a very cool place and is on the mark for a future stay! We strolled the beach and found our way to the beach bar at the Marriot Waiochai Beach Club. We could only stay for a couple of drinks as we had to head back and get our activity schedule, but we planned to return later in the week for a hang out on the beach there! The next day we went and got some snorkeling gear and hit the beaches of the north coast, Anini Beach and Hideaway Beach. It was fun, but the tide was low so the water was shallow and you had to be very careful not getting yourself banged up against the reefs! We then dropped back into the town of Hanalei Bay and hit one of the local restaurants for dinner. It was a great vacation so far!

Our first excursion was sooooo much fun! We did the kayaking trip up the Wailua River. We kayaked for awhile then hiked into the back country and ended up at a magical place called the Secret Falls! You can only get there by boat and hike, there are no roads! It was beautiful. I have videos on our YouTube Page, go check it out! We ate lunch in front of the falls then hiked back out and kayaked back down the river! Very fun trip! Another cool and very fun trip we did was a catamaran ride on the Na Pali coast. We saw some beautiful sights and went snorkeling at the Lehua rock, part of an extinct volcano cone. After, they served us lunch and we had an “exciting ride” back to the dock. We headed back to Poipu for another look around and came across The Spouting Horn, a blowhole that shoots water out of the rocky coast……beautiful! Our last organized excursion was a tubing trip through the old Lihue Plantation! This is an old sugar plantation that was in use in the 1800’s. You don a lighted helmet and tube through irrigation canals and tunnels that were hand dug by plantation workers in 1870. It was finished off by a picnic lunch next to a river in a serene park. Again, money well spent on another fun excursion.

Aside from excursions, we did A LOT of driving around the island. We saw the Kilauea Lighthouse, drove to the end of the north road at Ke’ e Beach, hit some of the many various roadside farmers markets, ate at some of the local eateries: Tiki Iniki, Kalypso, Bouchons, Olympic Cafe, caught some rays at a couple of different beaches, and spent the last day (my birthday, second one in Hawaii) sipping cocktails and eating a wonderful assortment of pupus at the St Regis Resort. What a gorgeous place. If we can ever afford it, we are staying there! We watched our last sunset as a duo played genuine Hawaiian music in the lounge, a very emotional point! So we have now been to Kauai and Maui and we have decided we like Kauai much better. It is just so beautiful there!

And so our wonderful Hawaiian vacation came to end and once again having to face reality, we loaded up and headed off to the airport! On the way, disaster almost struck. A construction truck made an abrupt stop on the road ahead of us. The car in front saw it, we saw it, but the guy behind me didn’t! There we are, two small cars watching what is going on in front of us and here comes an inattentive tard in a Toyota Tundra that can see over both of us barreling toward our rear end. I thought in the split seconds I had, that he was going to blast us and ruin the end of paradise. Last day, on the way to the airport, in a rental car, in a no fault state, and possibly injured, just great!!!! Luckily he came to a screeching halt just inches away from our bumper. I thought briefly about getting out and taking the phone he was probably looking at and shoving it up his rectum, but figured against it after swallowing my stomach that was in the back of my throat and regaining my composure! The best thing about coming back home, was seeing the excitement of our boy Cordell upon seeing us come through the door. Thanks for reading our post and pictures coming soon……Mahalo!

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Vacation 2013 Part One

It is vacation time again and we took two glorious weeks off!! The weeks were as separate as night and day and we start off with part one, the first week! This was the fun one. We got or trailer hitched up and made our way down to Oregon to hook up with three other couples and their trailers to make the Crazy Caravan! After enduring the horrible Friday afternoon traffic in Portland, we finally made our first destination and hooked up with the first couple (Rich and Pam) in Eugene. Our overnight stay was at Premier RV Resort which is a clean and convenient stop for an overnight stay! We had a nice evening hanging out and catching up.

Our next stop and destination was near Cave Junction, OR at the Country Hills Resort. There we hooked up with the rest of the gang, Patti & Bob, and Rob & Ursie. It was hotter than hell and luckily we had power to run our A/C cause it was a furnace! The place was nice and tucked back into the woods but soon we felt a strange vibe about the place. There wasn’t anything wrong with the place, just strange and had some strange folks staying in the other sites! More about that later! It was also where some trailer breakdowns started occurring. Bob’s brand new rig had one of the cabinet and doors come away from the mount. Rich’s fairly new trailer’s water pump started leaking. Our shower stall started leaking water onto the floor when showering. That just took some heavy duty caulking to finally get it to stop! I had recently bought a new fangled PocketHose that seemed perfect for the trailer! I was excited as I hooked it up, it expanded, and water flowed into the trailer….all was well with the world! My trailer buds were ready to buy one ASAP! The very next day this happened:

What a piece of “made in China” shit!!!! Do NOT buy one of these pieces of crap!!! That deflated my bubble and back to the old stiff, hard to manage, regular hoses we went. At night we would hear strange noises and see shadows in the woods and out of our trailers. Scary and weird! Then to top it off, we had the “magic mushrooms boys” across the way from us. Twice they brought us various containers, one being a blue pumpkin candy holder and the other a glass with figures of nude females on the sides, filled with glass beads. Then on the way out, I ran into him again and he offered me some of his magic little shrooms of which I courteously declined. The big highlight of the stay was taking a trip through the Oregon Caves. That was a blast and it was a refreshingly 44 degrees in them also and the caves themselves were fascinating! Another highlight was all piling into the McEvoy rig and playing Cards Against Humanity! Yes, we are all horrible people! It was nice to finally pull out of there and head on down the road!

Down the road meant driving into Northern California and heading toward the coast and into the redwoods. As we did that, we watched the temperature plummet from the low 100’s into a very cool and comfortable low 70’s. i may speak for myself but I was now a very happy camper! Our next stop was at Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. It was a beautiful place hugging the Smith River. We took a nice hike into the majestic giants and felt really small and insignificant against these beauties of Nature. We decided to take a break from campground cooking and cleaning up after and drove into a fog shrouded Crescent City and located a nice restaurant, the Harbor View Grotto, and had a decent meal, drinks, and camaraderie.

Up into the Oregon Coast we went to our next destination, Humbug Mountain State Park. I had driven by this locale many, many times in the past and had never stopped. It was a very nice campground and just a short walk to the beach where whales were spouting off in the distance. We hiked the Humbug Mountain Trail, which was a pretty steep trip and surprisingly offered few good views of the coast and ocean, but was beautiful none the less. Then the inevitable occurred as it always does when Rich and I get together, we got really spanked on Jager and stayed out on the beach until 3am with our girls. We were looking at the mountain in the darkness and saw lights among the trees and actually thought there were hikers up there in the dark. It turned out to be the full moon rising up from behind the trees! I didn’t feel too hot the next morning and also pulled my back out, just great for the rest of the vacation. I managed to get camp up with help from Rich and Bob and hobbled on to the next and final stop.

Cape Perpetua was our final stop of this fun trip. In my opinion it was the most beautiful part. The coast of Oregon is at its most rugged and captivating along this stretch. It took awhile to get there, as I was contacting my local doctor trying to get a prescription for something, but after a long wait in the parking lot of a Safeway, they declined to get me anything. So I just winged it with a little help from my buddy Rob who shed some of his muscle relaxers to get me through the worst of it. Since some of us were either injured or just worn out, we did minimal hiking. We went up to the top of the Cape and went out to the rock shelter. We also went into the town of Yachats and had big Bob’s 60th birthday dinner at Ona Restaurant. It was a great dinner and we had a fantastic waitress who endured our craziness and partying. Bob had a good time on his milestone day and it was a great fun trip with some great fun friends. Check out the pictures in the photo set. Stay tuned for part two of the 2013 vacation……more work…less play on that one!

Caribbean Cruise 2013

Nieuw Amsterdam

Nieuw Amsterdam

Once again we sailed the high seas and again it was on Holland America. This is our third cruise on this line and have never had a bad experience (I assume you have seen the news). We had a great occasion also as it was our twenty year anniversary!!!! What a better way to spend it than on a glorious ocean liner with a beautiful wife!!

We started by taking a red-eye flight to Ft Lauderdale, my first time to Florida! The problem with that was our arrival was very early in the morning and we couldn’t board the ship until early afternoon. We killed time by hanging out in a Starbucks and walking around a shopping center that most stores hadn’t even opened yet……booooring! When we finally were in the boarding area, we had a big surprise for some friends of ours. Cordell had to stay back in Snoqualmie. He gets to go over and stay with Jenny, our pet sitter! When she picked him up, she was on her way to take care of our friends Rich and Gloria Monsoor that live up here on the Ridge. We talked about where we were going and she said it sounded very familiar. She checked their itinerary, and we were on the same cruise! What is weird about this is, it is the SECOND time it has happened! They were on our last two-week cruise to Alaska! When we found them in the boarding area, they were floored! Now we had cruise buddies!

It was a wonderful cruise and the weather was warm and the seas usually calm. We made stops at Grand Turks where we did a Segway tour and some awesome snorkeling. The overall impression we had there wasn’t that good. People seemed lazy and there was litter and trash everywhere. Seen it, don’t need to go back. Then we hit San Juan, Puerto Rico! What a vibrant place and pretty clean. We hit the Bacardi Distillery and went to the old fort of El Morro and walked through the old tunnels and took great pictures and a video of the surrounding area! Next we stopped in St Maarten on the Dutch side of Philipsburg. It was pretty hot and muggy there but we absolutely loved the place. It was so cool and the people were happy and content. The place was spotless. We walked about the shops and along the boardwalk. We stopped at the Blue Bitch Bar for some refreshingly cold beers and something to eat! Across the Bay we saw some condos that we may be able to stay in via our timeshare so we may be back to the beautiful place! Our last stop was at Half Moon Cay which is a very beautiful island, but owned by the cruise lines and just a place for the passengers to drop some more money! It was fun anyway and they provided a good BBQ! Then it was back to Florida boo hoo! Since we had almost a full day to kill since we were taking a late flight back to Seattle, we decided to do one more excursion. This one was to the Everglades for an airboat ride and a visit to the wild animal center there! It also included a transfer to the airport so that worked out great! We only saw one alligator on the boat ride. The Everglades are very dry and this upsets them and they move to other areas with deeper waters. The animal center was very cool. Debbie held a baby alligator and even touched the tail end of a huge boa which is a feat in itself since she is terrified of snakes. Finally we got on the plane for an uneventful trip home. It was a great time! Check out the pictures here! Can’t wait to see what happens during the next twenty years!

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