Friday, September 14, 2007

Working Backwards - Hawaii

So this is what we had to leave. Waaaah!!!!! I've said it before but the thing about Hawaii is that you always have access to beauty - whether that be the beach or the mountains. I'm doing the Hawaii recap from the end of the trip to the beginning since the food fun didn't really start when I was there. So our last day was Thursday and we were all leaving at the end of the day (in my case at the VERRRRY end of the day). We decided to go to the Halekulani Hotel in Waikiki for their reasonably priced elegant breakfast with one of the best views of Waikiki beach. On the way we decided to take route 72 that goes along the tip of Oahu past Hanauma Bay. It's spectacularly scenic with rough barren rocky terrain that makes you feel like you're on another planet.

We ate a very leisurely breakfast at Orchids, the hotel's upscale dining place that was right on the beach. This was where J and his parents ate their first morning in Hawaii and it could not have been better. The service was friendly and warm, the views were spectacular, and the ambiance was bright, clean, and elegant. My parents would have gone nuts over the vast array of exotic orchids. My father-in-law and I ordered the haupia French toast with the coconut syrup. This was regular French toast with the traditional Hawaiian coconut custard in the middle. J ordered the blueberry pancakes and his mother ordered the three-egg omelette. We also order popovers for the table. Here's mine.

Food porny enough?

What I loved about my French toast was that the custard and the syrup with light. You weren't going into sugar shock after the meal. After breakfast we left FIL reading the paper on the hotel's lanai while the rest of us did some last-minute gift shopping at the zillions of souvenir shops in Waikiki. This left us plenty of time to get to the airport... where the shit hit the fan. As it turns out, I misread my flight information and I totally missed my flight that left WEDNESDAY and flew in to DC THURSDAY. This led to some begging and pleading with ATA airlines to let me fly to which they lied through their teeth and said it was overbooked and I would be flying out that night.

J is totally my hero because he found a wireless hotspot, broke out of the laptop and booked THE VERY SAME FLIGHT via the Southwest website (Southwest and ATA are partners). Unfortunately, I was still sweating bullets (literally!) because we hadn't confirmed a seat. With my loving partner saying he wasn't going to leave Hawaii without having me confirmed on a flight, he and my FIL got Southwest to talk to ATA and give me a confirmed seat. Nevertheless, I waited five hours with my book and laptop to make sure I was the first in line when the ticket counter opened at 6:45 pm. After that, everything went fine.

I lounged around the gate getting some work done and reading until my flight left at 10:45 pm. I did have to buy a new t-shirt and one of those neck things for the long flight. But I just felt lucky I had a spouse who could keep it together while I was completely losing it. As we work backwards there will be more food content.

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