I am taking the 'lazy' way out and putting up a post that is almost entirely photos. Deal with it. I'm just happy I've managed to maintain my attention span long enough to get a post UP.
We were fortunate to be in Hawaii during the Lantern Floating Ceremony. What better way to honor my friend than by floating a lantern in his memory. And my brain was actually engaged so I remembered to gather some sand from the beach in addition to a few pictures that I can send to his family.
|One side of my lantern.|
|The Boy and The Girl each had a panel and left notes to their grandfather.|
|All those lanterns...such a peaceful ceremony.|
We also had the opportunity to hike up to the Pillboxes overlooking Lanikai Beach Park and watch the moon rise. You have to time it right - sunset and sunrise cannot be too far apart or else you find yourself sitting on a rock into the wee hours of the morning. Which is less than fun. Friends of ours brought cheese, crackers, and grapes...everything but the wine! The evening started off cloudy and we had a few bursts of rain but it finally cleared and the moon rise was glorious!
|We hike in style.|
|Moonrise over Lanikai|
We have been to Pearl Harbor before but had not been on to the USS Missouri. Actually, I have been but back when it was still in service. A friend of mine served on her during the Gulf War and I was able to welcome him home from his deployment which was the Mighty Mo's final cruise.
|The Surrender Deck on the USS Missouri|
On our bus ride over to the Missouri, they stopped at the Pacific Aviation Museum. If you've never been, I strongly encourage you to include it in your tour. It's a great museum and you really learn a lot about the air aspect of WWII. They are in the process of restoring the tower (below).
|Pacific Aviation Museum at Ford Island|
|The Tree of Life|
And, finally, no trip to Hawaii is complete without time spent on the North Shore, at sunset. If MacGyver weren't back in the Land of Oz, waiting for us, I'd still be sitting on the North Shore...it's a good thing I love him!
Leaving Hawaii this time around was not nearly as brutal as it was last time. It was hard but nowhere near as painful. Maybe because I've made up my mind that we WILL move back at some point. Or maybe because MacGyver was waiting for us on the other end. Or maybe because, as wonderful as it was to stay at my friend's house while we were there, it wasn't our home.
We did not get to check off even half of our "to do" list because our overriding mantra on this trip was "People before places". Therefore we chose to spend time with people instead of going to all of the places we wanted to visit. And even in doing so, ran out of time to see everyone we wanted to see. Obviously 4 weeks is not enough. It didn't help that The Girl picked up a NASTY cold during our last week on island and that prevented us from seeing a lot of people - I hate spreading germs about unnecessarily. And she was wiped out which cut our days short.
But it was SO good to be back. It was nice to be able to kind of slide right back into our lives in a way. And yet, at the same time, it's true that "you can never go home again". It wasn't the same but we didn't really expect it to be so which made the shock of it all a lot less noticeable. But things have changed - people have changed, places have changed. It's inevitable. And it will be even more noticeable the next time we go back. I worry that we'll lose that bond that we have right now. We lost it with Colorado - being gone for 14 years will do that. My hope and prayer is that it won't take us 14 years to get back to Colorado.
Hope you enjoyed the pictures! I'm off to go sleep in the frigde - we are into the triple digits here and no relief in sight.