Player in a ‘sun ceremony’ – part of the hotel Luau.

In 2005 we went on vacation to Hawaii – specifically to Maui. This was the first time I’d been there. What a wonderful place! I really felt comfortable there. Of course parts of it are very “touristy” and other parts are just like the rest of the USA (e.g. A Starbucks around every corner). But the eastern side of the Island is largely undeveloped. To me the whole island has an almost magical feel.

Hana Coast

Roast Pig

Makenna Beach

Waterfall. I don’t recall which (there are at least 16) but possibly Alelele.  I wish it had been Helele’ike’oha because I like the name, but it isn’t.

We were supposed to fly back through Honolulu on the island of Oahu. We weren’t stopping there – just changing planes on route to Los Angeles for a News Years eve celebration with my wife’s family. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) there was a problem with the plane and we were forced to spend the night in Honolulu. The next flight was not until the following afternoon. As a “history buff” I’d always wanted to go to Pearl Harbour. Now I had a chance. I’d also always wanted to see a Battleship. I’m British and was disappointed to discover that no British battleship still exists. When you think that the UK was the pre-eminent naval power for so long it seems incredible that not one of these behemoths has been preserved. The USA has done a much better job. I had been thinking of going to see the USS Massachusetts in Fall River, Mass or the US New Jersey in Camden, New Jersey. Here I was just around the corner from the New Jersey’s sister ship: The USS Missouri, the very ship on which the Japanese surrender was accepted at the end of the Second World War. I couldn’t miss this opportunity so off I went. I would have liked to have visited the Arizona memorial too, but the lines were long and I didn’t have the time. Then it was off back to the hotel and to the airport. I left Hawaii with considerable regret. We would be back though…but that’s a topic for another post.

USS Missouri with the Arizona memorial in the background.

Some of the big guns of the USS Missouri.

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