Another crazy busy day for our big crew — all 10 of us got out on a boat to see some marine life. Captain Kelsey and her all female crew (love it!) were great and accommodating to our needs and our foibles, like my incorrect assumption that we arrive by 8 am and not by 7:30 as stated on their website (oops!) or our four littles who required extra patience and care getting their gear on. Between Casey getting a little motion sick (we came expecting and prepared for it as she has a weak stomach), all the ear plugs, the masks and snorkels that weren’t the right color or size, and the fins that didn’t fit (or float, either as we discovered, sorry Captain Kelsey) those ladies at Adventure X Boating earned their keep today and some good tips. Paige learned that she is just a little freaked out in open water but did get to see a turtle swim right by before she hurried back onto the safety of the boat.
I have made three attempts in my life to swim with dolphins in the wild. When I spoke to Kelsey on the phone a month ago, she said that they almost always find dolphins withing about 20-30 minutes. Of course, not today! But we did get to see some whales coming up for air and that was pretty cool. And of course, the turtle, mentioned earlier. But I had come for the dolphins! After about an hour or so of whale watching and snorkeling with a turtle, they heard from other captains where those dolphins were on this particular morning so we headed up north to find them. We did eventually catch up to them and she prepped us for getting in the water. On her count, you had to hop in the water quickly to get near them. I did but apparently I am not the fastest swimmer when my fins and my mask and snorkel aren’t working too well. (Important to acknowledge here that Mike has been trying to get me my own fins and mask for years… I have always said we don’t need to spend the money on that for me. Why did he listen to me??)
Those dolphins are fast! (Interesting fact I learned from Dan today — they rest and frolic during the day to be ready to eat and swim at night. While they rest, they shut down half their brain, including the eyesight in one eye so they always swim in pairs to keep watch for predators.) I saw some swimming about 25 feet directly below me, in pairs of course, but could not for the life of me keep up with the ones swimming closer to the surface. I never even saw them except from a distance as their fins popped up above the water while I worked to clear my mask from all the water that had leaked in. I am not gonna lie, I was a little disappointed in myself for not being more prepared. Paige skipped out on this experience and she was probably smart to do so. If I ever get the chance to swim with dolphins again, I will definitely be more prepared.
The weather was absolutely gorgeous for our snorkel swim and the adults were all ready for some alcohol after that experience so we headed out to find lunch on a patio facing the ocean. That proved hard because several places were closed or didn’t have their fish dishes in yet.
We finally ended up at Lava Lava Beach Club – a place I have been wanting to go to for years. We were directly in the sun by the waitress station but we did not care! We had the ocean in front of us and mai tais in our hand while the littles played on the beach a bit. Mike even ran into a friend from work! The four adults decided we were definitely coming back.
After an afternoon of quiet lounging in our respective condos, the Strawns brought Big Lou by to take us to the Sunset Luau at the Marriott in Waikaloa. We had another beautiful sunset while we munched on delicious food and watched dancers perform beautiful hula and fire dances. The Strawn 6 all wore matching Hawaiian outfits and I was secretly jealous. My boys wouldn’t wear that for me for all the money in the world — trust me, I tried! We did get some good pictures before the kids crashed early. In fact, we were home and in bed by 8:30 — having celebrated New Year’s for the Central Time Zone. We are all ready for a day of relaxation tomorrow as we start the new year!
Happy 2019! Here’s to a new and exciting year!