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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Day Three on Kaua'i

We woke up this morning to Kolton's phone ringing on vibrate. It was probably a good thing since it was a little after 9. Kolton and I both got to talk to our parents for a few minutes, then it was time to get down to business! We chomped down breakfast with some juice and milk and immediately got dressed to go down to the beach. I can't tell you how much I love walking down to the beach whenever you want. 

Our walk down to the beach
 I really LOVE it. We set up our beach chairs, put on our snorkling gear, and jumped into the surf. Today I seemed to take to the water even faster than yesterday. I am so thankful I had the opportunity to take swimming lessons over the past 8 weeks. I never thought I would be so comfortable in the water. We were out for quite awhile and tried to swim around the end of a reef to head into a neighboring bay, but Kolton's mask was not cooperating and the poor guy was taking on water right and left. We finally got it adjusted well enough but had already been out for about 45 minutes so we continued to head to shore.

Kolton wanted to sit in the sun on the shore for a little while,  so I did the red-head thing.  I curled up in the shade of his chair, covered myself with a sarong and took a little nap. Eventually Kolton had enough sun and we headed back into the water for a second round of snorkeling.  

This is great water for snorkeling.  We did not appreciate the smooth water till later in our vacation.

  Before we even had all of our gear on, Kolton over heard another snorkler mention he'd seen a sea turtle.  Kolton and I immediately headed over to that area.  Well, I immediately headed over.  I actually left Kolton behind since he was still fiddling with his gear.  I found the sea turtle hiding under the edge of the reef.  After a few moments, Kolton got over to me and we both got to watch.  The turtle seemed happy to just nap under the rocks, but then began to swim around and surface a few different times.  Kolton and I followed the turtle around for a few minutes.  He was so big!  I would say his body was slightly larger than Kolton's chest.  We tried not to chase him for too long and soon after followed a few schools of fish.  Once again,  I swam with little regard for anyone or anything other than following the little fishies.  Thankfully Kolton loves me dearly and was willing to follow me around.  We saw so many different types of fish.  Large, small, colorful, opaque, the Parrot Fish that has a beak style mouth and even a fish with a horn on it's nose!  I called it the unicorn fish.  I have no idea what it's real name was.  
After a bit of my independent adventure, Kolton and I were swimming together holding hands so that I would stay with him.  Boy am I glad that we were because the next thing we saw was a big ole eel.  Then we saw another just as big.  Scared the crap out of me.  Then of  course, in my efforts to swim away from them, I swam directly into a whole school of smaller eels.  I swear they were chasing me!  I could not get away from them!  My heart was racing, my lungs were burning, and the ocean was getting choppy.  And the Eels were chasing me!  All I could think of were the shreiking eels from Princess Bride.  I think that movie has ruined eels for me for life.  After that I couldn't ever get my snorkeling tube clear or my mask either.  Once again,  Kolton loves me dearly and suggested we headed for shore even though he was still having fun.  Unfortuantly, when you let me lead the way on a snorkeling adventure, I pay no attention to anything other than the pretty fishy i'm following and we were a few hundred yards out.  He had to stop and redirect me several times toward the shore.  It was definitely the best snorkeling trip of the four we've done so far.

We headed back to our bungalow at this point to clean up and get some lunch.  We munched on some yummy pizza and a delicious spinach salad while we took a little break.  It was at this point in the day we decided we really did need to schedule a Scuba diving trip while we were in Hawaii and went and talked to our concierge Lisa.  We took the opportunity while booking the trip to walk around the plantation and take a few pictures of the landscape and flora.  We then hopped back into our rental car and headed to Waimae Canyon to take in some new sceenery.   Waimea is on the west side of the island that takes in the most sunshine and the least rainfall.  We drove by the local farmers market by chance but stopped and bought some local tropical fruit for a few dollars. 
We bought Rambutan (image from Rambutan.com)
It's a very interesting fruit that is red spiny on the outside, and clear egg shaped gelatinous fruit on the inside. Kinda strange, but we enjoyed it.

 We then drove another half an hour up a very windy but beautiful canyon to get to the viewing point.  The wind was roaring, but the sun was shining and it was still very nice out.  We were fortunate enough to be at the top with another gentleman who was kind enough to take a few pictures of Kolton and I together in front of the gorgeous backdrop. 

Did I mention it was windy up there?
 There were a few other scenic pull out spots on the way down the canyon that we stopped at for a few more pictures.  

The landscape was incredible.

We stopped for dinner at a small local shrimp shack.  I have never had such great coconut shrimp!  They had an awesome creamy mango dipping sauce that was to die for.  Of course, the french fries they served it with just topped the meal off for me!  Love me some salt!
We decided to drive back to the plantation bungalows to watch the sunset.  This was not a bad call by any means.  I was amazed how quickly the sun sets over the ocean!
Taken at 6:27
Taken at 6:32
Taken at 6:37

To end our perfect day, we decided to go to a local desert shop and buy some Gelato.  We ordered a combo pint of White Chocolate Pistacio Gelato, and  Salted Caramel with Roasted Banana.  Sounds pretty awesome, right?  We've been hearing ads about this shop for a few nights on the TV now, and I think we had our expectations set a little too high.  While it is delicious, it's just ice cream/gelato.  There is only so much you can do with it, ya know?  It was definitely better than anything I've bought recently at the grocery store!  

I'm pretty sure today was the best day ever.  I love being in Hawaii with my husband!

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