Humuhumunukunukuapua’a

The titile is actually the name of the state fish of Hawaii.  It takes you a while to be able to say it without stuttering or forgetting a sylable.  🙂 

Sharon and I got back from our one week vacation to Maui on Sunday.  We had a great time there and did all kinds of interesting activities. 

We stayed at the Waldorff Astoria’s Grand Wailea which is a five star hotel on the western coast of Maui.  Wailea beach is famous for snorkeling, SCUBA, and for great sunsets.   The resort was very beautiful and had a lot of tropical plants, palm trees, and wildlife that made it spectacular.  We walked all over the large hotel grounds and went to their amazing swimming pools complete with a full water park.  They had at least five slides, and the worlds only water elevator.  The water elevator is this 25 foot tall cylinder that you get in, close the door, and it fills with water.  You sit on this giant innertube along with 20 other people and it slowly raises you to the top where you get off.  It was very cool!

Sharon and I went on a dive advanture where we did SNUBA.  SNUBA is just like SCUBA, but instead of wearing the packs on your back you have your airtank on a small inflatible raft.  You are connected to the airtank by a 20 foot long airhose.  That way you can dive down up to 20 feet and not have to worry about the weight of the packs.  It was great.  We got to take a ton of pictures underwater, and I even used my video camera in a waterproof housing to capture some images.  The only downside to the waterproof shell for my camcorder was that the air inside the case made it very hard to swim down with since it kept trying to raise me out of the water like a raft.  If I stood vertically, I could stay down some what, but if I tried to swim horizontally, I would rise right up to the top of the water.   I stopped using the camera after a while so that I could dive down and see the bottom of the reef.  Next time I will buy some weights for it so that I can stay down with ease.

We also went on a real submarine ride.  It goes down to up to 130 feet and stays down for 45 minutes.  It was very cool and is one of the only real subs in all of Hawaii.  The other sub companies don’t dive down, they just have glass bottoms on them and stay at the surface.  

We got to see ship wrecks, lots of eels, fish, and turtles during our submarine ride.  It was very relaxiing and I highly recommend it!

We took a tour of the Haleakala Crater which is a little over 10,000 feet above sea-level.   We got up at 3:00 AM to drive all the way up there just to see the world famous sunrise over the crater.  Conditions were perfect and the sunrise lit all the clouds with a firery light.  It was amazing!   It made it worth it freezing to death up there for hours in 50 mile an hour winds with 35 degree termperatures.   After the sunset, we went back down where it was warm again and thawed out.

We also took a helicopter ride over western Maui and Moloki.  Moloki has the tallest sea cliffs in the world and they are around 3,000 feet!  The North Shore of Moloki is one of the places used to film Jurassic Park.

We had a nice romantic sunset dinner on Thanksgiving and had all kinds of great food.  It was a great time had by all.

I definitely miss the weather.  It was snowing here yesterday.  Not very much, but still it is rare to see snow in the South.

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