Saturday, November 26, 2011

Day 8: Pearl Harbor

Dad had signed us up to an all-day Pearl Harbor tour for Friday.  So what does that mean?  Getting up at 5 in the morning.  Yuck.

Thank goodness for the lobby of the hotel having a Starbucks.  A nice, warm coffee so bright and early was just what I needed.

We walked over to where the tour guide/bus was going to pick us up.  Our guide's name was Dennis.  It was fabulous.  He was actually a really good tour guide; he seemed super interested in the information he was spitting out at us.  Imagine having to do that every day of the year.  I couldn't handle it.

I actually learned a lot from him, though, and from everything throughout the day.  It's one of those things you just have to go to when you visit Hawaii.

We were able to tour through lots of things that day: a huge submarine called the USS Bowfin, the USS Arizona memorial, the USS Missouri, the aviation museum.  I was a lot more interested in everything than I originally thought I would be.  It was a good time.

USS Bowfin submarine

USS Arizona Memoria

USS Missouri

It ended up that it was Memorial Day when we went (the date was actually 11/11/11, so I thought that was kinda cool).  Since it was Memorial Day, there were about 5 men who were survivors of the Pearl Harbor attack (in 1941, mind you) and were there signing autographs and telling people about their lives.  They each had made up little one-page bios about themselves, which I thought was really sweet.  Small world - one of the survivors that was there was actually a graduate of Moline High School, the neighbor and rival school of Geneseo!!  It's sometimes actually crazy how things like that happen.

We finished the tour at Pearl Harbor at about 3:30 or so, and then Dennis took us around Honolulu for the remainder of the tour.  I'm not sure where we went or what was said because I fell asleep =/ But I've seen most of Honolulu anyway, so I probably didn't miss out on much.

After the tour, we all went back to the hotel and hung out until the weekly fireworks at seven that Sister had missed because her flight came in the day after.  So she saw that and liked it.  Then we all went to Benihanas, a Japanese steakhouse where the chef cooks the food right in front of you and makes it entertaining.  Expensive as shit, but Sister and I split a dish and so did Mom and Dad.  The food was delicious.

Mom, Dad, and Brother went back up to the hotel for the night while Sister and I went to the bar to listen to some music and have some drinks.  Rumor had it that Obama was supposed to be flying in later that night and we wanted to see what kind of a commotion that would bring about.  We proceeded to walk around the hotel past all the security and guard dogs and a portable metal detector (why? I don't know).  We found a large group of guests that had corralled in a particular area, so Sister and I went to check it out to see if Obama had arrived.  Nothing was happening and I was all sorts of confused so I asked a couple hotel employees why everyone was standing around.  His response: "I have no idea, Obama's already up in his room for the night".  So we called it quits and left all the other guests there waiting for absolutely nothing.

And bedtime it was.


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