Leah got sick the evening before the trip so I got to go on the sailing, snorkeling and whale watching tour. Got up early packed a bag and headed out. Had McDonald’s on the way and headed through Honolulu to Waikiki. The boat was a 53′ gold coast built catamaran,which was fitted out for tourist use with an open air bridge deck complete with bar, two heads in the pontoons and no staterooms. The boat motored out of the marina and went a out thirty minutes to a known turtle hangout. The crew moored to a submerged mooring ball and we got ready to get in the water.
I went down the stairs into the water to wait for James. He came down a little nervous and jumped into the water with his snorkel gear and flippers on. He put his head in and came up sputtering and looking very unhappy about being in the water. A crew member was in the water and had a floatie which James grabbed. He really wanted to quit but I knew that if we took things slowly he would be able to do it. I encouraged him to try putting his head in with only the mask on, which was no problem for him being a goggle veteran. Next he breathed through the snorkel above the water. By this time he had calmed down and then he tried putting his head in the water with the snorkel and decided that wasn’t so bad… all of a sudden he saw a fish and took off swimming after it. SWEET!
The crew and I looked at each other somewhat flabbergasted that he had gone from scared to swimming so quickly. I hurried off to stay with James who had already swam 20 feet towards the rest of the group. We swam together for a hundred meters and then chilled watching fish and sea turtles with our group. James was a natural and was enjoying himself until he had to pee. He was unable to do it in the water, even though I told to try. We headed back to the boat before morale crashed. On the way back to the boat we caught up with Doug and saw a sea turtle on the surface ten feet away breathing. Cool.
Got on the boat went to the washroom and had lunch. The boat sailed around the harbor and we saw a pod of dolphins which played in the bow wave of the boat. They slapped their tails and jumped which was really cool.
Headed back to the marina and we’re soon on dry land.
James said the trip was awesome and with some extra prodding for more specifics his favorites were, the washrooms on the boat and dolphins; in that order.
We headed back to pipeline the long way around the island stopping at a few viewpoints, a macadamia farm and the entrance to an incredible hike called “stairway to heaven.” The “entrance” is a barb wired fence that is occasionally guarded that you must circumvent to climb the 2hr, 4000 stair climb to the top of ridge were breathtaking views await.