So, yesterday was the big day. I went to bed at 1:30 AM Utah time (9:30 PM Hawaii time) and woke up two hours later to go to the airport to catch my early morning flight to San Francisco, the first stop in my flight path.
When I showed up to the airport, there was nobody at the counter to check people in. There were automated machines, but because my name is similar to some terrorist's, I am not able to check in via machine. I have to speak with an agent.
So at 4:04 AM, I thought my trip was off because no one was there to clear my name. They finally showed up at 4:20 AM, only to find out that in fact I don't look like this.
In San Francisco I had a two hour layover. I spent a fourth of that time roaming the airport looking for a McDonald's. I searched and searched, but was unable to find said fast food establishment. Upset, I settled for a subpar breakfast sandwich elsewhere, continued waiting, and finally, just when I thought it would never happen, boarded my plane to Hawaii!
The flight was uneventful. Upon landing, I decided the airport and surrounding area in Honolulu look a lot like LAX. The one major difference is that half of the airport is outdoors. The terminals are indoors, but the hallways were more like outdoor walkways. So, as soon as I got off the plane, I walked outside to go to the baggage claim.
After picking up my luggage, I proceeded to wander until I found the stop for rental car shuttles. Cody was originally going to meet me at the airport, but he missed his bus in Laie. He showed up after I got the car.
Good thing he didn't show up on time, though. If he had, I wouldn't have had my first Hawaiian Sammy's experience. As I waited for him to arrive, I circled the airport a few times. On my second go-round, as I drove past the American baggage claim/pick-up area, I looked out my window and saw a guy I thought looked a lot like a guy from my mission. I kept staring, and then realized that it was him.
I was so confused by what had happened that I didn't even think to stop or roll down my window. I just kept driving and staring. Luckily I had his number in my phone, so I called him once I realized what had happened. He's here with his wife on a family reunion. I can't go anywhere without things like that happening, and I love it.
Shortly after that uncanny experience, Cody showed up. Our first stop was Waikiki beach. We drove down there, parked the car (which took quite a while), and went into the water. It was beautiful.
After an hour or so there, we went back to the car and tried to find our way back to Laie. Traffic was pretty bad, and the roads were pretty confusing, but one thing we had going for us was the fact that we were on an island and couldn't possibly get that lost.
On the way back to Laie, we stopped at Pali Lookout, which was super windy. This picture overlooks the town of Kane'ohe, which is on the northeast shore of the island.
I don't know how fast the wind blows up through there, but if the picture of me doesn't demonstrate how fast it is, I hope the next picture does.
You can see their hair. If that's not enough, if she wasn't holding on to her shirt, it would have been long gone.
The views are breathtaking here, everything is super green, and all the people are very laid back.
When we got to Laie, Cody gave me a tour. We drove past the temple and around campus. Last night we ate at the cafeteria and even went to FHE.
I could really get used to the island life!