It doesn't take much to make me happy, but then it doesn't take much to annoy me either.

Hawaii 2017

So we finally made it to Hawaii. Spent 5 days there at the Westin Maui Resort and Spa located just a little south of Kaanapali Beach.

The resort was beautiful, as was the beach itself. The weather could have been a little less... smothering? The heat and humidity were at times unrelenting. Walking back along the beach trail to the hotel after a luau, it was 10 o'clock in the evening and felt like noon on a hot day. No breeze and the heat just felt heavy... no other way to describe it.

For those who prefer video, Quynh put together a movie of the trip - very nice. Otherwise scroll down for the photo collection.



This was the day we arrived, posing for a photo in the front lobby of the Westin. It was a open air lobby, with stone tile floors and columns, which made for a nice appearance but the waterfall in the background created a steady noise that bounced off all that stonework, creating a loud and constant background noise.



Getting settled into a nice hotel room after the trip from the airport. This is becoming one of my favorite photos of Sunshine... kind of like a movie star. In fact, I should try changing this to black and white.


Balcony View 

The view from our balcony on the 6th floor overlooking the resort gardens and swimming pools. And this is the same view later in the evening, close to sunset. 



We walked along the beach early the first morning and I took a panoramic photo of the coastline. Very beautiful, and the water was warm and crystal clear.



Group photo on the beach. Amy, Quynh, Bac Loan with Mason, and Sunshine. The catamaran floating in background would occasionally come all the way up to the beach with a lowered ladder, where people could board for a trip of snorkeling and sailing. We didn't do that though...



Another group photo at the beach, this one including Khoi and Amanda. Everyone was helping Mason build a sand castle.



Amanda, with Mason waving from inside his sand castle.


Mama's Fish House

Posing for a photo outside of Mama's Fish House restaurant. The food was as good or better than the beautiful setting. From this point forward in our trip, every meal was compared to Mama's Fish House with the unanimous agreement that nothing came close - Mama's was the best.



Also at Mama's Fish House. I'm not big on selfies, but this one came out okay.


Fruit Stand 

On the way back to the hotel we stopped at a fruit stand. All sorts of local fruit and nuts, including mangos, bananas, guavas, and of course coconuts. We bought sliced up pineapple as well as a young coconut... unfortunately only the pineapple tasted good, but apparently that was offset by the $2 charge to slice it up. "Not worth it" she said.



The next day we went for a hike to one of the inland waterfalls. As you can see, everything was damp or dripping wet. It was an enjoyable hike though, as long as you were careful not to slip on anything.



Along the hike, Amanda found a large leaf to use as a small umbrella to shield against both the dripping forest and the blazing hot sun.



Mason with a leaf umbrella. Half the group stopped at this point because the trail to the waterfall led across this stream. Notice the sign warning of flash floods. When the group returned from visiting the water fall, the small stream we had crossed was now a rushing current about 18" deep. Park rangers were on hand to offer help crossing if needed, but we all made it back safely with the exception of one of Daniel's sandals.



Attending a luau, Hawaiian food and entertainment. This turned into a very hot evening, which sort of made it difficult to enjoy the festivities.

And this is video of Sunshine learning the hula dance later in the evening at the luau. The announcer is actually instructing a bunch of guests that volunteered to come up on the stage, but she didn't see any reason why she couldn't follow along while sitting in her seat.



Posing with one of the dancers after the show.



Also posing with one of the dancers after the show.



Another selfie, this taken under the umbrella at the beach. We really enjoyed relaxing on the beach and spent the better part of the day here. I would wait until the heat became too much and then go for a swim in the ocean to cool down. Rinse and repeat to enjoy a full day at the beach.



Back home with my genuine souvenir from Hawaii - sunburn from spending the whole day at the beach. Even though we were always under the shade of an umbrella, the reflected sunlight left its mark on me - not her, though. She had a little fake burn that dissipated soon afterward. Oh, and this is the real pic - no Photoshop.



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