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12/8 2009

A day at the beach

Our local beach

Our local beach

It goes in the face of the ‘starving athlete’ image to disclose that Rachel and I have taken the kids to Oahu – especially to the stranger who was kind enough to offer to build me a bike.  But there is logic and savings in taking this trip now.

Rachel somehow managed to ‘swap’ our suite this past summer with a family she found on Craig’s List (different Craig).  The family is from Oahu and wanted to swap with someone in Victoria.  Their kids went to Camp Thunderbird last summer.  Great family!  They came and had a fun adventure in Victoria.

It took us 5 months, but now we are finally on our half of the swap!  We were going to go in November but we didn’t get Bowen’s birth certificate in time, so we couldn’t get his passport either.  All that said, we are in Hawai’i now!  The last time I was here was 10 years and 1 month ago with Morgan Crooks.  We were on our way back from an Olympic test event in Sydney. They ran a mini regatta exactly a year out from the Olympics.

As for this trip, Bowen flew for free (and did a great job on the plane), the accommodation is free and we have a kitchen to prepare all our meals.  And besides, this is the vacation to end all vacations – at least for 2 1/2 years.  Once I start rowing in March there are no vacations until after London 2012.

Wave jumping in Kailua

Wave jumping in Kailua

We arrived two days ago.  The family we swapped with lives in Kailua on the east shore of Oahu.  The first thing we did was hit the beach!  One of the family’s daughters, 9 year old Nicole, walked down with us as our guide.  Mira and I waved jumped until her lips turned blue – Rachel just laughed as we got pummeled by wave after wave.  It was so much fun; one of those moments that will live in all our memories.  It was so special that Mira and I rolled out of bed yesterday morning and headed straight back to the same beach and Rachel and Mira are there now!

Mira in the control room of the USS Bowfin

Mira in the control room of the USS Bowfin

Yesterday we also headed to Pearl Harbour – December 7th being the 68th anniversary of the Japanese bombing (1941).  Mira and I went aboard the USS (submarine) Bowfin at the memorial site.  It was a beautiful monument, but Mira was a bit insecure.  We hurried through the inside of the sub and spent lots of time on the deck.  Last night I went to the local Blockbuster looking for the Hollywood movie Pearl Harbour.  Rachel and I thought we could watch it after the kids were asleep.  I should have guessed that there would be some cultural aversion to the Ben Affleck Hollywood love-story version of that fateful day when so many people lost their lives.  I thought about the relative proximity of Pearl Harbour to where we are staying – and it would be as if the attack happened in Sydney (BC) if you live in Victoria (BC).   Needless to say: they don’t carry the movie – good for them.

We have another 4 days here in paradise.

Dave

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