Our second day on Oahu was a roller coaster. It was "PCC Day", and the Polynesian Cultural Center takes a whole day. Well, it starts at 11 or 12 and goes for the rest of the day and evening. We decided to get an early start and show Linda the east coast of the island.
The drive itself is just gorgeous - we didn't have to do much to dazzle my mother in law! We stopped briefly at one of our favorite beaches (an MWR [Morale Welfare Recreation - military perk] station) called Bellows. So we could show Linda where we used to take Gabriel when we lived there. I miss it so much....we went to Bellows on Christmas after opening presents. It was the first beach I ever took Gabe to, so it holds a special place in my heart. Love it.
One of the stops we just HAD to make was the Halona Blow Hole. If you don't know what a "blow hole" is, here is a good description from hawaiiweb.com:
A blowhole is a lava tube under the water and at the perfect height for waves to be driven into it. The water is compressed as the lava tube becomes smaller and smaller causing the pressure to increase forcing a stream of water to shoot up to thirty-feet into the air.
It was a windy day, but the view--unbeatable.
After spending a little time there, we were all a little hungry, so we went in search of something quick and easy to eat on the go. We found a gas station and my mom and Linda grabbed some nuts and fruit, I bought a muffin, and we were off! We decided to head up to this cute little shop that sells shells and (legally grown/farmed) coral and pretty island jewelry. My mother in law is quite the traveler and her Christmas tree is adorned with ornaments from all over the world every year so, of course, we had to get an ornament!
While we were driving (and not too long after I had finished my "breakfast"), I started to feel a little...icky. I remember saying something like "Ugh--that muffin is NOT agreeing with the kiddo..." Whatever. So we got to the shop and started looking at all of the neat things the have when it hit me. Like a brick to the face. Out of NOWHERE, I felt a cold sweat and I was getting really light-headed and dizzy. I had to sit down. It got exponentially worse as the minutes ticked by. It was time to hit the restroom and release some demons.
So yeah....I sorta threw up for like fifteen minutes. No biggie. We left the store in search of some pepto, with me lying in the back seat feeling miserable. My mom and Linda are totally awesome - they were so concerned and thought of nothing but making me feel better. SO. SWEET. We had to call someone to have them google what medicines one can take while pregnant to ease nausea. That person ended up being my brother in law, Darick. He was in the middle of teaching a Military Science class to a bunch of Army cadets, but he stopped what he was doing to do a little research for us. Ha! I can only imagine what everyone must of been thinking when they heard him saying "Okay, so babycenter.com says you can take X, Y, and Z...." I seriously have the best family ever. Anyway--fast forward a bit. I got some pepto in me and I was good to go by the time we got up to Laie. (Kinda bummed because I REALLY wanted to show Linda Chinaman's Hat....oh well...)
We stopped over at the LDS temple and strolled through the visitors center for a bit. It's so peaceful there and the grounds are just beautiful...
That's Linda there--the tiny lady in the pink...
After all the driving and stops, it was time for lunch. We went to this awesome little open air taco bar that I SO wish I had taken pictures of. Super yummy food.
Finally, it was off to the PCC! Honestly, there is so much to do there - we were on the go every second and I didn't get a ton of pictures of everything. Kind of a bummer... I DID, however, get a lot of pictures of the river/canoe pageant. (For those who have never been to the PCC - the whole idea is that you explore all six Polynesian cultures. You learn about their customs, music, food, dances, crafts, etc. Lots of fun.)
Aotearoa (New Zealand)
Again--there is SO MUCH to do at the PCC, but the river pageant is probably one of my favorite parts! After walking around and visiting the different cultures, we decided to take a canoe ride of our own. Again - no pictures of that. I don't know what's wrong with me! We shopped around a bit and then headed over to our luau for some awesome food and entertainment. Linda and I indulged in some yummy frozen drinks served in pineapples - yum!
After the luau is the night show, Ha: Breath Of Life. I wish I could describe this show for you. It is amazing. You're not allowed to take pictures, or I definitely would have. Every Polynesian culture is highlighted in this show. There are all different kinds of dances from each one - including one of my very favorite--the FIRE dances. Oh my goodness. So awesome. Below is just a small taste of Ha: Breath Of Life from youtube:
When the show was over, we were EXHAUSTED. We headed home and practically sleep-walked to our rooms.