Sunday, September 17, 2006

At the Sandbar

A few years back Janet's Mom went to visit our nephew Pat (who is now a Marine Master Seargeant) at the Hawaii Marine Corps base in Oahu. After hearing her tales about the amazing natural beauty, we decided to make a point of visiting the sandbar during our Hawaii trip last month. We visited all-over Oahu and Kauai, and we were really disappointed with the super-touristy areas, especially the Pearl Harbor Memorial.

Morons at the Pearl Harbor Memorial

My Dad was in the battle against the Japanese on December 7th 1941, and I have no tolerance for tourists who are disrespectful, especially Japanese tourists!

I don't get it.

It would be like Americans visiting the site of the Mai Lai massacre.

The Pearl Harbor Memorial is design to bring tears to your eyes and help people remember "the day that will live in infamy". I saw people crying and then looking-up with contempt at the hoards of happy Japanese tourist.

I'll bet they were thinking "YOU! It's YOU who did this!". They don't keep statistics on the number of rude Japanese tourists who have been brutalized by Vets at the Pearl Harbor Memorial, but I'll bet it's a frequent occurrence.

Anyway, let's move-on to the highlight of our visit, the Sandbar.

The Sandbar at Kaneohe Bay

We were hosted by Byron Bush, his wife Lisa, and their adorable kids, son Hague and daughter Sagel, nice folks who know the real meaning of hospitality. Byron is president of the Hawaii Oracle Users Group, and he is a man with diverse interests, hosting an amazing web site devoted to Red Wing pottery.

Janet and I were both tired after our afternoon of lectures for a local computer group, and we needed a break:

"The Sandbar" ia a natural shallow at the mouth of Kaneohe Bay, nearly a mile away from the inner harbor.

Since Lisa is an Army physician, we got access to the Marine base and Byron showed us all of the amazing splendor. Natural beauty is almost unheard-of on most Marine bases! Here is a shot of me and Lisa:

I grew-up as an Army brat, and I always remembered how friendly the GI's are. It was refreshing to see that nothing has changed, and Byron and family welcomed us with open arms:

One of the great benefits of serving in the armed forces is the cheap recreation, and Byron and Lisa rented a cool pontoon boat for a tour of the harbor.

From the boat in Kaneohe bay we also got a great view of Coconut Island, the filming location for the 1960’s hit comedy “Gilligan’s Island” The Sandbar is in the upper-left of this photo.

Janet decided to try-out the snorkeling.

Me, I just walked about in the shallows and take-in the amazing scenery.

The water was crawling with sea critters and you didn't really need a snorkel to see them.

A Picnic in the Ocean!

The water gets shallow right at the entrance to Kaneohe bay, and "The Sandbar" is shallow enough for picnic's in the sea! People set-up tents, deck chairs and charcoal grills, right-out in the open ocean:

Byron's Mom came along for a walk in the warm shallow water:

Hangue and Sagel were great fun to watch. Ah, to be young again!

Hague and Sagel are already accomplished swimmers and I'm sure that it won't be long before they are tandem-surfing, just like the kids at Wakiki beach:

The scenery at the sandbar is amazing because it is at an area where the mountains meet the shore.

We cannot wait to come-back and we will always remember our wonderful day at the Sandbar and the hospitality of Lisa and Byron Bush.