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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Manuscript (04/29/10)

TITLE: The Aloha Diary
By Barbara Lynn Culler


Grandma was blind and had always desired to go to Hawaii so, when I had the opportunity to visit friends in Honolulu, I kept a daily journal. I wrote out a manuscript from the diary and with Hawaiian music playing in the background, made an audio tape of the transcript. The following are adaptations from the travelogue sent to Grandma.

July 4, 1985-THURSDAY. Because I was excited, and the environment uncomfortable, the five hour flight to Honolulu seemed more like ten hours. The haze of cigarette smoke did not know it was in the non-smoking section and hovered over my head, aggravating the cough I had from the tail end of a cold. Speaking of cold, I felt very chilly. You know, when it was 110 degrees yesterday, thoughts of wearing a sweater did not occur to me.

When I entered the airport terminal, my hosts for the week- my friend, Siree, husband Teiko and 18 year old daughter, Kiki, greeted me with a fragrant lei of pink carnations and tiny white pehake flowers.

Before heading “home”, we explored the rugged coastline and marveled at the power generated by the wind to create the blow holes - ocean water erupting like geysers through the openings in the rocks.

FRIDAY: Walked a quarter mile to Sandy Beach - a misnomer. Large jagged rocks jutted out of the water, deferring any desire to swim. I explored further up the coast, and ended up back at the blow hole from yesterday’s adventure. Feeling hot and thirsty, I was enticed by iced cold lemonade from a Hara Krishna sect group that had a booth of propaganda. That lemonade tasted so good!

SATURDAY: Siree and I went to Waimea Falls Park. There were exotic flowers and birds, but the best part was the waterfall. It flows from a creek and drops 45 feet to a freshwater pool. The water was somewhat dirty, but I didn’t care. Posing for photos below the splashing waterfall, I postured like a movie star from old time movies.

We lunched in a delightful restaurant called “The proud Peacock. “ True to its namesake, noisy cocks strutted about the grounds. We even peeked in on a private wedding party. Oh how lovely that would be to marry in this paradise!

We then went into the city of Waikiki and experienced a sensory overload of shopping, colorful lights, people, fragrances and music. The stunning sunset was golden against the blue gray ocean and multihued sailboats dotted the horizon.

SUNDAY: Went with Siree to her church and was over-dressed and uncomfortable in my skirt and nylons.
In the afternoon, we toured the Bishop Museum which contained interesting Hawaiian artifacts and no air circulation.

MONDAY: Went to the beach, and wrote out 24 postcards. The wind kept stealing the postcards and then tossed my postage stamps into the ocean. Well, it was quite a sight to see me amongst the rocks in the water, trying to capture those soggy squares! Each time a wave ushered them within my reach, I missed and back out they would go. Eventually I was able to salvage them.

TUESDAY: Kiki invited me to go snorkeling with her at Hanauma Bay-for a whole hour.

WEDNESDAY: Awakened at 2:00 AM by the smell of smoke. The crater behind the golf course in Siree’s backyard was on fire. Helicopters with dangling buckets attempted to douse the flames

Went to Sea Life Park and observed marine life shows. We ate sandwiches, which made us sick and left with bad headaches and nausea.

THURSDAY: Siree dropped me off in Waikiki and I had a grand time exploring the International Market Place, watching Hula shows, shopping at Hilo Hattie’s, and touring the Dole Pineapple Factory. Of course, I bought a lot of souvenirs!

FRIDAY: Siree and I went to the Polynesian Cultural Center, which is a tourist attraction run by the Mormon Church. Here, college students put on shows and acts that showcased various cultures of Hawaii. I flirted with one of the half-naked “natives”

SATURDAY: Spent the day by myself, snorkeling at Hanama Bay.

SUNDAY: My last night in Hawaii; we participated in a luau on the beach in Waikiki. It all was very ROTIC- that is romantic, without the man!

MONDAY: Teiko dropped me off at the Honolulu Airport and I waited two hours for my flight home. There’s no place like home, but this trip was a dream come true. I have 15 rolls of film to remember it by!

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This article has been read 663 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 05/07/10
Oh, I'd love to go to Hawaii some day!

I'm not sure how on-topic this is--it's really more of a transcript or travelogue than a manuscript. I'd love to read a whole story based on some of those incidents, though!
AnneRene' Capp05/07/10
Loved this and the great added humor of ROTIC and half naked men. You did a great job with your descriptions. What a treat for those who have not yet been there.
Joanna Stricker05/07/10
It sounds like great fun! Made me want to go visit.
Mildred Sheldon05/08/10
Thank you for this travelogue on Hawaii. I would love to visit Hawaii. I enjoyed this very much. Keep writing and God bless.
Theresa Santy 05/08/10
I liked this! I think I would enjoy having a cup of coffee next to you, while you tell one of these stories. You have a stealth-bomber sort of sense of humor, you know, the kind you don't see coming, then wham!

I liked how you made the equasion in paragraph two, excitement plus discomfort equals lengthening perception of time. I also liked 'Sandy Beach...a misnomer...' and, 'museum (had) interesting artifacts and no air circulation'.

It's the sort of grouping, or coupling of opposites, which I found incredibly amusing, and which I enjoyed so much.
Theresa Santy 05/08/10
Oh, and I loved the title!
Joan Campbell05/10/10
This was very fun to read. I liked the unusual format and loved the little dashes of humour - eg. flirting (is this autobiographical Barb?) You did well at capturing the excitement and joy of the trip.
Maria Egilsson05/10/10
Ms. barbie, I found you. Makes me want to visit Hawaii....sigh.... good job.
Kate Oliver Webb 05/10/10
Such a descriptive piece, it made me homesick (I lived in Hawaii for 18 years). I smelled the ocean, the foliage, yes the fragrant leis, and although you didn't mention it, the coconut scent of suntan lotion which always mingles with the beach scents. Ah yes, Aloha!
Beth LaBuff 05/11/10
Barb, thanks for allowing us to journey with you. I've never been to Hawaii, but could imagine all the splendor from your creative writing.
Jackie Wilson05/11/10
Sounds like an interesting trip. I liked the thought of Hawaiian music playing in the background as the journal is recorded.
Virgil Youngblood 05/11/10
What a fun trip. I hope someday to follow in your footsteps.
Verna Cole Mitchell 05/11/10
Hey Barb, have you thought of offering your services to travelogue magazines? Seriously? You have a gift for bringing a place to life in a humerous way. I enjoyed this.
Connie Dixon05/11/10
Spent 10 days on Oahu just a couple of months ago. I was with you all the way, and this trip was a LOT cheaper. Thanks for the memories. Great descriptions! Hope Grandma enjoyed it as much as I did.
Patricia Turner05/12/10
Thanks for the entertaining vignettes. I agree that each one could be expanded into a story of its own - a book I'm sure I'd enjoy reading.
Carol Slider 05/12/10
Okay, I'm ready for vacation now! You really made me want to visit these places... I agree that you could be a travel writer. I enjoyed this!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 06/11/10
This is such a delight to read. Your way with words makes me feel welcomed into your story- like you are personally inviting me to go on this journey with you.