Day 18A - Long Flight to Hawaii - Longer Layover
Friday December 6
Today we woke up early, about an hour before our redundant 7:30 AM alarms and backup wake up call. We had just enough time to shower, pack and were able to walk right out front and directly into the shuttle bus for the airport.
Even though we had diligently planned on arriving in plenty of time for our international flight, the plane was delayed in order to allow some other passangers from Melborne and another city to connect with the flight. You don't have that happen on flights in the states, but guess when you have people flying such great distances they make concessions.
The flight itself was grueling. About 10 hours and miserably cramped into just the 2 seats we had paid for. It's so nice when you can spread out a bit. We did however see some beautiful sunsets from 37,000 feet. We landed, did customs and decided to save a couple of bucks by taking a shuttle bus.
Our Last Aussie contact was a family of 4 that was just starting the 4 month tour of the states, we met them on a shuttle bus from the airport. I encouraged, more like demanded, that the teenage girl keep a journal on their trip. I told her, "You'll forget more than you remember, write SOMETHING down every day, even if it is just a list of what you did. Oh, and make a point to talk to someone new everyday." We then recounted our private cruise with Graham on Hamilton Island. After hearing the story the mother chirped in with a hearty "Goodonya", which is an Australian phrase for "Good On You" or "Good going", "Right On", or maybe even "Jolly Good".
NO light and NO patience, we are tired and it's at the end of the day, photography suffers.
Except for meeting interesting people we learned that we don't want to do the airport shuttle busses any more, this ride would add an hour to our trip.
After getting to our room and plugging in all the batteries to charge we decided we must eat. Qantas food sucks. At about 2:00 AM we left the hotel by foot. We actually passed a Denny's but it was CLOSED, I thought they were always open. Tired and not willing to explore anymore we ended up asking a prostitute where to find some food, she sent us to Jack in the Box.
At Jack in the Box we ran into a young couple that had been sitting across the aisle from us on the shuttle bus but we had not spoken to them. As we walked in immediately Antonio said, "Hey, you needed some late night dining too huh?" Lelani was born in 1976 and he was about the same age and yet they had tons of stories about where they had been together. I'm not sure what they do for a living but they referred to their "clients" and they bought 4 Jumbo Jacks and a huge bag of fries to take back to their hotel room. You take a guess.
What amazed me about meeting them was the way it came about. We had some truely meaningless small talk in line waiting for our food. Once our order was up I said, "Hey, when you get your food why don't you join us?" Although they said that they had planned on just going back to their room they ended up coming over and sharing a table with us. It was fun and allowed us to continue on our unplanned theme of meeting new people everyday.
Back to the hotel for a shower and a few hours of sleep.