I do not normally like posting huge blog posts, but it seemed easier to do it this way than lots of small ones, especially as I could not get to an Internet cafe every day........
This is the story of our visit to Washington DC, Hawaii and New York, the primary purpose of which was to attend our son's wedding. I expect this narrative will bore you stupid, but I have put it here to help me remember in the years to come :-) As you can see, we did pay a lot of attention to the inner man, so we are on lentils and celery for the next month or two!
Good Virgin flight from London to Washington DC. Met up with number one son and future daughter in law at Dulles IAD. Checked in to hotel then went out for an very good Italian
Go round some of the Washington Sights. Library of Congress very interesting. Very hot and my manky knee starts playing up. Then meet up with the daughter in law's parents. They are very nice people. We all went for a very good Chinese.
Wife, daughter and daughter in law to be do lots of shopping in the local malls. Afterwards, we meet with daughter in laws parents again and all go for a huge ribs dinner then round to their place for cheese and biccies and some moonshine.
Day of rest, relaxation and packing after a breakfast in a Krispy Kreme Donut store. In the evening, daughter in law is busy packing the wedding dress and lots of other stuff so the family go out for a steak in the local Mortons Steak House.
Trip to Honolulu via Newark on two Continental flights. Planes late and we are generally unimpressed with Continental. Arrive at hotel just in time to have a buffet meal before the restaurant closed at 9-30. (Why do so many places close so early in Hawaii?).
Meet up with the rest of daughter in law's family, her sister, brother in law, niece and nephew then Visit to the Polynesian Cultural Centre on O'Ahu. A great day followed by a very nice buffet meal and then a show with lots of lovely Polynesian girls shaking their booty before staggering back to the coach to get back to the hotel.
A day trip all the way around O'Ahu. Very interesting things to see and do. Ironically, stop at the Polynesian Cultural Centre for the lunch break. After the trip, wifey, daughter, son and myself go out for a Mexican.
Wedding day. We all get ponced up and troop over to the next hotel where the wedding is to be held. The daughter in law's mother is Hawaiian and and her cousin, orginally from Hawaii and now from San Diego, is a church minister and conducts the wedding. The bride looks lovely, the sun is hot and the background is the Pacific Ocean. All very good and we have lots of photos taken.
This is followed by a wedding breakfast in the hotel restaurant. After this we all go back to our hotels for a bit then meet up where the bride and groom are staying. There, we pick up a stretch limo to travel to the evening cruise ship, where we get to sail around the Hawaiian coast while eating a splendid meal. Then all back to beddy-byes.
The bride and groom jet off to nearby Maui for their honeymoon, while the rest of the family have a rest day. Wife, daughter and self go to the local Hard Rock Cafe. We have a reasonable meal and the wife buys the tee shirt and all the usual gubbery that she buys in the HRC shop wherever we are.
Have an air trip to the Big island, as Hawaii itself is known. Go on a coach trip around the island and this includes a trip to Moana Loa, an (sort of) dormant volcano. Very interesting trip. Getting back to O'Ahu is a bit of a disaster. There is a regular air service between Kona airport on Hawaii and Honolulu, but because just one plane is cancelled because of tehnical difficulties, the whole schedule is completely screwed and we get back to O'Ahu too late for dinner.
A rest day. Spend some time on Waikiki beach. Have a pizza for dinner.
Visit to Pearl Harbour. Trip to see the USS Arizona Memorial. Very moving. We then go around the USS Missouri, a very impressive old ship. Then back to Honolulu for a trip to a shopping mall followed by a meal in Jackie Chan's restaurant "Jackies Kitchen". This was really good indeed.
Visit the Honolulu Aquarium in the morning. Then back to the airport for yet another pretty awful flight with Continental. Still, the video and cabin lighting failed so we all got a good load of sleep and arrived in New York without too much jet lag.
Do the Empire State Building and The Statue of Liberty. Very impressive. In the afternoon, the bride and groom fly in for a couple of days after their honeymoon. We all go to see the lights of Times Square (which is not square but the shape of a bow tie!) and end up having burgers at Planet Hollywood.
Wife and daughter do some serious shopping and I go to The New York Museum of Natural History with the bride and groom. Actually, it is much more than a natural history museum and has many geological and astronomical exhibits and a planetarium. We all go out for our final nosh of the tour, an Italian.
Go on a round the city drop-in, drop-off bus tour around downtown New York. very interesting. Then end up having a couple of beers in Mickey Mantle's Bar, and return to the hotel to pick up the luggage and wait for the airport shuttle. This arrives early so we do not get as much time as we would have liked to say goodbye, but we go to the airport, leaving the bride and groom to have one more day in the Big Apple, before they go back to Virginia. Arrive back in the (Dis)UK a bit knackered but having had a great time.
Lots of washing and uploading of photos to Kodak Gallery!!
Footnote to El Gordo: Another talented individual decided not to live in the God-forsaken country that you and Bliar have created!!