I can't remember if I mentioned that I left my camera in Norfolk about, oh, two months ago. So I went to Kona armed only with my cell phone. And then I kept forgetting to take photos. Because I am super awesome like that. Lucky for me, my future mother-in-law is lovingly known as the paparazzi, so before I left, I borrowed her camera and uploaded a bunch of HER photos. There are about a million, so I'm going to try to keep my commentary to a minimum. Enjoy!
Arriving at the airport, being greeted by the Ironman athlete herself! She finished in 12 hours, 26 minutes. Y'all, she was involved in rigorous athletic pursuits for TWELVE hours. Half a day! I am continually in awe of her. She's amazing. Me on the other hand, well, I'm wearing leggings as pants. And we all know that leggings are not pants, especially when worn with normal-length shirts. But I did it anyway b/c I was on a plane for a million hours & it was comfy. I was rewarded with a hole in the inside thigh of my leggings. Nice.
At my adventurous sushi dinner, discovering that the sushi chef liked to use wasabi like glue in his nigiri. My nasal passages have never been clearer.
Breakfast was probably my favorite meal every day...so much delicious fruit, French-pressed Kona coffee, mimosas, what is NOT to love about that?
These little dudes ALSO loved breakfast...if you left your plate unattended, they would swoop in and feast on your leavings.
On top of Mauna Kea, with the Mister's mom, his sister and his sister's friend from college. Those huge domes behind us are telescopes!
Getting a personal astronomy lesson from the Mister's sister, who just happens to be an astronomer! Also, may I just say, it was FREEZING up here and I was, obviously, super prepared for that.
The Mister's aunt and grandma left Kona after a few days to head to Maui. It was great to spend some time with them though, and get a bit more acquainted with my in-laws-to-be. Also, please note the Mister's sister's bad-ass Ironman bib number sunburn tattoo. Because she is hardcore.
On a boat, on our way to go swim with manta rays. This is before I realized that swimming with manta rays involved snorkeling in the ocean at night. I also failed to inform anyone that I'd never actually been snorkeling. Or really ever swam in the ocean.
Wetsuits are SUPER sexy. Also, swimming with the manta rays was incredible. I really had no idea what to expect (clearly). Once I stopped hyperventilating through the snorkel, I really enjoyed being in the ocean. And then once the rays showed up, well, it was seriously one of the coolest things I've ever experienced. The Mister's sister bought a video of us from a videographer who accompanies the dives and her friend had a waterproof camera so he also took some videos. Once I get my hands on either of those videos, I'll share with y'all. Because words can't really get across the bizarre feeling of being mere inches from these massive, graceful sea creatures.
This photo is mine. I snapped it during my one & only run on my vacation. I only intended to go for a thirty minute run, hopefully along the water. Well, that didn't exactly work out for me. And then I somehow ended up on private property and then got lost and then ended up here, which was some kind of prehistoric park or something. I have no idea. All I know is that the path was full of lots of little hills, which was intense, and the scenery was awesome. I ended up running a little more than five miles and it took me about an hour because I also got lost on my way back to the hotel. I get lost a lot.
My face in this photo made me laugh so hard. Also, let me just say, I got teased a bit for putting on make-up before breakfast. I say, go ahead and call me Girlie McSissypants, but I was prepared for the paparazzi. This was my last breakfast in paradise and I was a bit spoiled, with starfruit, papaya, lychee and dragonfruit, not to mention the usual blueberries & strawberries. I'd eat so much more fruit for breakfast if it were already prepared for me when I woke up. I really would.
And then we dropped the Mister's sister off at the airport and that was pretty much the end of my Kona vacation.
I cannot say thank you enough to my future mother-in-law. The Mister's mom is an incredibly generous lady and I had so much fun hanging out with her and the rest of the family. The only thing that could have made this vacation any better (aside from the obvious: more time!) would have been for the Mister to have been able to come. But this just means I'll have to drag him back there sometime. Because I'm sure I'm really going to have to drag him.