Friday, April 27, 2012

Maui, Hawaii - Day 7 Exploring Lahaina

Another good day for sleeping in.  I rolled out of bed at 10:30am, though Theresa woke up feeling rested at 8:30 and went to read on the porch.  No big plans for today either. 
We decided to head out and try to find some more pictures to decorate our walls with once we got home.  Before we left for the day though, we saw Ruston had sent an email wanting to get us and Jacob on the phone together.  He had some big news he wanted to share with us and couldn't wait to tell us.  Unfortunately Jacob was training people in the office all day and couldn't get free until 5pm LA time.  We'll just have wait and speculate until then...  And yes, we did speculate.  He said it was good news, so maybe Ruston's going to be on the cover of some magazine, or maybe he'll be on some Disney CD.  Theresa even went so far as to think maybe he's the new voice for one of the characters.  Guess we'll just have to wait and see.  Off Theresa and I went down the coasts of Maui.  I'm envisioning a particular shot of a curved palm tree stretching out with  with blue skies and turquoise water in the background.  We stopped at a couple beach parks, but didn't find what we were looking for. 

We continued driving and made our way towards the Ritz Carlton hotel and golf course.  There we did find some interesting views, as well as a featured called the Dragon's Teeth.  The rocks there had formed into jagged triangular pieces and they really did look like teeth.  There are just some beautiful views out here.  Not all of them can possibly translate through a camera lens, but just to be here and experience the sights is amazing.  

Grr.  I'm a dragon.

Continuing around the rocky outcropping, we saw a turtle just hanging out on the surface.  The water here was amazingly clear and when the wind wasn't blowing, we could see straight to the bottom.  

Getting a 360 view of the area.

We even saw a guy jumping off the cliffs into the water.  I never did get to try this while we were here.

After that, we stopped at a couple more beach parks, but didn't see anything we wanted to shoot.  Earlier we tried to stop at Ha.... beach, but the parking there was terrible.  We tried again on the way back and had much better luck.  The beach itself was pretty packed with people, but off to the left there were some sweet looking tidepools.

Continuing further, we even saw some lone palm trees stretching out over the water.  Not exactly like I pictured in my head, but still something.

Walking a little more, there was a beautiful bay that had at least 3 sea turtles floating around in it plus some snorkelers.  Another palm tree off by itself that I tried to capture.  This one even had a little lizard on it that could stretch out the skin on its neck into some firery red colors.  At about this point, Theresa and I were wishing we put on sunscreen.  Our faces were starting to get toasty.

Theresa made some comment like "A Jamba Juice would be really good right now."  Looked it up on the phone and sure enough, there's a Jamba Juice in Lahaina, only 10 minutes away.  On the way over we get a phone call from Ruston and Jacob waiting to tell us this news.  Turns out, the day before was Administrative Assistant appreciation day.  The Disney company puts on a big party for everyone and gives out door prizes and has a raffle.  Normally Ruston says he never wins anything at these things, but this year he lucked out.  Turns out he won the Grand Prize for the night.  A stay in the Disney Dreams Suite inside Disneyland Park.  You know the one they were giving away each night during the Year of a Million Dreams.  The one Theresa and I said we could never possibly win, but every time we visited the park 6 years ago, we were hoping and hoping to win.  The one you can't even buy a night stay if you wanted to.  Where you get your own balcony to watch Fantasmic from.  Where you get to sleep inside the park overnight!  Yeah, that Dream Suite.  We were super excited for Ruston to have won it, and even more excited when he invited us to join him as his guests.  Awesome right?  As soon as we got off the phone with both of them, we screamed and cheered even more in the car.

Here's our faces after we got to Jamba Juice and had a safe place to take a photo.

We grabbed our Jamba Juices and drove to the next state park where there was another tree that I've really been trying to get a photo of.  We hung out there for a while, finished our drinks then headed back to the hotel. 

 There were even some wild chickens and baby chicks wandering around the park.

We read books for the next few hours before it was time for dinner.  A quick stop at Long's Drugs first to grab some aloe for our sunburned faces and necks, then off to dinner.  This was a local takeout spot that got good reviews on Yelp.  Theresa got a korean bbq chicken, which she thought was great, and I got a panko coated fried chicken, while I also thought was excellent.  Finally some tasty local food.  We took it all back to the hotel room and started planning out the next day.  We're going to Haleakala crater.  The guidebooks say that sunrise there is amazing.  It's also a 3 hour drive from our hotel, plus we're going to be joining hundreds of other people.  That meant an early 2:45am wake-up to get on the road and get to the summit before sunrise.  Luckily, Theresa did some more research and found a few people who actually recommended sunset over sunrise.  That would leave us with a normal morning, plus they say the viewing of the stars on top of the crater is outstanding.  We're going to do that instead.  Time for bed.

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