Surf’s Up!

Yesterday, Penny took us in her car up to the north shore of Oahu, famous for its surfing waves. We were not disappointed. The waves were at record-breaking heights of up to 30 feet. It’s hard to describe what it looks like to sit on the beach and watch these humongous walls of water come in with what appear to be tiny figures on surfboards riding them. Especially with binoculars, you could see colorful figures bobbing on their boards, waiting for the perfect wave to come in. The shore was filled with observers, several with cameras with the largest lenses I’ve ever seen. The crowd would murmur as a surfer would catch his wave (all were male), riding the top or down the face, sometimes in a pipe, until he landed in a sea of white foam. There would be a lull and then a series of waves, with riders coming into shore and heading back out. I took a few pictures (which I’ll post at the end) but without the super huge lenses you might have to look carefully.

One rider came in with a board broken in half. While we were watching, there was a huge wave that we guessed was at least 30 feet tall. All of a sudden it reached the shore and the water came up to where everyone was sitting. We all grabbed our things and started running for the cliff above as the water swirled and stole everything from random towels to one poor man’s wallet. I had thoughts of tsunami waves as we ran. The power of water is amazing.

Penny’s tour continued to a seaside lunch place where we shared pupus (a variety of appetizers) by the sea. We spent some time looking through a variety of shops and then drove to the Dole pineapple plantation. I couldn’t believe the amount of things that can be made with pineapple flavors from bubble gum to cookies. Check out the pictures for the most interesting macadamia nut flavor I’ve ever seen.

This morning, Penny, Sue and I walked from Penny’s house to Diamond Head. We hiked up to the top along with tourists from all over the world. The climb started gradually but ended with a series of steps to the top and a couple of tunnels through the volcanic mountain. We explored the bunkers where spotters have watched for forest fires and foreign planes. Pearl Harbor is visible from here as are the skyscrapers of Honolulu, the beach at Waikiki, and the mountains behind the sea.

We earned the dip in Penny’s pool to cool down afterward. Sitting outside with some fresh fruit, grilled dogs, veggies and good company, life is very, very good.

(If I’m lucky, I have uploaded all the photos I have taken in Hawaii in my Picasa web album. They aren’t labeled yet, but click on the photo link to check them out. Thanks, Penny, for letting me use your laptop.)











Leave a comment


  1. pam perkins

     /  February 1, 2012

    Sounds like another great day a la Penny. Glad she served you gourmet food. I have the same pineapple picture as yours except mine was taken in Cuba. I’m sending Penny my Shutterfly Cuba album later today so you can see our pictures.

  2. Mary Kay

     /  February 1, 2012

    I am living large through your posts, Ellen. Keep them coming!

  3. Sandra Timko

     /  February 1, 2012

    I heard about the 30ft waves on news this am. Was hoping you would see them.

  4. Candice Stein

     /  February 1, 2012

    The four of you are having too much fun! Great photo. Wish I were there.

  5. Phyllis Biegun

     /  February 1, 2012

    We should all be there! Amazing, fun and wonderful!

  6. Peggy Kehew

     /  February 1, 2012

    Really enjoying the Blog Ellyn – the sun is a welcome sight even in photos!

  7. Mary Blake

     /  February 1, 2012

    all of you look wonderfully happy and unchanged from 2008. thanks for the blogs, they make my day!

  8. Carolyn Froeberg

     /  February 3, 2012

    Have a grand time on your upcoming travels! Came across this blog about an18 year old girl traveling the world on her bike, thought you might enjoy her view of the world from the seat of a bike.


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