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Tuesday, September 14, 2021

livin' that first class life

a couple of days after the bean came home, we packed up again and headed off to the airport - and this time, we were super excited because we were off to hawaii, our forever happy place.

we'd completed all of the online forms and uploaded our vaccination cards and figured we were good to go...but after we got ourselves checked in and dropped off our bags we found out there was one more hurdle.  turns out that they needed to see your physical vaccination card and issue you a wristband that would allow you to go through the airport once in honolulu.  we hadn't known about this last step, and with the line snaking all the way across the terminal with just one customer service rep behind the desk, we resigned ourselves to the possibility of having to stand in a super long line once we landed.  blah.  still, we were stoked to be on our way.

the trip i'd booked was one of those package deals that bundled hotel and air together for a discount, but the hub had somehow managed to finagle using points to upgrade our flights to first class.  and so when we boarded the plane and turned the corner, we were beyond elated to find that the plane was equipped with pods in first class.  woohoo!!

there were fluffy pillows and saks-branded blankets at each seat:

i had the bean across the aisle from me, with the hub in the pod just next door.

to my right there was a little table and lamp, with a storage cubby thing that had a mirror mounted to the door and headphones for listening to music or watching tv and movies.

am i a dork?  of course i am.

as the flight got underway i happily reclined my seat, stretched my legs out and rested my feet and got comfy under the blanket while i turned on the tv and found one of my most favorite episodes of "friends" like ever.

the hub passed out immediately, as did the bean.

she slept right through the entire flight, but he woke up when breakfast was served.  and you know me...i try not to ever miss an airplane meal.

i even broke the knitting out for awhile.

but even i eventually gave in and snoozed for a bit.  i didn't even realize the hub had taken this until i went back to pick pictures to share here, heh.

and before we knew it, we were landing in honolulu.  it was the most relaxing, comfortable flight i've ever been on, and i'm pretty sure i'm beyond spoiled for regular seats now.  seriously - best flight EVER.  but now it was time to suck it up and get through the line to show our vaccination cards and start our vacation.

somehow though, we'd timed it just right and waited maybe ten minutes before we got in there, showed our cards and received our passes that ended up being pretty worthless because literally no one asked to see it as we made our way though the terminal.  oh well.

it was definitely a lot easier to get through that line than it was to pick up our rental car.  the poor hub was super frustrated by the process, but a little while later he had keys and we were hopping into our sweet ford something-or-other.

thanks to the time difference, by then it was still only noon - and so we decided to kick off the festivities with a late breakfast at one of our favorite spots on the island - liliha bakery.

i can't even tell you how many times we all find ourselves dreaming about those warm, buttery rolls with the most delicious jam.  and of course, spam and eggs with rice is a requirement.

and i don't know how, but it wasn't until this visit that we finally tried one of their "coco puffs" - a little fluffball of pastry stuffed with a light chocolate pudding and topped with a vanilla-coconut frosting.  we limited ourselves to sharing one, even though i could have easily devoured a couple more by myself.  i knew we'd have lots of treats over the next week.

then it was back in the car to get checked into our hotel.  hello, waikiki!

we had a really nice room with an awesome view of the ocean right out the window.

while the hub headed off to find a spot to relax and enjoy a cigar, the bean and i caught a quick catnap before throwing on bathing suits and heading downstairs to the abc store to buy floaties so we could hit the beach.  

for dinner, we decided to try marukame udon - just a few minutes away on foot and always with a long line to get in.  while the hub stood in line, he sent us across the street to hit up marukai in the international marketplace for snacks and stuff to take back to the hotel.

it was too late to catch the mochi donut stand, but that was okay - we knew we'd be back.

and because it was so late in the day, the fresh food cases were pretty empty.

we found the hub still waiting pretty far back in the line, but it eventually started moving at a decent pace.

once we got a foot in the door, we got to watch the guys behind the counter, hard at work on making the fresh udon noodles.

between the super delicious udon, the variety of freshly cooked tempura and the (kinda weird) tea, it was a pretty darn good first dinner.  and pretty cheap to boot.

back at the hotel, we found some of those famous rocking chairs ready and waiting for us to sit down and enjoy the breeze and the fantastic peoplewatching.

ah, hawaii.  how we missed you.

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