My wife Trini and I are preparing to travel for a month to the Hawaiian Islands and the So. Pacific.
We are getting our clothing and gear in order to take an exploration journey into the largest ocean. The Pacific Ocean covers approximately 46% of the earth's water surface.
It's very important to make sure we build up our physical stamina for the trip. We are planning to go snorkeling and perhaps some scuba diving so its important for us to keep going to the gym and exercising. We go about 3-4 times a week. We work out on the Nordic and weight machines and swim 8 laps of free-style. I just met with my physician Dr. Keneko to check me over. All seem good and she reminded me to cut down on the carbs. I am grateful to my travel agent Rachelle Delgado De La Cruz for keeping tabs on the details and last minute issues. I want to keep in shape so that if I run into any sharks I'll seem more like a minnow swimming fast rather than a main course meal moving sluggishly about. What we will really need to be careful with are the jellyfish in those areas. Their sting can be fatal. We will be careful.
We will start our cruise by boarding our ship in the Los Angeles Harbor and travel southwest toward Hawaii. We will begin the cruise by navigating slightly diagonally going southwest for four days until we reach the Hawaiian area. Trini and I will be revisiting the four islands of Hawaii, Oahu, Kauai and Maui.
After we leave the Hawaiian Islands we will then be crossing the equator and will immediately be leaving behind our Spring season and entering into the Fall (the seasons between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres are always the opposite.
After four days in the Hawaiian islands the ship will continue traveling southward. We will cross the equator and enter into the Polynesian Island area in the southern section of the Pacific to visit American Samoa (city of Pago Pago), Samoa (city of Apia), Bora Bora and Moorea (both part of the French Polynesian islands), and the latest of the French islands in the region which is Tahiti (the capital city of Papeete). My French is rusty but here is another chance to practice it.
We will begin entering the vast Polynesian Island area also commonly referred to as So. Pacific islands. This watery region has two general seasons throughout the year which are referred to as wet or dry. April is considered the beginning of the six month dry season. We should expect to get a few showers but it is not the constant heavy rain downpours for days nor do we have to worry about experiencing the flooding that comes with their monsoons.
The Polynesian area is a very large area of the Southern Pacific Ocean that lies between the Hawaiian Islands and Australia/Asia. There is approximately1,000 islands from volcanic activity scattered throughout this area. Historically, ships would anchor at the islands to get provisions as they traveled between the continents. I understand that this area was also visited by whaling ships.
I want to share that I have not met many persons that have traveled to this region of the world. Like most of us, I have seen images and pictures of the islands and their clear emerald waters on billboards, magazines and in the movies. From what I have seen via media it seems like a tropical paradise. They have lush green hills, the gentle warm ocean breezes, waterfalls supporting large areas of flowers and friendly people. Now I will have the opportunity to see and discover for myself what is myth and reality.
I want to respond to a inquiries I commonly get asked when persons learn that we are going to this remote region. Persons ask, "Why travel so far? Why spend so many days at sea just to see a few islands?" I am reminded that I have visited many of the islands in the Caribbean and this will make the third time to the Hawaiian Islands. So what would make visiting these islands any different from the others. It is true that, from a strictly financial analysis position, it's far less to go to the Caribbean and visit tropic islands that travel westward and return for a month.
My response is the following: When I was in college I read John Stuart Smith's book Utilitarianism. Basically it stated that right and wrong should be measured in relationship of maximizing happiness and reduce suffering of the greater number of people. I then began to focus on the need we each have to be able to pursue our sense of happiness. I studied and taught economics and I emphasized the purpose and value of money in our present civilization. I blended the two ideas and highlighted that money is a tool that can help each of us live better and happier. Traveling to a new region of the world, such as the Soouth Pacific, brings me on a personal level a great deal of pleasure and happiness.
My curiosity for discovery and intrigue of see what is there is heightened. I visit the library with the goal to learn as much as I can about the people and culture that I will encounter. I am looking forward to discovering how persons, who live so far away from me and seemingly different, might be, at the same time, also very similar to me. I want to hear about their mythical stories, their art and culture and hear about how they explain our existence. I want to overwhelm my sense of smell, sight and sound with new and unique experiences. I am hopeful that I can get a small glimpse of what inspired the 19th century author Robert Louis Stevenson to write about the islands. French artist Paul Gauguin was also captivated by the beauty of the islands.
Ultimately, I want to rediscover what it is to be a child once again and feel that tremendous rush, thrill, anxiousness and excitement that I feel when I experience new cultures throughout our world.