Day 12: Farewell Hawaii

img_7078Day 12 is my final day on Oahu and my departure to the states. I spent the hours before my flight in a mad search for gifts. It tried last night without success but had more success today. The last roughly two weeks have been an amazing experience in visiting Guam, Saipan, Palau, Tinian, and Hawaii. My greatest hope is that the travel blog might inspire some of our readers to travel this far into the Pacific. It is worth it. Trust me.

My fondest memories on all of these islands will remain the people who I met. Spending times on these islands reminds some of us that life is about the friends and experiences that we forge. I often feel that lie in Washington, D.C. tends to squeeze out relationships and our capacity for simple joy. Islanders have not lost that capacity. They are less interested in resumes as they are relationships. I was overwhelmed by the generosity of the people that I met.

As someone who has two great loves for hiking and military history, these islands are obviously a dream come true. When you add the great food (and hot cuisine to boot!), it does not get much better.

Today it is back to the grind of Washington (which appears to have fallen apart in my absence). However, I am going to try my hardest to hold on to that island glow as long as I can – and I am not talking about the tan.


10 thoughts on “Day 12: Farewell Hawaii”

  1. I truly enjoyed your photos and commentary Professor. Have you been to Bataan or Corregidor or to Tarlac of Camp O’Donnell infamy or to Cabanatuan or Santo Tomas in Manila? Also ghostly places well worth the trip. Another site: Los Negros Island of the Admiralty Chain. There 800 troopers of the 5th US Cavalry successfully held off wave after wave of almost 5,000 Japanese Imperial Marines for 4 days and 3 nights without sleep, with their backs to the sea, re-supplied by air with no chance to evacuate, and no prospect of reinforcement until the afternoon of the 4th day. Their accomplishment led directly to the decision to liberate the Philippines.

  2. I have enjoyed this series from the islands. I lived in the places you visited for 4 years (excluding HA) and never ran out of fascinating things to see. It is unfortunate you did not have the time to visit the really interesting islands of Micronesia – Yap (stone money), Chuuk (airplanes on deck as they were when carrier was sunk), Pohnpei (the garden island) and Kosrae (hikers/divers paradise). There are so many sunken ships and downed airplanes in the jungles of these islands, that they have not all been catalogued nor even explored. To say nothing of the caves the Japanese dug into the lava of these high islands, from which we had great difficulty extracting them. These are the islands where “Operation Hailstorm” was launched by General Jimmie Doolittle, thus establishing the superiority of US airpower. Maybe next trip? Really enjoyed the photographs and your impressions of the islands and the people. Safe travels.

  3. JT – fear not, Washington, DC fell apart long before you left. Trump has exposed the enemies within. Now we just have to find and convict them.

  4. It’s ALWAYS the people, JT. Always! As much as I love history, culture, food, etc., it is the people that I remember.

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