Wednesday was the first day of the NAISA conference, so I headed to the University of Hawaii-Manoa for the day, while Kristin headed to the beach. The conference didn’t plan the logistics of getting everyone from the hotel to the university campus very well, so I didn’t get to campus until 30 minutes after the opening session began. The opening ceremony was held outside, but there weren’t anywhere near enough chairs for everyone to sit, so I stood for the remaining 45 minutes. The university campus was only about 10 minutes from the hotel, but it was closer to the mountains. The difference in the weather was dramatic. While we were standing outside for the opening, it began “raining” on us. The grass that I was standing in was so wet that by the time we finished, my shoes were drenched. Thankfully, they dried out in a couple of hours.
The campus is beautiful, and had enormous trees everywhere, including a baobab tree! I’ve only ever seen these in pictures or movies!
I attended some very interesting sessions and made some really good contacts. The conference ended at 5:45 and then I had to wait for 45 minutes (!) to catch the shuttle to go back to the hotel. Like I said, logistics were not thought through very well.
I finally got back to the hotel a little before 7, so I changed clothes and Kristin and I headed out to find supper. We didn’t have a rental car yet, so we rode the trolley down to Waikiki Beach. Neither one of us knew what we wanted to eat so we just walked around for a while window shopping and taking in the sights. Waikiki is a very expensive, touristy area so shops like Coach, Prada, and Ralph Lauren were not unusual to spot. We finally decided on Italian and had a delicious supper!
We caught the trolley back to Ala Moana Center and were the last two on the the trolley. We had originally thought the driver was unfriendly, but once we were the only ones riding, he became quite chatty. We made it back to our hotel a little after 9 and crashed. We still weren’t adjusted to the time difference, and we had to get up super early the next morning to pick up our rental car and make it to Pearl Harbor by 7:30am to make sure to get tickets.