I'm currently sitting at the computer on the lanai, after having unsuccessfully tried to take a nap. At least the migraine and nausea are gone, and I'm not too sleepy.
We woke up this morning at 5:30, so we could meet the Captain of "Ocean Riders" at the wharf at 6:30. It was a TERRIBLE night's sleep for me as Mikayla moaned through much of the night, and I was constantly feeling her forehead to gauge her fever. Our only saving grace is that she's learned how to swallow an Advil which has done wonders for the temperature and pain - Praise God for that.
We knew that today's adventure wasn't a super idea with the kids feeling the way they were, but as we were already locked into paying for it, I felt like the kids could cope and perhaps do well with the constant distraction versus another lazy day at the pool in the sun.
As you'll note by the pictures, the boat ride actually did good for them - it ended up lulling them both to sleep. The most expensive nap-inducer we've ever purchased, that's for sure. But, as it was an all-day experience, the nap didn't have them missing much.
John was not at all a fan from the start. In fact, my friendship with Stephie was also put in jeopardy as well due to very high swells and resulting motion sickness that caused. This particular trip is the only one of its kind to completely circle the island of Lanai which seemed like a great idea at the time of booking, but once we were in the ocean had us really wondering if we could endure that long. Fortunately, both of the staff that ran the operation were just awesome and super accomodating - and the other 2 couples with us were super cool too.
The first stop had us swimming to shore from the boat and taking a break on a sandy shore. Mikayla was terrified of being in the open ocean and cried the entire time. Nice way to start things. Since Mommy had to pee something fierce - and everyone else bailed out of the boat as well, she didn't really have an option. From there, the kids slept while we rode out the waves to the first snorkeling stop in which we decided to pass on.
The next snorkeling stop once again had me jumping in due to "nature's call". I'm glad I did - it was the best fit as far as snorkel gear - and just amazing to see all of the fish in their natural environment. Neither the kids or John wanted anything to do with it, but lucky for them, the fish weren't shy, and all it took was a little bread tossed overboard to have the fish visit them instead. The last snorkel stop was more of the same - Brayden did make a try at it, but quickly decided it was too cold and returned to the boat.
Then came the really rough waters - I'm telling you, it was "hold on or else". While John suffered in the back, I have to admit that I was having a blast, feeling like I was on a ride at Disneyland. Seeing Brayden pronounce, "this rocks" made me feel a bit better too.
With just an hour left, the only wildlife we'd seen was a sea turtle upon departure and the tropical fish. While I felt like the experience was worth it, I was still a little bummed there was nothing more spectacular to claim we'd experienced. That all changed when we got a glimpse of some fins - and then more - yes, we'd landed in the middle of a pod of approx. 150 spinner dolphins. I cannot even describe my delight. I was jumping to every angle of the boat, pointing, gasping, grabbing the underwater camera and leaning over to try to shoot pics of them as they swam by. It was one of the most phenomenal glimpses of nature I've ever been a part of. In the distance, we saw the breach of a whale, and the magnificent show of its tail as it submerged. The kids were as enamored as me, and bless his heart, John was going to town with the camera - catching the dolphins as the leapt and spun above water. (Trivial fact - they usually do this to dislodge a sucker fish which commonly attach themselves to the dolphins).
The rest of the trip was certainly anticlimactic. More choppy water as we returned the distance to Maui, a very sad looking husband which ended up throwing up over the boat (but, he felt much better afterwards) and myself getting to the point in which I wanted to do the same as a result of holding my neck in an awkward position riding on the side ridge of the boat and all of the turbulence. We did spot another mommy whale and her baby, but I have to admit at that point, I just wanted back to solid ground. Yes, I had gained my empathy for Steph and John.
But, was it worth it, oh yes, a thousand times, yes.