Our Last Day in Hawaii

(Note: As I read previous posts I see that I have once again been mixing up Jon & John. It was John that had slept into 11, not Jon. I’m going back to Mikko for John.)

The last day of our trip was on of my favorite days. Captain  Tim called us bright and early at 7 am and told us it was a “go” for snorkeling. Our trip had been cancelled the previous day due to Tropical Storm Flossie and I was thinking we weren’t going to snorkel at all. We were all excited after the call. We got ready headed towards Kona. When we got to the harbor I had asked a boat if they were our charters. A guy on the boat informed me that our boat is the one pulled by the ambulance and he wished us luck with a laugh. Funny guy…

They were running a little late as a new part was put on the engine and they needed to take the boat for a little test drive. I’m thinking “great”, but keep the thought to myself. On this trip was the Captain Tim, helper guy Randy, a couple from California and the Griswolds…I mean Gegens. I had envisioned the boat being larger, the ride smooth and the majority of our time in the water. The boat was ok, the ride was super bumpy! It’s a good thing Jon, Jeffrey, Michael and I took Dramamine and Mikko’s chemotherapy nausea wrist bands came in handy. It is unbelievable to me that everyone felt well.

The our goal was to get 14 miles down the coast to Captain Cook’s Cove for snorkeling. Along the bumpy way we learned a little history of the island and saw many beautiful sites (I was soaking wet from the start from all the waves splashing up and over the boat! After about 1/2 we saw some spinner dolphins and the captain stopped the boat for whomever wanted to get out and swim with them. Mikko and I passed on this opportunity. The guy from California was an experienced snorkeler and he was off with the dolphins before we knew it. And then there was Jon, Michael and Jeffrey….(I know for a fact that if they had watched Shark Week before this trip like they’ve been doing all this week..they wouldn’t have even gotten in the water.)

Michael: He doesn’t bother to stay and really listen to the instructions all the way through because like most teenagers…he thinks he knows how to do it.

Jeffrey: I look and see him getting gear and I’m a little nervous. I really didn’t think he would go in way out where we were.

Jon: I look and panic a little, “You’re not going in?!” Yep, he was going in.

Michael was in first and then I didn’t quite pay attention to him because there was an issue with Jon trying to hep Jeffrey in the water. Jeffrey was complaining that his mask didn’t work, he couldn’t see, he couldn’t breath…before I knew it those two were back in the boat. Then all the sudden Michael is swimming up fast! Captain Tim said it looked like he was “freaking out”. Michael aggressively climbed into the boat and immediately whacked Jeffrey with his swim noodle. All the while the California guy is swimming with the dolphins. There the 3 Gegen guys sit on the back of the boat and get “a talking to” from Captain Tim. It started something like, “I can tell you aren’t comfortable…” and then he went on to tell them what to do, which would have been more helpful earlier, but I think he was under the impression they knew what they were doing. He then positioned the boat once again near the dolphins and told them all to get in quickly. They all 3 jumped! All that was missing was the warrior yell of Geronimo! The dolphins didn’t stick around for that. Back into the boat, another lecture, back in the water and a little success with the dolphins.

We finally reached the cove. I could have stayed there all day and I really believe if we had done this earlier in our trip we would’ve done it again. The Gegens had finally settled down. Jeffrey and Michael were actually snorkeling face down kicking with their hips, not their knees. Jon was in the water and Randy and I were trying to coax Mikko into the water with little luck. Jon swam over and I got in, leaving him to work on Mikko. Before I knew it they were in the water. Mikko had on his fins and mask and was taking big breaths to look into the water.

The fish, coral and water were absolutely breathtaking! Colorful fish of all kinds were everywhere! We all loved it there! Mikko caught up to me and we held hands while we swam, floated and  looked at the beautiful fish. If he wanted me to look a certain direction he would poke me in the side and point underwater where I was to look. The kid can even boss me under water!

The bumpy ride, the 3 Stooges attempting to swim with the dolphins was all worth it! We climbed back into the boat for lunch, snorkeled a little more and then headed back up the coast. Mikko was so tired he fell asleep on the way back missing the spinner dolphins following in the boat’s wake.

When we got back to our hotel the guys took a break and I walked the grounds taking a video so we could always remember the views we had. Later Jeffrey, Mikko and I headed to the pool for one last swim and then it was time to go back and pack our things up. Boo!

Our flight wasn’t scheduled to leave until almost 10 that night so we had plenty of time to pack, go have a quick dinner, return the rental car and head to the airport. We knew before hand that our flight was running late, but we decided to hang out at the airport. It is unique as it is mostly an outside airport. Mikko slept all the way from Kona to San Francisco. We got off the plane there and right onto our next plane. Mikko then slept all the way from San Francisco to Denver and the other boys slept a little here and there. Jon is by far the worst flier…anxious and at times a tad crabby. He didn’t sleep at all. When we got to the Minneapolis airport 3 volunteers from Make A Wish were there waiting for Mikko and the rest of us. I almost burst into tears when I saw them…Tears of huge heartfelt gratitude for an amazing dream come true for all of us. It was all just so perfect! They walked us to our waiting limo and sent us on our way home to Hastings.

IMG_1190 IMG_1188 Causing a little trouble Waiting in Denver!John, Rachel and the other Make A Wish VolunteersIMG_1193What an amazing gift from Make A Wish! Each and every expense was covered all we had to do was worry about having fun and boy did we have fun! Thank you Make A Wish!!

I’m not proof reading tonight…too tired!

Love, Hope & Tons of Blessings,

Shelly

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