July 23, 2015

Tide Pools in Oahu


A lot of my time spent in Hawaii consisted of me wanting to be in the water and wanting to experience something new. My first proper day in the ocean was epic beyond words, and it was everything I wanted. We went up to the north shore and grabbed ourselves acai bowls before jumping into the ocean.

We sat in the sand while eating our bowls, watching as the sun dipped lower and lower towards the water. A random shower of rain passed through, ten or fifteen minutes of sprinkling that we could track coming from the other side of the beach.

The craziest part was watching the rainbow inch closer and closer to us from behind houses until it was right in front of us. A full-fledged rainbow! I had never seen the end of a rainbow before, and I did what any normal person would do -- I freaked out and sent my family a ton of photos. (Mostly, I wanted to exclaim how there wasn't a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and I felt thoroughly lied to).

When the rain moved on to unsuspecting victims elsewhere, we stripped off our layers and jumped into the water. I have never felt water so warm before. My time exploring California beaches have taught me that the ocean is normally frigid, and in the summertime (at best) just cold. The tropics are where it's at. Clear water, warm ocean, stretches and stretches of beach.




A photo posted by Skim ⚡ (@dearskim) on

The next day, we woke up bright and early to make our way to some tide pools that Caitlin had been wanting to check out. Determined, we made the long trek down the side of a cliff to get to our destination. It wasn't easy -- although it's not so physically demanding, it does take a bit of leg work and balance, given how steep the way down is. 








This is the ridiculous wave that threw me against the rocks and gave me a pretty decent cut on the back of my thigh. I was moving the GoPro to get a shot of the waves and set it up further out so that we could catch all of us. While on timelapse mode, this monster came in and we all subsequently climbed out of the tide pools and made our way back up.

Sorry the animation is so off -- I tried to cut down on the file size and mistakenly forgot to change the frame duration.



The way up was so much more difficult than the way down. I was dripping in sweat, and my arms were shaking. Because the rocks are so steep, I often had my throw my bag up on the ledge above me so I could use my arms to lift myself up.

While the tide pools were amazing (and I'd go again in a heartbeat), the trek was not what I had expected.




Caitlin and I left that place with just a few cuts and bruises, while the boys left practically unscathed. Completely unfair! We went back to her house afterwards to repack our backpacks and head on over to another hike -- but that's for next time.

If you're interested in seeing some clips of the tide pools, you can click here! It was so surreal; definitely a highlight of my year.





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July 20, 2015

Around Oahu


I have been extremely unmotivated to go through my Hawaii photos. For the most part, very few of them make sense together -- I took shots here and there, focusing mainly on getting footage. So forgive me for the lackluster posts. I promise you that Hawaii is beautiful and that my photos don't do it justice (though you probably already know that).

Anyway, it rained a lot the first few days after I arrived. Hawaii was so much more humid than I expected! I foolishly disregarded the fact that the Pacific and the tropics are all horrible in the summertime. Cue tropical storms, constant rain, and air that feels as thick as honey. When it's breezy it's bearable, but when it's not... Well. I don't wish that on anybody.

My second day in, Caitlin's parents drove us around the island so that I could see all of Oahu. We stopped by a string of stalls selling local fruit on our way, in hopes of grabbing a bag of lychee on the go. We didn't end up buying any, but it was nice to enjoy a small stretch of sunshine on an otherwise rainy day.




Caitlin and her family! I just wanted to shout out another thank you to them for hosting me and for showing me around Oahu. In their blessed car with the most wonderful of air conditioners. Amazing.




C's dad bought a coconut while we were snapping photos along Kahana Bay Beach Park. I wouldn't go out of my way to go there again, but it's worth stopping by if you pass by. The mountains look epic in the background, and you can walk along a little deck to stand above the waves.



One of my favorite stops from that day was Pali Lookout. It was my first encounter with wild chickens -- they were everywhere! Roosters, chicks, chickens, all walking around and crowing at strangers passing by.

We even saw a stray cat on the prowl not very far from these little chicks!

Pali is awesome. You can get panoramic views of Oahu, seeing as far as the changing colors of the ocean water. It's incredibly windy, but extremely refreshing on hot, humid days.




I promise the rest of my Hawaii photos aren't so cloudy. It was just that one day that I was out snapping photos that the sky looked so gray! Can't wait to share the rest with you all.

In the meantime, go check out Caitlin's posts so far. She made a video and a blog post!





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July 6, 2015

Hawaiian Adventures



Before I get into anything, I hope you've all been well! I know it's been a while since I've blogged anything. To give you the briefest of recaps, I took an important test back in June and am now working towards planning my next steps career-wise. Or life-wise. So it's been busy!

I spent the last bit of May studying, and June post-test whipping my butt into shape for my Hawaii trip. While I didn't exactly get to the place I wanted to be body-wise, I had a really good time and have never felt better about the way that I look.

Sometimes the chubs doesn't have to be a bad thing, you know?

Anyway! I put together a little video of some clips I filmed on the GoPro while I was in Hawaii (most importantly, I swam with sea turtles). It took a lot of time, so please be kind. As fair warning, the video is shaky and my editing isn't the best, but it's the effort that counts -- right?

I'll be back to blogging and will be posting all of my photos from my trip within the coming weeks.

A huge thank you to Caitlin for hosting me for the week and showing me around!




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May 18, 2015

Sister time in LA



My sister came back into town last week, so I've been a little busy running around with her. For the most part, we've been eating, but we've squeezed in a bit of studying (less than a month to go!) along with some good ol' California fun.

Of course, we've had to schedule around the sudden rainy weather and intense humidity, but overall it's been pretty good weather. Compared to what most people go through (sudden snows and tornadoes sprinkled across the US?), I really can't complain.



We had a little outside barbecue over the weekend, followed by a hike in Griffith. On another day, we went bike riding from Santa Monica down to Muscle Beach. It's the first time I've ever biked along the beach, but it's something I'd definitely want to do again! My dad and I rode tandem while my sister rode my bike -- note for next time, wear lots of sunblock.

And do not ignore the chest area because I came away with a really gnarly sunburn.









To top off the weekend, we feasted. Most importantly, I made a shrimp boil for the first time! It was surprisingly simple -- I was inspired by a YouTube video I had come across during the week and had been thinking about since. I used tiger shrimp that we got from a Vietnamese market on the way home after church, and let me tell you -- that texture is unreal.

If I may, to quote my sister: "It's almost like the texture of lobster meat."

Paired with crabs and good family time, I nearly worked myself into a food coma. And by nearly, I mean I am typing this as I'm dozing off.







Sorry for the short post! I haven't been lugging my camera around, and the next few weeks are going to be super intense for me. I may be around in little bits and pieces -- but Hawaii is happening next month! I can't wait to experience that soon, and to take all of you along with me.

It's going to be fun. It's going to be epic.

Thanks for being patient with me!





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