Sunday, September 24, 2006

Hawaii Visit - Tuesday - Pau Hana Time!

Tuesday, September 6th was probably the most frustrating day for lots of people on the island of O'ahu... at least it was for anyone who needed to get from town to the west side. An Army vehicle was being transported without a permit on the H-1 from Pearl Harbor to Schofield Barracks when it smashed into a pedestrian overpass right by Aiea High School. The DoT engineers declared the overpass structurally unsound, and so the State decided to close the freeway until they could remove the rest of the overpass. That of course meant gridlock, and people spent as much as eight hours sitting in traffic trying to get home! I can't imagine that... I would have to pee my pants so bad!!!

Fortunately for me, I was not a part of all that mess. At all. I was already in town, had lunch with my friend Mary Ann at Mariposa, and then went for Blondies with Bob at Waioli Tea Room in Manoa. After that was one of my favorite things - Pau Hana!

Again for you mainland people, pau hana bascially means finished work... well which in turn means go out for drinks and pupus (appetizers) at a local watering hole. This Pau Hana was actually a get together of folks who are part of, a social and business networking site for people who live in or have lived in Hawaii and now live elsewhere. I used to be the Honolulu "instigator", but last year I passed the torch to Alicia when Kenji and I moved to the mainland.

This time the watering hole was Palomino's, in Harbor Court, overlooking Nimitz Highway. The bar was packed, not only with Pau Hana attendees, but probably mostly with people who were trying to avoid all the traffic for as long as possible. After all, in Palomino's we had a great view of Nimitz, which is one of the main arteries that gets you west of the airport, and in this case it was a barometer for how traffic was moving.

So here are some photos - you can actually tell this one is from the end of the evening, because Miles is wearing everyone else's name tag.

I think this next photo is of course a no-brainer. Miles has to know a shot like this cannot be passed up for inclusion somewhere on the 'net...

Sometime during the year that I was away from Hawaii, the Dave's Hui on GPH got some competition from a formidable up-and-coming Gary's Hui. The two on the right are Gary and Garry, and there's Rob, I think a Gary wannabe...

Earlier in the day, I think I had stopped by an art gallery store in Ward Center, where I picked up some free postcards that were advertisements for some of the contributing artists. Since I had a book of stamps with me, I decided to write a little postcard to the folks at my workplace, telling them I was not coming back. :P Then I had all my "witnesses" sign it for me. :)

Me with Susan, one of the founders of Global Pau Hana - she lives on the mainland too, and like me, was back in town for a visit.

And me with Alicia - who instigated this Pau Hana event, her last one, too. She's not leaving Hawaii (as far as I know) - just time to let someone else step up to the plate. :)

Finally, at around 10pm, the last of us at Palomino's decided it was time to brave the traffic westward. I was on my way down King Street when Daniel called and he could hang out for a while. So just before I would have been stuck in traffic, I turned around and went to Waikiki. At just about midnight I decided it was probably ok to head home - and fortunately for me, I chose the right way. H-1 between town and Salt Lake was completely clear. Rebecca started her journey home about an hour before me, but she took Nimitz... and only arrived home about five minutes before I did!

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