Oct 18, 2022 – South Shore, Kaua’i, Hawai’i, USA
My excursion to the Allerton and McBryde Tropical Gardens doesn’t leave until 9:00AM, so it’s an easy start to the day. I get up around 7:30AM and go down to the Grand Dutch Cafe for a breakfast of smoked salmon, raisin bun, blueberry muffin and a cappuccino. I show up in the pier building ashore around 8:45AM and we are quickly organized into a line. Once the last two people arrive, we’re off in the excursion shuttle, but not before one man refuses to wear a mask, so our guide reads the riot act to him and he eventually puts a mask on. Our guide reveals that the ship let them know that there is some sickness onboard, so they are requiring masks for our group when in their shuttles.
Once that is sorted out, we drive to the gardens site, which takes the better part of an hour since the road into the property is quite rough, requiring slow going. It’s a beautiful area of the south shore of Kaua’i which I haven’t experienced before. The number of plants in the McBryde Garden is endless: 6,000 rare and endangered plant species collected from throughout the Pacific Basin and the world. The Allerton Garden is architecturally designed with outside ‘rooms’ which the Allertons originally used for entertaining guests – some rich and famous like Jackie Kennedy-Onassis. We have a nice lunch at the snack bar consisting of shredded chicken or shrimp with focaccia bread, potato salad, and soft drinks or bottled water.
After lunch, we visit the waterfall in the McBryde property by driving deeper into the upper Lawai Valley, and then leave to return to the ship. We encounter a firetruck and ambulance doing a rescue on the way out of the Allerton and McBryde property, which delays us a bit while our guide sorts out passing the emergency vehicles on the narrow road. We make a quick stop at the Spouting Horn blowhole, which is putting on a good show today. All Aboard is 2:30PM, and we are the last to board with only five minutes to spare!
I go up to the Sun Deck to enjoy the sail away from Nawiliwili Harbour, and I have a beer with some friends while watching our ship maneuver out the narrow passage, taking a time lapse video handheld. Once the ship is in open water heading for Vancouver, I return to my stateroom to get cleaned up, and then I have a quick dinner in the Lido this evening: Beef Sukiyaki over fried rice, which is quite filling and delicious.
At 8PM I attend The Step One Dance Company Presents: Humanity Reprise. I thought it would be a different show than the one I already attended on our sea days to Hawaii, but it is exactly the same, which was disappointing. Our cruise director takes the stage ahead of the performance to make some announcements about upcoming events and activities, and to let us know that the ship’s time will change overnight (clock moves forward an hour). Some crank of a man yells at him from the audience as he is leaving the stage that he should be letting everyone know there is COVID-19 aboard the ship. He briefly stops, but he doesn’t respond and vanishes backstage.
I walk the Promenade Deck this evening for a circuit and a half, enjoying the warm, tropical air and the sound of the ship. I then go up to the Crow’s Nest Lounge for my nightcap of a Tanqueray 10 classic martini as I annotate today’s photos. I remove the Jethro Mobile SIM from my iPhone, which I’ve been using for voice calling and data in Hawai’i, since I won’t need that mobile service again. It worked very well, was reasonably priced at CA$35 prepaid on Amazon for 4Gb and unlimited calling for 30 days. I would buy service from them again when I travel to the USA in future.