Alex's Personal Blog

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The Death and Departure [DRAFT]

Posted: Fri, 09 Nov 2007 by

Lame! Lame! Lame! Sari and I are at the Lihue (Kauai) Airport waiting to board a flight back to Seattle. It really feels like we just got here. I have yesterday (Thursday) and today to cover in this post.Yesterday we had decided we were going to head to Tunnels Beach one last time before going home so we got up relatively early and headed to the North Shore. When we finally got there around 10:45a we couldn't find any parking so we parked about half a mile away and walked along the beach to Tunnels. While the walked was very pretty walking that far in the sand, with such difficult footing, was a lot of work. We finally got to the beach and took a few minutes of rest in the shade before jumping in the water.After about half an hour of snorkeling we noticed a big to-do on the shore. There was a lifeguard riding an ATV from a neighboring beach closer to where we were snorkeling. A surfer had signaled for help on the reef that was about half a mile out. A lifeguard swum out to the reef to help him out. The surfer was complaining of chest pains and eventually lost consciousness. He was eventually put on his surf board and brought into shore on a jet-ski where the lifeguard continued CPR before the paramedics arrived. They all continued to work on the surfer for about 45 minutes and then took him to an ambulance where he was carted off to the closest hospital which unfortunately was about an hour away. He was pronounced dead upon arrival. The cause of death was reported as a heart attack.The whole experience was very surreal. A few of the other surfers on the beach were involved in the rescue attempt and the man's wife and baby were there as well. The couple were apparently on a second honeymoon, visiting from California. I've never watched somebody die like that. It really affected both of us a great deal. I can't imagine what his wife is going through right now. To be so far away from home, away from all of her friends and family when a disaster like this occurs. It sounded as if he was doing something he loved in a place that he loved though.After the surfer was taken away everybody on the beach was in a state of shock. After several minutes we went back in the water but we didn't have our hearts in it at that point. We got our stuff together and left not long afterward.On the way back to the hotel we stopped at a burger place that was recommended to us called Onu Char Burger. It was a little hole in the wall in the middle of nowhere with plenty of wild chickens and cats around. We had to wait about 20 minutes but the wait was worth it as the food was delicious. We definitely would've gone back if e had had the opportunity.When we got back we spent a little bit of time by the pool reading and then spent the rest of the evening starting the long and painful packing process.This morning we started a bit earlier than normal. The first thing we did was throw on our snorkel gear one last time and take a few final laps around the enclosed swimming area in Lidgate park, right behind our hotel. Not the thrill of Tunnels by any means but we took a few last pictures.We both got cleaned up, finished packing, checked out and then headed to our favorite breakfast restaurant in the Coconut Marketplace called Eggberts. We both had very filling helpings of pancakes. The only necessity we had left to take care of was to return our snorkel gear to Snorkel Bob's which we did grudgingly.At this point we had tons of time to kill so we bought tickets for the Fern Grotto tour up the Wailea River. It was a fun ride up the river with singing and hula dancing and ended with a beautiful view of the grotto where we were serenaded with the Hawaiin weading song.After the tour with still lots of time to kill we wandered around the Marina and found a large botanical garden with about 3 acres of themed gardens from around the world. We wandered for about an hour taking pictures and feeding the chickens and peacocks which were plentiful.The rest of the day consisted of eating, checking out Hilo Hattie for some souvenirs and then returning our rental car and doing the whole baggage check airport stuff. I think we're all up to date now. When we get home (tomorrow in the early, early AM) I'll be organizing and posting our photos and video for your viewing pleasure. Now on to the depressing flight home. Mohallo Kauai! Aloha Seattle!

Tagged: personal
Updated: 2012-02-24 10:20:51 -0800