Waikiki. Honolulu. Pearl Harbor. Oahu. Diamond Head.
Is there any city on earth that is so small, so remote, and yet so etched into our collective minds?
In the past decade, Honolulu has become famous as the nicest city in
If Hong Kong is the financial center of the east/west world,
|When you visit Honolulu, there's lots to do.
There's the Bishop Museum, which has the world's best Hawaiian and South Pacific artifact collection. It's well worth a visit.
Shopping is popular, of course.
I'm always looking to supplement my collection of Hawaiian music, so we
visit Borders Books. Borders must have a thousand Hawaiian titles, and over fifty of them
are in listening booths.
Food is a major past-time as well. Hawaiian food is excellent, and readily
But inevitably, you make your way back - like everyone
else - to the beach.
To sit and wait. And watch. And be watched.
|Japanese girls oohing and ahhing and taking pictures to the left of you.
Midwestern tourists wearing baseball caps and white socks to the right.
European men are baking in the sun with their bikini briefs climbing up their crack.
And the natives are just hanging, laughing, and trying to make a buck by taking your picture with a parrot!
On Waikiki beach, there are no majorities, no minorities, and no attitudes. Just aloha...
It's easy to fall into a rhythm. Swim, sun, surf, shop, siesta, stare, snicker, stare some more, salivate, slurp a drink - then start again.
At least till it rains. It rains quite a bit here.
|But the rains stop at night, so we wander the streets of Waikiki, amazed
at the mix of people.
People-watching in Waikiki is world-class. Every race, creed, and color converges here.
Unlike Singapore or California, inter-racial relationships are the norm in Honolulu (not the exception). This is probably because the people here are multi-racial themselves.
In fact, the bloodlines in Hawaii are so mixed, you could argue that masturbation is an inter-racial act.
The best show in Waikiki is the nightly parade of streetwalkers - a veritable Noah's ark of sexual preferences, accompanied by the rhythms of the street musicians, and the gawking of the tourists.
And when you've had enough of people, you can sit on the beach in front of the Hilton