After two flights and total of 9.5 hours of flying we arrived in Kona yesterday afternoon. Our only goal post arrival was to stay up until 8pm making it a solid 24 hours without sleep (not counting some naps on the plane). After dinner at Huggo’s, I was putting my bike together while KT was lying on the couch begging to go to sleep.
We crashed hard at 8pm and woke up before 6am ready to go start our day. We connected with the other members of the Endurance Corner Women’s Division at the Pier for an easy swim. The pier has a lot of cool energy and we had a chance to see two world champions, Crowie and Chrissie Wellington. There is a reason it is nicknamed “Digme” beach!
After our “striking a pose” it was time to get in the water:
The water was a touch cooler than I was expecting. Okay, even the weather was a touch cooler than I was expecting. It is warm, humid and windy but not Caymans hot, humid and windy. The swim was very clear with some manageable swells. Despite my fear of the wildlife, I really enjoy swimming in the ocean.
We rewarded ourselves with breakfast at Lava Java (it really is a great place to eat) and a grocery shopping trip with Gail. I found some new fruit to try at the Farmer’s Market:
I can’t remember the name of the fruit on the left but it is delicious. Just peel and eat the center (not the pit). Dragon fruit will get it’s first tasting tomorrow.
A nap soon followed and then I had my easy spin on the Queen K. The Queen K is a one lane highway in each direction with a lot of traffic and a bike lane. It is surrounded by lava with the ocean in the distance. Once I got out of Kona, the clouds cleared and it was rather pleasant.
Like the Caymans, the wind is a constant and seems to change frequently. I flew on the way out with a nice tail to side wind. On the way back I had a bit of a grind into the wind and had to watch for a few gusts in spots. The hills that I road on are hilly but nothing dramatic.
I have an easy run and that is it for today. Some things we have learned so far:
- Airlines try to double dip on baggage fees. Be pleasant and persistent.
- Getting your luggage at the airport takes forever. Wear shorts.
- On the way into town, there is a Kona coffee store in a steel building on your left. Worth a five minute stop to have coffee to brew the next morning.
- Stay awake until 8pm to get on island time. Go out to dinner. Put together your bike and you will be much happier the next day.
- Parking is challenging downtown. Plan on finding a spot and leaving your car. Everything is very walkable.
- Get to the Pier early to see the sun position and check your goggles for glare. There is a place to store your gear.
- There is a local market to buy tourist stuff and local fruit and veggies.
- If you shop at Safeway you will fine a natural food market a few stores down.
- Get a condo downtown. Much more convenient.
- Rent a car early. Limited supply.
Tomorrow we have an early start with the 9th Annual Kuki’o Blue Water Swim. Aloha!