Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Day 1...in which Meryl Streep Saves the Day

I'm torn about where to start my trip report. Should I begin where it began....in Hawaii, or even Fort Worth and Los Angeles? Or since this blog is about Australia, should I skip all that and begin with the Australian stuff?

Well, it seems American Online has decided for me. For the first few days of our holiday, I took notes and emailed them to myself. Well, it seems that AOL deletes emails after a certain amount of time. Oops.

I can remember a bit of what happened. Maybe if I sit here with my sleep deprived brain, memories will come back to me.

I don't remember the flight to Los Angeles. I do remember the Los Angeles airport. Some of you might remember that I considered leaving the airport for our four hour layover. Well, most of you talked me out of that. The crazy thing is at LAX you can't even really leave your terminal! You have to go through security each time you want to go to a new terminal, and you need a boarding pass for that particular terminal to do that. We wanted to eat at California Pizza Kitchen, but we couldn't because it wasn't in our terminal. We WERE allowed to go to the international terminal. We walked there, struggling to find food that appealed to us.

We ended up with Sushi.

Jack had this sudden fear that we'd be fed Fugu (the infamous poison blowfish). Now, we're talking about a fast food airport place. I tried to convince him that that you have to specifically ORDER Fugu, and it's not served in casual places. He wanted me to ask them just to make sure. The idea of doing such a thing embarrassed me way too much and I somehow got my way out of that one (Begged? Threatened? Bribed? I forget which parenting technique I used). Anyway, we ate Sushi and did not die tragically in LAX.

Before dinner, we had spent some time in American Airline's airport club. I thought maybe I saw Oliver Platt. But it was a quick glance so I can't say for sure. I guess I could have looked back to verify. But I didn't want to be a gawker. Plus, it's more fun being able to say maybe I saw Oliver Platt than I thought I saw Oliver Platt, but when I looked again I realized I had been mistaken.

With maybe-celebrity-sitings, complaining together about LAX, and fearing Fugo poisoning; time went by pretty fast. The four hours were over before we knew it. We boarded our flight to Hawaii.

I think I had read the newest Alison Debois book on the way to LAX. I can't remember if I finished it on that flight or finished it on the flight to Hawaii. I think maybe on the flight to Hawaii, I started reading one of the Hazel Green books by Odo Hirsh. I didn't like it much at first. I was bored and getting antsy. The movie they were showing was Nights in Rodanthe. It didn't pike my interest enough to drag out my earphones. But I watched some of it as a silent film, trying to figure out what was happening. The end of the movie kind of got my interest though and I sort of wished I had watched.

By this time, it was dark, and I hate flying at night. Tim and Jack were both asleep. I closed my eyes, but couldn't manage to sleep. I was bored and lonely. I opened my eyes and looked up on the screen. There was something playing with Pierce Bronson. After they show movies, American Airlines will often show TV show stuff. Most of it doesn't interest me. And this looked pretty dumb. Some young woman talking to three men.

But then Meryl Streep appeared. I figured if Meryl Streep is in it, there's a good chance we have something valuable here. And THEN she started to sing! Mamma Mia! I had wanted to see that movie. And an Abba musical would be the perfect cure for the airplane blahs. But I didn't let myself get too excited. I figured maybe they were just showing a clip from the movie. I grabbed my headphones and hoped for the best.

It turned out it wasn't just a clip. The airplane was showing the whole movie! It was a wonderful surprise because the entertainment guide hadn't mentioned that they'd be showing it.

I was so happy and Mamma Mia became one of my secondary obsessions. Yeah. Don't worry. Australia is still number one.

The last two hours of the flight flew by very fast for me.

We landed in Honolulu. I've heard many times that Honolulu is a big city. It still managed to surprise me. I guess despite what I knew, I still expected it all to look like 50 First Dates.  It doesn't, at least not the parts we saw that night. It looks like Los Angeles in Lost. During the cab ride, I asked Tim if it reminded him of Lost. He said no. Later, I learned he was thinking I meant to island scenes. But almost ALL of Lost is filmed on Oahu...the Sydney scenes, the Korea scenes, the Middle Eastern scenes, the Los Angeles scenes, etc. The whole world is within Oahu.

We got to our hotel. Tim had interest in getting dinner, but I talked him out of it. It was late and I didn't want us sitting up waiting for our food to digest. I figured it would be better to get to bed early so we'd wake up early and have a full day in Hawaii.

Well, this is good. I remembered more than I expected.


Mim said...

Mamma Mia is awesome, it was Caitlin's major obsession at the end of last year :) But Pierce Brosnan cannot sing.

Dina said...


I kind of like how Pierce Brosnan can't sing. For me, it kind of added to the charm ; )

So nice to hear from you. Just got home. I'm super tired and a bit sad. It cheered me up to get a message on my blog.

Fe said...

Hullo hullo darling Dina!! I hope you wake up feeling a bit less tired and sad...

Australia is a sadder place without you in it. For me, anyway. Sorry I didn't call you before you left... the weekend became very full and hectic and it wasn't until Sat eve that I had a chance to call, and then realised that you would have left already.

I've posted a pic of all of us taken at World Square. Next time we'll get loads more snaps because you WON'T LOSE YOUR CAMERA (twice)!!

Glad to have you back blogging.... even if it means we can't meet up for another couple of years.


traceyleigh said...

I agree with Fe, that Australia is a sadder place without you in it! We miss you all so much. Life feels a bit blah at the moment. You also left a bottle of shampoo/conditioner at our place (I couldn't bring it on the plane because of it's size)...and I wash Tara's hair with it and think of you :-)...weird much? lol

traceyleigh said...

ps..I tried watching Mumma Mia at the hotel in Sydney but too much going on in the room and I came into half way. It looked good though. Shall have to rent it out on dvd now.

pps. Hurry up and post more :-D

Dina said...

Fe: Hi!! I'm really going to miss you. But we can talk here. Right? This is all new for me. Having Internet friends who used to be just Internet friends, but are also now real-life friends as well.

Sleep did make me feel better...and seeing my new nephew. He's SO cute.

I'm so glad you have the photo. I'm still hoping that we find our pictures! There were so many good ones.

Anyway, I'm so glad to have you as a friend!

Tracey: lol. Yeah. The shampoo thing is weird. But that's good because just today I was thinking I wish we had something of yours! Is that insane?

When we go to Hawaii, we'll have to "accidentally" leave/trade something.

This is why we get along so well. We're both very weird.

MsJamie said...

Glad you are home and had a good time!! Looking forward to hearing all about your wonderful trip. xoxo

Dina said...


Hi! Thanks!! I was just thinking of you this morning. I've missed you!

Louise said...

I loved Mama Mia! I was a real ABBA fan, sang along to everything in the movie LOL!

it's so good to have you back blogging again!

Dina said...


Abba is definitely one of my favorites now. I liked a lot of the songs before I saw the movie. But now I'm totally in love.

Anja said...

Yay, you're back! Now we get to hear about your exciting journey and your amazing ability to lose cameras.

Dina said...


I'm VERY talented at the lose-a-camera thing.

M+B said...

I laughed out loud about Jack and the Fugu. I was hoping you did have to double check at the sushi counter :)

Mamma Mia was also my saviour on one of my flights to the Middle East, or back!

Dina said...


That would have been funny about the Fugu. But more funny for me if someone else had to do it ; )

Retarius said...

Jack seems to be taking notes from the Bart Simpson handbook of "childing". That's a beauty..Fugu, the deadly sushi fish. You missed the obvious solution; send him to the counter and let him ask! Of course he might have followed up by calling out: "Mom, you'll be okay..they don't have it!!"

If you like Abba..you've acquired a genuine Australian taste.

Dina said...


I LOVE Abba. We listen to it whenever we have a long drive.

I think Jack actually HAS a Bart Simpson handbook. Really. I'm serious. I think it's called Bart Simpson's Guide to Life.

I think the kid is actually a combination of Lisa and Bart though...maybe a little more Lisa.