June 25th:

Sometimes it's the little things that mess things up the most. It didn't ruin my day, but it did leave a sour taste in my mouth. But more about that later.

Got up and out by about 10am. Checked my email quickly (after trying three of the six machines in the Hospitality Room and finding the first two broken in some way (neither of which was broken on Friday)), and then took an indirect route to the Burger King in King's Village. I needed to eat some kind of lunch before my submarine ride, which I would return from in the middle of the afternoon, kinda late for a big lunch before my dinner cruise. One double cheeseburger and some root beer was enough, and I went over to the Ohana West to meet my shuttle.

The shuttle was a little late, but we all got to the submarine in time. After a photo and a wait, we got to board the shuttle ship which took us out to the submarine. I had booked the larger submarine, and it wasn't cramped or claustrophobic at all. The portholes were nice and large, and the ladders were easy to climb down. It didn't take very long to load everyone on (all 64 of us), and we were off.

The tour was nice. We saw lots of fish, lots of artificial reefs, a wrecked plane and two wrecked ships (all purposefully sunk as artificial reef foundations), and three green sea turtles and a manta ray. The other side of the boat saw a shark, but our side didn't get to see it. I won't try to describe everything - the pictures turned out well in the main.

At the end of the trip, we all transferred back to the shuttle ship, where I got some good pictures of the Atlantis XIV (our sub), and the Atlantis IX (the 48-seater sub), and both at once (one coming up as the other went down). The shuttle ship got us back to shore, and the shuttle trolley got us back to the Ohana West.

I was still obsessing about books, and I debated taking the Waikiki Shuttle to the Ala Moana Shopping Center (supposedly the largest mall in the country) because as such, it must have a bookstore. I managed to find a guide to the mall and I looked at it -- and there's no real, full bookstore!!! (Of course, the guide could be wrong ...) So I stayed in my room for an hour and a half, until it was time for the dinner cruise shuttle.

I'm not going to go into a lot of detail about the dinner cruise. I paid for the thing back in February, but the voucher was a little wonky (I had to call to find out my pick up time and place). Turns out that wasn't the only omission - even though I booked directly with Atlantis Adventures via their website, but they didn't bother to put me on the windowseat list, which was full. I paid extra for that, and didn't get it. That bothered me at the time, and it bothers me still. I could see it if I had gone through some agent, like Alohatopten (which hasn't messed up yet, though I've only done one of those yet), and they didn't communicate correctly, but this was with the company itself.

And another note to self (and others): these tour/events that supply a meal are probably not worth it. The luau last night was so-so, and the "Royal Sunset Dinner Cruise" (as opposed to the standard buffet cruise that was going on downstairs) wasn't all that hot either. The appetiser of a hunk of salmon was okay, and so was the salad. The next course was lobster, which I knew, and which I turned down (don't like it). Then, the "turf", which wasn't even a steak, but rather pot roast, which I got with rice, probably because I had it well before everyone else (they were still wrestling with their lobsters) and the garlic mashed potatos weren't ready yet. The dessert, a chocolate mousse cake, was okay too. Tomorrow, after my Oahu tour, I'm going to a steakhouse and order exactly what I want for dinner!

The entertainment was nice - a broadway singer and some hula dancers. I went outside and took some pictures, even one of the sunset. I had a coupon from the submarine for 20% off Atlantis logo merchandise, but there wasn't anything on the shuttle ship I wanted so I planned on finding the gift shop on the dinner cruise ... but I never found it until I was standing back on land waiting for my shuttle bus to drive up.

Lots of little dissapointments (window seat, food, gift shop) added up to a blah evening. The only really good thing about it all was that on the shuttle bus out to Pier 6, I saw a full-blown Borders Books & Music store, and it's on the Waikiki Trolley's route. Hoo rah!

Time to go to bed, so I can be fresh for tomorrow's tour. I've gone through one camera battery, and I've got about 140 pictures logged. I wonder how many I'll take tomorrow.\par

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