Saturday, June 21, 2008

As some of you know, my boyfriend jumped ship from the park service and landed on an island in the middle of the Pacific with the Fish and Wildlife. The only thing that sucked about that is I didn't get to raft the Grand Canyon. But I did get to go to Midway Atoll (where he is working) and heck the Grand Canyon will probably always be there, whereas a chance for a Midway visit may not.

On June 5th after working nonstop for 8 days, I flew to Hawaii. I never understand that time change thing as it took me 2 hours to fly to Hawaii and an entire night to fly back. Anyway, I spent June 6th exploring the USS Arizona and hanging out at the hotel before heading out to Midway. We left at 4pm-ish from Honolulu and arrived at around 930pm-ish at Midway. The plane can only land at night due to the abundance of birds that live on the island. Due to Murray having some rare sickness, there was a chance we were going to have to fly out the next day, but luckily he got over it.

The first day Murray said lets explore the town today. I'm thinking the island is 1.8 x 1.8 miles so can't we explore the island in one day. But really there is so much to see that each day we saw a different part. There are old buildings from the Battle of Midway and the Pacific Cable Company. And did I mention there are birds on the island? Let me start with "I saw the movie the birds when I was way too young". So on the island are many birds, but the albatross probably are the top bird. There are 500,000 breeding pairs. Now you realize that is 1 million birds. And usually, those birds have we are now at 1.5 million. And then there are juvenile birds so we will just say between 1 - 2 million albatross live on the island. There are albatross everywhere!!!!!

You know that loud noise the birds in the movie were making. That sound is sooty terns and on Eastern Island they had an abundance of those. As you will notice in one of the photos, I am crouching down because I just kept remembering that dang movie. I added 20 birds to my geeky life list.

I went snorkeling twice and realized on the second one, I don't like snorkeling under a murky pier and surely don't like Ulua sizing me up. Those are the big fish in the snorkeling photos. I don't like it when I can't see very far under water and what might be lurking down there. I got to see a lot of turtles and some monk seals. Did I mention I got to see birds. I also got to see some dolphins, but never had the chance to see any sting rays.

With Murray being still under the weather this is how our day usually went...breakfast at the restaurant (all meals are eaten at the restaurant with Thai cooks--yes that means each meal there was a thai dish). After breakfast, we would explore the buildings, walk the trails, look at birds, hope the wind would stop blowing for snorkeling. Usually after lunch, it was a nap and then relax until dinner. After dinner we usually went down to the cargo pier for a beer and to look for dolphins/sting rays. With the roads covered with birds, we used bicycles to get around and it was like driving an obstacle course. I came close to crashing once as Murray went on one side of an adult albatross so it started moving my way and I couldn't swerve to avoid it because I would have hit two other birds.

So I leave you with a link to the photos and Murray's quote:

When I get old(er) I'd rather look back and regret some of the things I did rather than some of the things I didn't do