We had a tsunami scare here in Hawai`i yesterday! As a result of the Chile Earthquake (my heart goes out to the people in Chile still dealing with the aftermath) massive waves traveled across the Pacific and were estimated to make landfall in Hawai`i around 11:30 a.m. This was a big deal because Hawai`i was actually hit by a tsunami in 1946 and it killed many, many people. The civil defense sirens went off at 7:00 am, and they evacuated parts of the islands (including famous Waikiki). There were roadblocks to prevent people from travelling on coastal highways, and the grocery stores and gas stations were clogged by people trying to get emergency supplies. Civil Defense recommended that people get to high ground, so lots of people headed to the mountains, and the boats went out to sea to avoid getting thrashed around in the harbors. Luckily, the waves never really came; instead the tsunami looked like a bizarre and crazily low tide, with 2-3 feet of water getting sucked out of the coast and exposing sandbars/reefs etc. I think Japan might have actually been hit by waves as high as 8ft, but we were definitely lucky here in Hawai`i.
Anyway, this is going to sound kinda bad but even though it was a tsunami warning day, we went to a fair. That's right, a FAIR! My highschool, Kamehameha, throws an annual fundraising fair called Ho`olaule`a, and it just so happened that it was yesterday. We had some quick thoughts about whether it was a good idea to go to Ho`olaule`a, but in actuality Kamehameha is on a mountain, so we were much safer there then we were at home (near Waikiki). Can I help it that safety also involved good food, good music and lots of fun? Anyway, we watched the tsunami tide come in from the mountain; I can honestly say I've never seen the ocean look like that in my life...the current patterns were all messed up, all the boats were out of the harbor, and the water levels were fluctuating wildly... it was a bit freaky.
It's hard to see from this picture how weird the water looks... trust me on that; it looked REALLY weird! Anyway, from this picture you can also see how it made sense to still go to Ho`olaule`a even with the tsunami warning... look how high up we were!
It was crowded! I think everyone had the same idea we did and figured they were pretty safe from the tsunami on the mountain, fair and all!
They don't seem to care about the tsunami... I miss being able to go on these little kiddy rides!
Delicious smoked meat plate... yum! They had all kinds of yummy Hawai`i fair food, like Chicken yakitori sticks, fried saimin (like local ramen noodles), fried fish plate (Moloka`i style), kulolo (sweet coconut and brown sugar treat), Hawaiian food plate, and hot malasadas (Portuguese fried bread with sugar)! Best part of Ho`olaule`a: eating a plate there and then taking one home for dinner so you don't have to cook!
Here's my sister... she looks like this because she was right in the middle of proving to me that she could still fit in the lockers when she heard people coming up the stairs; then she yelled "People are coming!" and pulled her butt out of the locker really fast (she hurt herself a bit, haha!) I told her she should have stayed like that until the people passed by and asked them if they could hand her that book on the ground. Ha ha ha ha! I'm a mean big sister.
Anyway, thanks for all the prayers and well wishes from around the world, and Happy Tsunami Warning Day everyone!