Sunday, January 11, 2009

Breakfast in Paradise

We just got back from the Hawaii (the Big Island), where we did a mix of camping and luxury hotel-crashing. Wondering what breakfast options await you on this tropical island? Wonder no more, because we’ve got the lowdown.

Breakfast in the resorts

There were a couple of breakfasts at the resorts we stayed at worth mentioning. Our first day in Hawaii was spent at Waikoloa Beach Resort, north of Kailua-Kona. This was a pleasantly gentle introduction to the Aloha spirit: lagoon-style pools and hot tubs with historic lava fish ponds, leading out to a scenic beach and bathwater-warm ocean with nary a ripple on the water. Torches at night, lots of families, huge Hawaiian-style BBQ ribs that night at their in-house restaurant, everyone saying aloha to you—you get the picture.

The next morning, the in-house place had a huge breakfast buffet. There was a separate room for just this purpose, walled in by glass and attended to by white-jacketed omelet chefs. We were tempted, but decided to order off the menu to avoid getting bloated before snorkeling. I had a meticulously arranged trio of macadamia nut pancakes, french toast, and waffles. We ate outside, at a table under an umbrella, the myna birds edging in for crumbs, and the cool ocean breeze against freshly showered faces. It was nice. But, after communing with nature—our morning was spent snorkeling with no less than five different sea turtles—the vibe of the place seemed different, the air now heavy with stoic Midwesterners staying with aging parents. It was a clear sign we need to move on and get camping.