Monday, January 19, 2009

So I've been sick for the past couple of days... since Friday... so I've been stayin in lately... I'm surprised I didn't blog more but things are kinda settling down and thereisn't much to write about. So have a relatively stable job (as long as the company can stay a float... i think withe the percentage of the accounts of getting I'll actually be making more than I did back in NJ... but I'll need it since my cost of living is more expensive.. except for transportation... well I guess that was big one though... not sure how much gas is now but I was filling up every five days so thiry or so, six times a month so 180 per month. Guess i'm saving there... it's kinda odd not having a car and not actually needing a car, i really lucked out in the job and place i found...
ya know i've never been one for the beach and the sun... but i gotta say there's somethig comforting about just sitting in the sum and relaxing... just refreshing i geess.... anyway... so things are stable so now what... no more runnin aoround trying to find my next step... that was kinda of the fun of it as ai said before... not knowing where i'd be and just figuring it out... so what is there to figure out now? i guess my next move... see thie thing is I'm so impatient with things and if i don't see results relatively quickly i tend to move in a nother direction... never could think long term but i never wanted to either... and still don't... the only thing i know is what i knew before... i'm gonna need money... i save db efore and this came up and it's come in handy.. so whatever I do i gotta start saving too... at least a little... i always wanted to travel but i'm kinda thinking i don't want to do it alone... kinda sucks... i mean it's comforting to know that i can do it on my own... as i've always said i don't need anyone's help... but now ithat i've proven that i can (not really sure if i've proven anything yet) i'd rather have someone by myside while i do it... but that's kinda tough to ask of anyone cause not many people can just pick up ad go somewhere.. they have jobs that they care about and goals that hold them in place.... i'd like to go to laka and south america... but i doubt that's gonna happen anytime soon.. just running with my thoughts i guess...
i take pride in knowing that i am self reliant and resourceful... always feel that people are too dependent on each other and that people need to do things themselves.... so i guess that explains part of this move as well... well plus the whole craziness of it all... a know that's always been appealing to me... just out of the ordinary and unexpected... i'm just babbling now as i sit outside in the sun.... ( oh yeah i took off work today cause i'm still sick and didn't want to get the office sick).... anyway... til next time... i'll be sure to take some pictures... in the short term i ogtta go up to the other sides of the island and also to Maui (its only a sixty dollar ferry ride over) but i'll make a weekend of it. or something... take care everyone.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The view

oh yeah... address... well my mail should be forwarded to my address out here but in case you want it 1750 Kalakaua Ave, Suite 4000, Honolulu, HI 96826

enjoy the view... in the bottom pic... if you look at the center of the horizon and go down a bit, you'll see a little saucer thing... that's my office's building... pretty nice 5-10 min commute walking... no more 45 mins of driving like in NJ to get to some place where I didn't want to go to...

new place

Publish Post

So I went with the expensive one... took 3 trips back and forth to bring everything over... so the place is nice... only ran into one roommate so far... everyone keeps to themselves... for the first time... i had a decent cooked meal (well by my standards)... simple though.. eggs, rice, and unagi plus that japanese seaweed seasoning for the rice. Still good to be able to make myself something... so these guys are pretty dirty though... don't think they clean... the frig is disgusting... so are some other things... anyway... the place is still pretty nice though... just needs so initial clean up...

so here are some pics... i'll post the view later.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Searching for a place

So the past 3 days have been working immediately followed by searchin on craigslist for a place (a room or house share), playing a lot of phone tag who don't know how to do business, and biking from place to place.

Initially the search was a bit frustrating cause the places that turned up were these semi-ghetto unkept places. After 2 days, now I have 4 places to choose from that are from manageable to nice so here they are

1) $600, all utilities included , no AC, Wifi, cable with on premium (not really a factor); location - not bad, not great, roommates - a guy in his 40's who works here, was an alcoholic in the past but is clean now, likes to cook; the place - small room twin bed (not actually a room, he just put up a wall), very clean - he seems a bit of a neat freak; something odd about him though - he thinks we really get along and asked me to move in immediately - kinda a talkative guy if you get him started; it's an apartment building with mostly families in it; commute - about the same as now, 15 by bike, walking 30.

2)$700 all utilites included, no AC, wifi, basic cable; location - same as above with same commute; roommate so grad guy from Oregon and that I would not be able to meet until I move in since he is on vacation; the place is not as clean as the above but the room is bigger, more private and so is the common area, landlords are nice though

3) $675 all utitilities included, no AC, wifi, basic cable; location - nicer residential area, nice place, safe area, next to an elementary school, far from work - uphill climb coming back from work, not as bad as lorelei but longer distance; clean place unfurnished - roommates in my age group and similar situaions so that's a plus; kitchen is nicer than the other one, it's a house but has 5 rooms that are rented out but i don't think there will be much conflicts if we want to avoid each other

4) $800 all utilities, AC is room, 40th floor, highrise, wifi, cable, pool, gym, security, 5-10 min walk to work, nice area; the downside a bit more than i was hoping to spend a month; roomates - mostly professionals ranging in age group, one 60 year old guy, some my age that i didn't meet, kitchen will do. I think the first fragment says it all about this place.

So yeah i kinda set that up for everyone... and think i lead everyone to choose the one i would ... think i'm going with the $800. Just a bit concerned about financials but for $200 more than the cheaper place, i get to not live with a over friendly guy in his 40's plus all the amenities. Ya know, if i'm gonna be out here... i might as well go for the nicer place... right? Another problem is I've told number 2 that I would move in but haven't signed anything.. i really hate to back out because they are nice people... but hey... screw them... they can fend for themselves if they're renting out apartments. And the place in the residential area is nice... and will get me in shape but I think i'll get pretty sick of the commute really soon... it's probably like a 30 min bike ride to work. I think each are convinced that I'm a good choice and that I"m going to take the place though. Don't know if i'm playing them or they're playing me though.

Gonna make the decision by tomorrow afternoon. Any feedback would be nice. Should have taken some pictures. I'll just take some pictures from my new room on the 40th floor after i sign. Of yeah, they are all 6 month leases.

Hope everyone else is good. Talk to everyone later.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy new year!!

So new year's in Hawaii.... lots of fireworks (there legal here) and a couple of different fireworks shows on the island at various times.... other than that... everyone's just out on the street having fun... honestly nothing spectacular.... hope everyone's new year was good....

other than that... no new news... just working and getting by... making some money on the stock market... looking for a new place... looking for another job.... a lot of biking and wandering around... so there's this nice beach/park in a neighboring area that I always just passed by from a distance... it's actually pretty nice... good place for a barbecue or something...

Thursday, January 1, 2009

David Wu's Hiking Guide on Oahu, Hawaii

So since I've been hiking so much and plan on going many more by the end of the year, I decided to provide some basic information about hiking on Oahu in Hawaii.

First off, some background. I'm 27 (2009) and have not hiked until I got to this island back in December of 2008. So I'm still a novice and am learning slowly. I'm not overly athletic or in the best shape but hopefully that will change with these hikes. I'm stating so you can get an idea of my perspective. I am however adventurous, don't mind taking risks, a bit reckless, and love to explore. That's my real drive for doing all this.

Completed Hikes - The earlier ones do not have any technical information or any guidance I will be providing it in the future when I return to gather the data.
  1. Diamond Head - Easy
  2. Manoa Falls Trail - second blog with additional pictures - Easy
  3. Maunawili Fals Trail to Maunawili Waterfall (return trip on 08/29/09) - Easy
  4. Hawaii Loa Ridge - Medium difficulty - Done with the Sierra Club - A nice but strenuous hike along a ridge to a Summit overlooking Waimanalo. Breathtaking view but tough ascent (at least for me with my novice experience)
  5. Tantalus (1st variation) - 07/26/09 - Intermediate due to the length - Wandering around Makiki.
  6. Nuuanu to Manoa Falls starting at Judd Memorial Trail - An interesting hike that started late evening into the night.
  7. Manana Trail to Waimano Falls - 08/09/09 - Relatively easy trail but a sudden descent to the falls. Gotta love waterfalls.
  8. Aiea Valley Loop Trail - 08/16/09 - An easy 4-5 mile loop.
  9. Likeke Trail (one way, alternate route) - 08/22/09 - Easy/Intermediate
  10. Mt Olympus (incomplete) - 08/23/09 - St Louis Heights area - no trail info - pics only
  11. Waimae Falls Park - 08/30/09 - Easy stroll in a park to tourist falls
  12. Kahana Valley - 09/05/09 - Nakoa Trail and additional loop - follows Kahana Stream. Easy/Intermediate - The terrain isn't difficult but its like 6 miles. Easy to get lost.
  13. Koko Head Trail (Short Variation) - 09/06/09 - Nice trail. Some decent climbs but still easy. Great views of the ocean. NEWER UPDATED POST ON ENTRY 27. SEE BELOW.
  14. Koko Crater Stairs - 09/07/09 - Easy/Intermediate - It's short and a straight climb. 1048 steps.
  15. Maunawili Trail - 09/12/09 - Pali toWaimanalo - Easy terrain but lengthy 9+ miles. Not much too see.
  16. Mt. Olympus from Manoa Valley ending in St. Louis Heights - 09/13/09 - 5.3 miles, lots of climbing, intense! Intermediate but tough for a novice hiker.
  17. Laie Falls Trail - 09/27/09 - 8 miles round trip. Easy/intermediate gradual climb but long. Decent falls along the way. Didn't go to the end of the trail though.
  18. Sacred Falls Trail - 10/10/09 - 4.5 miles round trip. One of the nicer falls on the island. Park is closed due to tragic rock slide in 1999.
  19. Search for Mo'ole Ditch - 10/17/09 - Me in a failed attempt to search for Mo'ole Ditch and stream - getting lost in the woods
  20. Kalauao Trail to falls - 10/18/09 - Short hike about 4 miles round trip. Relatively easy. There is a short steep descent to the stream which is a bit tough. Reminds me of Waimano Falls hike 
  21. Kaena Point -  10/23/09 - A beautiful long up along the Leeward coast to the western most point on the island. A bit more than 5 miles round trip. Easy trail but no shade and long commute.
  22. Makapuu Lighthouse Trail - 11/07/09 - Easy. Casual mostly paved trail along the Eastern most point of Oahu. Nice scenic views. Popular and crowded hike.
  23. Olamana Trail (to the first peak) - 11/15/09 - This is a popular hike but not an easy one. It's relatively steep compared to the past hikes I've done with numerous sections requiring the aid of rope. Many sources rate it between intermediate and difficult. If you want a challenge try going to the third peak!
  24. Waiomao Stream Trail / Waiomao Falls Trail - 11/22/09 - 3 beautiful waterfalls in one hike! Off the beaten path hike. Not too difficult but not recommended for beginners. Less than 4 miles in Palolo Valley. This trail will take you to Ka'au Crater if you continue but I stopped after the 3rd falls.  
  25. Maakua Ridge Trail / Papali Loop Trail - 11/29/09 - An easy loop trail on the Northen Windward side of Oahu. Short and quick with some nice views. 
  26. Maakua Gulch Trail - 11/29/09 - An intermediate hike that follows a gulch to a small falls and swimming hole. Very interesting, very secluded... very narrow. A majority of the trail is along a dry river bed and along the actual stream. About 6-7 miles round trip.
  27. Koko Head Trail - Full Loop 12/05/09 - Return to Hanauma Bay to hike the full loop of this moderately easy trail. About 3.3 miles with some climbs and descents along the east side of Oahu.
  28. Lanikai Pillboxes / Kaiwa Trail - 12/24/09 - A short, simple hike to some beautiful views of the Windward Coast, overlooking Lanikai.
  29. Kauai, Hawaii - Nou'nou Trail East - 01/01/10 - A nice warm up hike full of switchbacks on the island of Kauai. It overlooks the Eastern coast.
  30. Kauai, Hawaii - Hanakapiai Falls - 01/03/10 - An 8 mile round trip, starting at the beginning of the Na Pali Coast hike, at the Northern end of Kauai. Spectacular views of the coast, beautiful gigantic falls.
Farewell Hawaii. I'll continue the list when I return. I wish every hiker the best on Oahu.

    So I'll be providing some basic guidelines about hiking on Oahu. I tend to break them though but then again, I haven't done any really tough trails yet.


    • Never hike alone. In the worst case scenario (you get injured), you'll be stuck.Your phone doesn't necessarily work in all areas. There are so good groups to hike with Sierra Club and Hawaiian Trail and Mountain Club
    • Never hike at night. Well this is obvious. It's easy to get lost. Unless you're prepared (mentally and physically) to spend the night in the woods. I've done this once so far. It was interesting but it was also a relatively easy hike.
    • Don't go off trail. I say this to prevent erosion and destruction of Hawaii's environment.
    • Check the weather. As perfect as Hawaii's weather is, always good to check. Also the previous day's weather will affect the terrain. Sliding down on mud is fun as long as you can stop but you have to be in the mood for it.
    • Plan your route. It's better to do so but you can always just get a hiking book and show up at the trail head. That's my style. I actually enjoy being lost and finding my way. I haven't been on unmarked trails so it's all good.

    Gear: Minimize the amount of gear you'll be using. Little by little it adds up. Unfortunately for me, I am often busing it to the trail head, so I have to carry everything I need for the hike and also for the trip to and back.
    • Bring water and a snack. Water by itself is good but your body needs more. Some vitamins, minerals, and calories will help. Depending on the length of the hike, bring more water. The longest I've done is an eight mile hike (excluding my 3 day trek). 1 full liter was enough. I had more water at the trail head after where there was a fountain. Couple of granola bars or something like that is usually sufficient.
    • Rain gear: Something like a poncho. Umbrella is pretty useless if it rains hard and annoying to hike with. I suppose its still better than nothing.
    • First aid equipment. Debatable. Depends on length and difficulty of hike. Not needed for touristy or crowded hikes. I have never needed it so far.
    • Suntan lotion: self explanatory
    • Bug Repellent: I've never used it but I can see how it can be handy. I don't think you'll need it for ridge hikes. Definitely for any valley or waterfall hikes.
    • Flashlight (and extra batteries): Something light and for later afternoon hikes, long hikes or night hikes. No need for early day hikes.
    • Shoes: I've been using my Merrell walking shoes which have been fine. Though hiking boots are ideal for the steeper hikes. Plan on getting them dirty and possibly water logged. Some hikes on the island can be done in slippers... like Diamond Head and Monoa Falls Trail. Even if you have boots or slippers, bring a pair of slippers for after the hike. It's such a relief after.
    • Extra shirt and/or pants: Ideally, leave them in the car. Otherwise you may have to hike with them. I find that a fresh t shirt is nice after the hike. Just like the slippers.
    • Phone: Well it doesn't work everywhere but still better to have.

    Additional resources
    Some good websites for hiking on Oahu, Hawaii.

    Official Hawaii site - Na Ala Hele - Hawaii Trail System & Access
    Sierra Club - Organized hiking group with weekly outings

    Hawaiian Trail and Mountain Club - Organized hiking group with weekly outings

    Hawaii Waterfall Hikes on the Island of Oahu - List of 20 cascades on Oahu
    Waterfalls on Oahu - List of 5 waterfalls. Just additional information.
    Frank's Hawaii Hiking - Someone's personal page, giving some more information about various trails. Good for gauging the elevation gains.