Aloha again from Oahu! The past two days have been busy ones. Yesterday I was up at the crack of dawn to get a bus going north to Kualoa Ranch, a huge land reserve that offers multiple tours and breathtaking scenery. I took the movie/TV tour, which took me through some gorgeous landscapes, some marked with the names of the shows filmed there (including Lost). I also took the Jeep Tour, which put about 10 of us tourists in a large jeep, taking us deep into jungle-like terrain. It was a very bumpy ride (we were warned ahead of time) – but, again, very beautiful. A buffet lunch was served after our journeys – with some of the best ribs I’ve tasted in a long time.
Returned to my hotel, the Aqua Bamboo and Spa -- a very spiffy (and affordable) boutique hotel in the heart of Waikiki -- for a short breather, then headed back to the Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival – about a 15 minute cab ride (or 30 minute bus ride) to the Honolulu Academy of Arts. I saw A Four Letter Word, a romantic comedy about an improbable gay pair. The producer, director and some cast members (including Charlie David from the here! TV gothic gay soap opera, Dante’s Cove) answered questions from the audience after the screening. Also saw The Sex Movie, where two men and two women, gay and straight, confront each other about their sexuality.
Today a native Hawaiian buddy of mine took me to lunch at an undiscovered gem, the Gulick Deli, where you can get a huge plateful of Japanese food for less than $7. My favorite was the sweet and sour spare ribs. To walk off our big meal, we went to the aptly named Queen’s Surf, a very small strip of beach catering to our crowd. Then it was back to the film fest for more movies – and a benefit gala at the new (and very hi-tech) Honolulu Design Center. More delicious food and friendly faces. As you may have guessed, I’m having a great time here!