Maria had a seminar in Honolulu so she dropped me off at Waikiki. I went for a morning swim at a small beach near the War Memorial called San Souci. It's known as the "gay" beach and it's off the main stretch of Waikiki - closest to Diamondhead. The water was calm and the beach was nice and quiet (in comparison to the craziness of the main drag further down the main beach of Waikiki).
I bumped into Jennifer, a friend of Maria that I'd met on my previous trip to Hawaii. She suggested I go to Bogart's for their famous breakfast bagel and then next door to the juice bar for a smoothie. The queue for breakfast was very long but definitely worth the $4.50!
Afterwards, I walked along Waikiki and window-shopped. The beach was packed with sunworshippers and, after having spent 2 weeks in laidback Fiji and a couple of days in the Hawaiian countryside, I felt overwhelmed with all the people, cars, noise and shops. Ate lunch at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Mall which, unfortunately, was disappointing - teriyaki burger - although it was Big Island beef, it wasn't the most flavourful although the sweet potato fries were memorable!
Maria finished her seminar early and we set off to Ala Moana shopping centre to buy some goodies for the evening as we were invited to partake in her friend's weekly sunset yachting cruise! The yacht set off from Ala Wai harbour with a motley crew of 10 - half of whom had never set sail on a yacht before (myself included). The captain encouraged us to take turns at the helm (seaman's term for wheel) and explained how you can tell the difference between port and starboard. Handy tip: "port" and "left" are both 4-letter words so you can remember that port is left and starboard is right! Met some lovely people onboard the yacht and came in to the harbour just in time to see the Friday night's fireworks which are set off from the Hilton Hawaiian.
Unfortunately, Maria's boyfriend Sean, locked his keys in his car, so we had a complicated process of going to collect his keys from his dad's house. As it was late and he lives on the other side of the island, we stayed at his apartment in Wai'anae which is situated in the wild west of the island of Oahu. This part of the island is much more arid/rugged and decidedly more "Hawaiian". Many more native Hawaiians and Polynesias have settled here and there is a bit of a "rough" element in the area. It is still breathtakingly beautiful, but the poverty is all the more noticeable in comparison to the wealth and opulence of Honolulu further south.