Archive for November, 2009

The Droid Experience

November 6, 2009

Just waking up in the morning gotta thank God
I don’t know but today seems kinda odd
No barking from the dog, no smog
And momma cooked the breakfast with no hog

Ok, so it wasn’t quite like how Ice Cube rapped it, but “today was like one of those fly dreams” and definitely “A Good Day“. 8)

Why you axe? Welp, this morning, the much anticipated Motorola Droid was released to the public through Verizon Wireless, and, like every other nerd out there, I found myself standing in line, waiting to get mine.

Billed as the iPhone killer (watch iDont commercial here), this smartphone attacks and addresses all of the iPhone’s shortcomings. Being a non-AT&T Wireless sub and a Google and open source fiend, I literally NEEDED it. It’s running the newest Android 2.0 OS (the first phone with it) and has neat features like seamless Gmail and Facebook integration as well as free navigation via Google maps. I literally just got it, so I didn’t have much time to play with it yet, but here are a few quick tips/things I learned in this short time. Perhaps it’ll help some of y’all out.

Ed’s Tips/Notes:

* Not sure how crowded the other stores are, but the Pearl Highlands one I went to was not too bad. They opened at 7AM, and when I got there at about 6:30, there were only 4 people ahead of me. The woman at the front of the line said she got there at 5:15 with the next guy coming at 6:15. Before the doors opened, there were just about 15-20 of us (including couples). From what I heard, Verizon had 200 in stock, so if you get down there now, you should be ok.

The line outside Verizon Wireless at about 6:45AM
The line outside Verizon Wireless at about 6:45AM

* The phone itself is $199 ($299 with a $100 mail-in rebate). With the Snap-On Gel Cover ($16.99), expect to pay over $300 out the door.

* With this phone, you must upgrade to a $29.99 data plan (if you didn’t already have it). I was coming from an enV Touch with a $15 VZW Mobile Web plan/package, so it was about double. It made me think about it for a split second, but for the extra goodies and the Wi-Fi action, I think it’s worth it.

* If you’re used to slim (narrow) phones, this one’s pretty wide. Compared to my Touch, it’s a beast. Gonna be interesting to see how it fits/feels in my pocket.

The Motorola Droid next to the LG enV Touch
The Motorola Droid next to the LG enV Touch

* To keep the phone as slim (flat) as possible, the QWERTY keypad was built pretty flat. If you have big hands (like me), it may take some getting used to.

Closeup of the Droid's QWERTY keyboard. Like how I focused on E-D?
Closeup of the Droid’s QWERTY keyboard. Like how I focused on E-D? 8)

* The Snap-On Gel Cover may also feel like it’s getting in the way sometimes, so using it would be up to personal preference.

The Motorola Droid with slider open
The Motorola Droid with slider open

* The camera’s a bit tricky to get used to (accessing, saving, sharing, etc.), but once you get the hang of it, the 5 megapixel camera takes pretty good shots. Here’s a pic my friend/co-worker Maribel using the Droid in artificial light.

(resized) 5 Megapixel photo taken with the Droid
(resized) 5 Megapixel photo taken with the Droid. Click here for the full version.

* Even though you have VZW backup enabled, you must still manually import your contacts into your Droid (via Gmail). You actually download the CSV file from verizonwireless.com/backupassistant, and then import it into your contact list in Gmail. If you have tons of contacts in your Gmail account and tons of numbers in your addressbook (from your old phone), it could get a little messy. I still have yet to check what it did to my dupes (it said it merged them). Yikes!

Check out the step by step shots (for downloading and uploading your contacts) below.

The Verizon Wireless Backup Assistant login page
The Verizon Wireless Backup Assistant login page

Your list of contacts in Backup Assistant
Your list of contacts in Backup Assistant

Gmail Contacts page
Gmail Contacts page

Import Contacts screen in Gmail Contacts page
Import Contacts screen in Gmail Contacts page

Importing CSV into Gmail Contacts
Importing CSV into Gmail Contacts

Import complete!
Import complete!

Big ups to Tara Reyna from the Pearl Highlands Verizon Wireless store. She’s really helpful and smart, so go see her a-ight? For more information on the Droid, go to DroidDoes.com or visit Motorola’s consumer page here.

All in all, it was mos def, A Good Day… 😉

Any questions or comments? Post ’em below…

Fave Friday – Gadgets

November 6, 2009

So by the time you read this, I will have probably picked up the new Motorola Droid phone with the rest of dem nerds early adopters. 8) I don’t think I’ve been thisexcited for something to come out since the original Nintendo (after playing Super Mario Brothers on the FamiCom in Japan)! LOL!

Yeah, yeah, it’s just a phone, and, YESH, I highly doubt that it’s gonna be the iPhone killer that they want it to be, but to me, it’s “the one”… at least I think so.

So in honor of this wondrous day, let’s do a faves sound-off for your all-time favorite gadgets. In the comment area below, post your favorite gadget(s) in the history of your life the world. 😛 Add your personal stories for them for extra special brownie points. 😉 And just a head’s up, if one of y’all says “Pong” I’m gonna giggle. 😛

Here are just a few so you guys have your own stuffs to talk about…

Ed’s Fave Gadgets:
* Since I’ve already mentioned it above, I vote the US release of the original Nintendo Entertainment System.
* My HDTV!
* The Motorola Droid

My extra special brownie point story is in my Droid Experience blog . Check um out and lemme know what you t’ink k?

The Droid Experience
The Droid Experience

So what say you? Post your fave gadgets below…

Happy VHO7V Friday! Have a great weekend and I’ll see y’all next week!

Where In Hawaii is Edward Sugimoto? – November 4, 2009

November 4, 2009

First off, I’d like to send mad props to bruddah hemajang who was responsible for last week’s WIH stumping photo that garnered 70 comments. Yeah E YEAH! Second, mad respect to bruddah MakiSushi for becoming just the 5th person in WIH history to win back-to-back kine action (especially impressive as these were his first wins ever) after guessing Sam & Syd’s Cafe. Can he become the first to capture that elusive turkey this week?

This week’s photo comes to us courtesy of the beautiful island of Maui. I did some shmall kine “Photoshop-ping” to the sign (see below) so it’s not so obvious, but I’m pretty sure one of y’all will get it anyway. To make things a lil’ more interesting between guesses (and to boost the comment count of course! 😉 ), post your favorite things (food, beaches, shops, etc.) about Maui too. Holla!

Where In Hawaii is Edward Sugimoto? - November 4, 2009
Where In Hawaii is Edward Sugimoto? – November 4, 2009

Hints: No means no. 😉


Da “Where In Hawaii” Winnahz Circle!

Da Leaderboard!

  1. Coconut Willy – 7.5
  2. snow – 6
  3. Takeshi – 4.5
  4. HNL2LAS – 3
    Paco – 3
  5. M – 2
    jr. – 2
    Syxx – 2
    hemajang – 2
    NaPueo – 2
    MakiSushi – 2
  6. skycastles – 1.5
  7. GumbysHorse – 1
    ijiwarui – 1
    kako mochi – 1
    BarbieQ! – 1
    teej – 1
    Rodney – 1
    Ynaku – 1
    frankie – 1
    jack – 1
    miLL-viLLe – 1
    NeedaHobby – 1
    Kage – 1
    getITon – 1
    k15 – 1
    Marvo – 1
    kuya.d – 1
    Scott – 1
    YN – 1
    rayboyjr – 1
    mcat – 1
    carokun – 1
  8. MoOgooGuypAN – 0.5
    Coconut Willy’s wifey – 0.5

Back to Back Winnahz!
*  snow, Paco, Syxx, NaPueo, MakiSushi

P.S. Adding this footnote to all future WIH posts… If any of y’all have pics you’d like to contribute to the “Where In Hawaii” game, feel free to email them to me and I’ll post um up in future blogs! And yes, you aren’t allowed to guess on those days! LOL! 😛
P.P.S. GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO PHILLY! World Series Game 6 today at 2:57PM on KHON Digital channel 0003 or HD channel 1003! Hopin’ to stay aliiiive! Just two more wins boys! 8)

Happy Hump Day Where In Hawaii Wednesday y’all. 🙂 Shooooots!

Men Are Just Happier People

November 2, 2009

Thought this one was pretty funny… And for those of you who were thinking of scoldin’ me for postin’ this, it was forwarded to me by wifey, so there! 😛

Enjoy gang. Hope y’all have a Happy Fun Day Monday! Even though my Phillies are in deep (DEEP!) trouble, I still wish you a good one! 😉 Nah, nah! Have a great week yo!

NOTE: D’oh! Was just told that sistah Shauna already posted this one so I’ve moved it to the bottom (for those who still want a giggle) and am now giving you new, bonus kine action up top! 😉 Enjoy!

WHY MEN ARE NEVER DEPRESSED

Men Are Just Happier People What do you expect from such simple creatures?

* Your last name stays put.
* The garage is all yours.
* Wedding plans take care of themselves.
* Chocolate is just another snack.
* You can never be pregnant.
* You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park.
* You can wear NO shirt to a water park.
* Car mechanics tell you the truth.
* The world is your urinal…
* You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky..
* You don’t have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt.
* Same work, more pay.
* Wrinkles add character.
* Wedding dress: $5000. Tux rental: $100.
* People never stare at your chest when you’re talking to them.
* New shoes don’t cut, blister, or mangle your feet..
* One mood all the time.
* Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat..
* You know stuff about tanks.
* A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase..
* You can open all your own jars.
* You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness.
* If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend.
* Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack.
* Three pairs of shoes are more than enough.
* You almost never have strap problems in public.
* You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes.
* Everything on your face stays its original color.
* The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades.
* You only have to shave your face and neck.
* You can play with toys all your life.
* One wallet and one pair of shoes — one color for all seasons.
* You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look.
* You can “do” your nails with a pocket knife.
* You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.
* You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes.

NICKNAMES

  1. If Laura, Kate and Sarah go out for lunch, they will call each other Laura, Kate and Sarah.
  2. If Mike, Dave and John go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat Boy, Godzilla and Four-eyes.

EATING OUT

  1. When the bill arrives, Mike, Dave and John will each throw in $20, even though it’s only for $32.50. None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.
  2. When the girls get their bill, out come the pocket calculators.

MONEY

  1. A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs.
  2. A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn’t need but it’s on sale.

BATHROOMS

  1. A man has six items in his bathroom: toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel .
  2. The average number of items in the typical woman’s bathroom is 337. A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of these items.

ARGUMENTS

  1. A woman has the last word in any argument.
  2. Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.

FUTURE

  1. A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.
  2. A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.

SUCCESS

  1. A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.
  2. A successful woman is one who can find such a man.

MARRIAGE

  1. A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn’t.
  2. A man marries a woman expecting that she won’t change, but she does.

DRESSING UP

  1. A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the trash, answer the phone, read a book, and get the mail.
  2. A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.

NATURAL

  1. Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed.
  2. Women somehow deteriorate during the night.

OFFSPRING

  1. Ah, children. A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments and romances, best friends, favorite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams.
  2. A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
A married man should forget his mistakes. There’s no use in two people remembering the same thing!

For a little fun, how about adding your own reason(s) (in the comment area below) why you think Men Are Just Happier People… 8) Here’s mine:

IMAGE

  1. A woman looks at other women and instantly compares herself to them.
  2. Men never look at other men. 8) Oh yeah! You like dat one yeah!? 😉

And please check out my new article: Koko Head Crater Trail Hike – Nature’s Stairmaster.

Koko Head Crater Trail Hike - Nature's Stairmaster
Koko Head Crater Trail Hike – Nature’s Stairmaster

Shoots!

P.S. Parts of my Shane Victorino interview will be airing on Tiny TV starting tonight at 10:30PM on OC16 (Oceanic Digital Channel 16 or HD Channel 1016). Check it out! 🙂

Koko Head Crater Trail Hike – Nature’s Stairmaster

November 1, 2009

A sudden increase in the amount of Koko Head trail “tweets” and “status updates” lately prompted me to rearrange the sched – just a tad – and dig up some old images to pen this article. Who knows? After I’m pau, maybe I can jump on the ol’ bandwagon and send out a sweet tweet myself.

Back in April, Mark and Noele (friends of wifey and I), wanted to do something outdoorsy. An easy hike perhaps. Growing up in Hawaii Kai, I suggested the Koko Head Crater trail hike (pu’u ma’i), figuring stairs and a straight path shouldn’t be too bad for the three out-of-towners. Right? 😛

At first glance, the beginning of the trail is a bit tricky to find. You have to make your way through a hidden, mini trail behind the left field fence of the Mustang/Pony league baseball field.

Path to the trail head starts behind the baseball fields
Path to the trail head starts behind the baseball fields

Walking up towards the Koko Head Crater trail head
Walking up towards the Koko Head Crater trail head

That eventually leads to a paved road, which is the end of Koko Head Park Road, I believe.

Noele and Mark, the happy couple, on the way to the Koko Head Crater trailhead
Noele and Mark, the happy couple, on the way to the Koko Head Crater trailhead

Follow that, and you’ll get to the grassy portion that leads to the trailhead…

Still with lots of energy
Still with lots of energy

… which leads to the beginning of the infamous Koko Head “steps”…

They have no idea what's ahead of them *grin*
They have no idea what’s ahead of them *grin*

Posers
Posers

Do you think they got their tickets for the gun show?
Do you think they got their tickets for the gun show?

Believe me, this energy will not last. There are approximately 1,100 “steps” on the trail so before long, the four of us will be sporting very different looks on our faces…

The “steps” are actually part of an abandoned railroad track that was once used by the military to transport supplies to a lookout shelter at the top.

"Steps" on Koko Head Trail hike
“Steps” on Koko Head Trail hike

Continuing a bit more, the energy will drain, but you’ll start to get a good view of your surroundings…

Noele drained, Mark still ok, and wifey somewhere in between.
Noele drained, Mark still ok, and wifey somewhere in between.

Looking southeast, the shooting range that caused the controversial closing of this trail comes into sight.

Koko Head Shooting Complex
Koko Head Shooting Complex

To the Northwest, you’ll see the beauty that is Hawaii Kai. 🙂

View of Hawaii Kai
View of Hawaii Kai

Continuing on, yet more energy is expended, but you’ll find solace in knowing that you’re about halfway there.

Noele resting, Mark losing it, and a peace sign from yours truly
Noele resting, Mark losing it, and a peace sign from yours truly

The view looking back
The view looking back

How do we know we’re about halfway? The dreaded bridge. Dun-dun DUN!

Bridge-like portion of the Koko Head Trail Hike
Bridge-like portion of the Koko Head Trail Hike

Yup yup, that’s no illusion. The bottom drops out from under the “steps” and forms a bridge-like path in the middle of the trail.

Some sure-footed hikers choose to walk over it, while others (of the fraidy cat kind) opt to crawl.

Me making fun of wifey
Me making fun of wifey

Noele taking the safer route next to Mark
Noele taking the safer route next to Mark

Ed’s Tip: For those who’d like to avoid the bridge altogether, there is actually a makeshift path that goes around the bridge to the right (left on the way down).

Once you conquer the bridge (dun-dun DUN!), it’s much of the same, but steeper.

View from about 3/4 of the way up...
View from about 3/4 of the way up…

When you’re up this high, your views to the left and right change quite a bit.

The Koko Head Shooting complex is now just a mere speck.
The Koko Head Shooting complex is now just a mere speck.

Your view of Hawaii Kai is partially obstructed by shrubbery.
Your view of Hawaii Kai is partially obstructed by shrubbery.

One final look behind…

Looking down at about the 85% mark on Koko Head trail
Looking down at about the 85% mark on Koko Head trail

… and ahead…

I see the light!
I see the light!

… tell us that we’re almost there!

Time to make one final push to the summit! You can dooooo eeeet!

The gang gets reenergized after catching a glimpse of the summit.
The gang gets reenergized after catching a glimpse of the summit.

Alas, the graffiti art of Sergeant “Mok” greets us as we take our final step.

Artwork at the top of Koko Head trail - A welcome sight
Artwork at the top of Koko Head trail – A welcome sight

With several shaded areas here, this would be a good opportunity to get out of the sun and catch your breath, drink some fluids or hurl up your breakfast. I won’t name any names. *grin*

Good place to catch your breath in the shade
Good place to catch your breath in the shade

Ed’s Tip: don’t be fooled into thinking that that was “it”… Once you catch your breath, follow the somewhat hidden trail that wraps around to the right to discover an immaculate view of the other side of Koko Head. What a beautiful sight from about 1208 feet above sea level!

View from the top of Koko Head
View from the top of Koko Head

View from the top of Koko Head, overlooking part of Sandy Beach and the Hawaii Kai Golf Course.
View from the top of Koko Head, overlooking part of Sandy Beach and the Hawaii Kai Golf Course.

Ed’s Tip: As the winds are very strong up here, it’s a nice place to cool off, but watch your footing and be careful at the same time.

Here, you’ll also find an abandoned military shelter, which makes for a great place to rest…

Mark, Noele and wifey taking a snack break next to the shelter
Mark, Noele and wifey taking a snack break next to the shelter

… as well as take a group photo from on top of.

Group photo from atop the shelter. Yes, it's either REALLY bright or we all need a tan. We'll just say it's really bright! ;)
Group photo from atop the shelter. Yes, it’s either REALLY bright or we all need a tan. We’ll just say it’s really bright! 😉

Going down is a breeze. Depending on the step and the length of your leg (and your knees and your athleticism 😛 ), you could literally jog/run down the stairs.

Wifey, Noele and Mark playing it safe
Wifey, Noele and Mark playing it safe

Ed’s Tip: I would recommend leaning on the side of caution and taking a nice, leisure pace. Sure, you’re excited to be pau and want to get going sooner than later, but if you run down the stairs, your momentum will really take you and it becomes difficult to stop.

Before long, we’re already at the halfway point of the bridge (dun-dun-DUN!). The ladies decided to “cheat” and take the side path. 8)

The side path around the bridge
The side path around the bridge

Mark shows us how we manly men roll.

Mark coming down over the bridge on the Koko Head trail
Mark coming down over the bridge on the Koko Head trail

Several hundred, quick steps later…

Almost at the bottom!
Almost at the bottom!

… we approach the end.

Mark celebrates with his Heisman pose
Mark celebrates with his Heisman pose

Back on solid ground, we find a shady area to catch our breath again.

Noele, myself and wifey catching our breath (and blowing our noses) at the bottom of Koko Head trail
Noele, myself and wifey catching our breath (and blowing our noses) at the bottom of Koko Head trail

Some deal with it better than others…

Mark and Noele wondering what the heck just happened
Mark and Noele wondering what the heck just happened

Once recovered, we did what any other akamai local does after a workout to refresh: Shave Ice! Good thing Kokonuts Shave Ice & Snacks (the one that Barack Obama made famous) is at nearby Koko Marina Shopping Center.

Kokonuts Shave Ice & Snacks sign
Kokonuts Shave Ice & Snacks sign

Best buds Noele and wifey are all smiles in anticipation of their shave ice.
Best buds Noele and wifey are all smiles in anticipation of their shave ice.

Mark and Noele literally attacking their shave ice
Mark and Noele literally attacking their shave ice

My work of art before it got destroyed
My work of art before it got destroyed

“What a refreshing way to end our day of stairwell hell!”

If you didn’t notice, that right there, was a sweet tweet. 8)

Ship’s Ahoy! – Experiencing an Alaskan Cruise for the Very First Time – Part III

November 1, 2009

Part I | Part II | Part III | Part IV

Ahhh, day 5. We’re more than halfway through our Alaskan adventure, but there’s still so much more to see and do. In this Part 3, we’ll be visiting Sitka, eating dinner at Pinnacle Grill, taking in a show, and fattening up at the Dessert Extravaganza.

Our boat docked near Sitka at about 8AM. I say “near” because unlike our other stops, disembarking would not be quite as easy. A bit of planning was necessary as we had to catch what was referred to as a tender, which was basically a small boat that took us to the shores of Sitka in style.

Animation of catching the tender off of our cruise ship to Sitka
Animation of catching the tender off of our cruise ship to Sitka

According to our newsletter, Sitka is known as “Alaska’s Little Russia,” even though at a glance, not much about the port looks Russian. Its most treasured asset, however, is its natural scenery and many people consider Sitka to be Alaska’s most beautiful seaside town.

Wifey and I slept in and got a bit of a late start so we didn’t really a lot of time in Sitka (last tender left from shore back to the ship at 4:30PM). We were able to catch some of the highlights of the town though, like…

Baranof Castle Hill

Baranof Castle Hill sign
Baranof Castle Hill sign

Steps leading up to Castle Hill (with some goon in the background)
Steps leading up to Castle Hill (with some goon in the background)

Scene from atop Baranof Castle Hill
Scene from atop Baranof Castle Hill

Sign stating Baranof Castle Hill is a Registered National Historic Landmark
Sign stating Baranof Castle Hill is a Registered National Historic Landmark

Totem Square…

Totem in Totem Square
Totem in Totem Square

Intersection near Totem Square
Intersection near Totem Square

The Sitka Pioneers Home

View of the Sitka Pioneers Home from Totem Square [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
View of the Sitka Pioneers Home from Totem Square [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

The Prospector Statue in front of the Pioneers Home [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
The Prospector Statue in front of the Pioneers Home [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

The Prospector Statue sign [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
The Prospector Statue sign [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

The Sitka Pioneers Home [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
The Sitka Pioneers Home [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

And various other sights around town…

View of Sitka town (and St. Michael's Cathedral) from Lincoln Street [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
View of Sitka town (and St. Michael’s Cathedral) from Lincoln Street [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Interesting Sitka wear. Insert funny comment here.
Interesting Sitka wear. Insert funny comment here.

Wifey getting mauled, er petted by big bear.
Wifey getting mauled, er petted by big bear.

Alaska's own.
Alaska’s own.

Backside of St. Michael's Cathedral
Backside of St. Michael’s Cathedral

The Hanlon-Osbakken House (with the Sitka Rose Gallery and the Winterson Soap Company) [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
The Hanlon-Osbakken House (with the Sitka Rose Gallery and the Winterson Soap Company) [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

Russian Bishop's House, Sitka, Alaska
Russian Bishop’s House, Sitka, Alaska

St. Gregory Catholic Church, Sitka, Alaska
St. Gregory Catholic Church, Sitka, Alaska

Eventually, we met up with the rest of the fam, following their tour of the Alaskan Raptor Rehabilitation Center…

Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center Sign [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]
Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center Sign [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]

Baby Raptor [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Baby Raptor [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Eagle at the Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Eagle at the Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Eagle at the Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Eagle at the Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

… to check out the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium sign [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium sign [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

The hatchery is located inside the Sage Memorial Building on the Sheldon Jackson College campus
The hatchery is located inside the Sage Memorial Building on the Sheldon Jackson College campus

Inside the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium
Inside the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

Evan, Travis and Chris getting hands-on with the sea life [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Evan, Travis and Chris getting hands-on with the sea life [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]


Chris really getting up close and personal

Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium
Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium
Miscellaneous sea life at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

Crab at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]
Crab at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]

Face to face with a fish at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium
Face to face with a fish at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

Shopping Cart and Bicycle pulled in from Sitka's Harbor
Shopping Cart and Bicycle pulled in from Sitka’s Harbor

The hatchery on the backside of the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium
The hatchery on the backside of the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery and Aquarium

One of the tanks at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery. Notice the widdle fishies swimming around with the toy gator?
One of the tanks at the Sheldon Jackson College Hatchery. Notice the widdle fishies swimming around with the toy gator?

… and cruise the rest of town…

Leaving the Sheldon Jackson College campus
Leaving the Sheldon Jackson College campus

Wifey reliving her hanabata days
Wifey reliving her hanabata days

Kerri-Ann, Evan, Lee and Travis having a blast on the 4-way seesaw. Poor Kerri-Ann! :)
Kerri-Ann, Evan, Lee and Travis having a blast on the 4-way seesaw. Poor Kerri-Ann! 🙂

Tree planted for George Washington
Tree planted for George Washington

Chris on the whale statue [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]
Chris on the whale statue [Photo Credit: Andi Kubota]

Wifey next to the sea lion statue
Wifey next to the sea lion statue

Yours truly riding the dolphin statue. Tell me again who's the most mature? :P
Yours truly riding the dolphin statue. Tell me again who’s the most mature? 😛

Dad Kojima and Grandma Kojima taking in Crescent Harbor [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
Dad Kojima and Grandma Kojima taking in Crescent Harbor [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

Crescent Harbor, Sitka, Alaska. [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]
Crescent Harbor, Sitka, Alaska. [Photo Credit: Mom Kojima]

The crowd forming around the Reindeer Red Hot stand. Yep, Reindeer Hot Dogs!
The crowd forming around the Reindeer Red Hot stand. Yep, Reindeer Hot Dogs!

Perusing a gift shop for possible omiyage
Perusing a gift shop for possible omiyage

View of Sitka Hotel from The Sitka Pioneers Home lawn
View of Sitka Hotel from The Sitka Pioneers Home lawn

… before heading back to the ship for din-din.

We took a break from the norm and decided to splurge on dinner that night. Skipping the “included-in-the-price” Vista Dining Room, we dressed up and hit up Pinnacle Grill for an extra $20 per person. Still not bad for a change of scenery.

Pinnacle Ocean Platter - Carpaccio of lightly smoked salmon, accompanied with hot smoked salmon, sea scallops and wasabi cream. I think they replaced some items on this one.
Pinnacle Ocean Platter – Carpaccio of lightly smoked salmon, accompanied with hot smoked salmon, sea scallops and wasabi cream. I think they replaced some items on this one.

Lobster Bisque - Crème fraiche and aged sherry.
Lobster Bisque – Crème fraiche and aged sherry.

Dungeness Crab Cakes - Spiral shaved cucumber and sweet chili-mustard sauce
Dungeness Crab Cakes – Spiral shaved cucumber and sweet chili-mustard sauce

Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail - Brandy horseradish cocktail sauce
Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail – Brandy horseradish cocktail sauce

(Broiled or) Poached Lobster Tail - On a bed of wilted spinach and argula, with mustard seed and "mangochurri" pesto sauce or melted butter
(Broiled or) Poached Lobster Tail – On a bed of wilted spinach and argula, with mustard seed and “mangochurri” pesto sauce or melted butter

Warm Grand Marnier Chocolate Volcano Cake - The ultimate chocolate experience
Warm Grand Marnier Chocolate Volcano Cake – The ultimate chocolate experience

Pinnacle Crème Brulee - Flavors of chocolate, coffee and vanilla bean
Pinnacle Crème Brulee – Flavors of chocolate, coffee and vanilla bean

The fam during din-din [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]
The fam during din-din [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]

Ed’s Tip: Eating at the Vista Dining Room requires seating at specific times and is often crowded. If you’d like to avoid the crowds and try some of the ship’s varying dining choices, opt to pay the extra money and treat yourself to some yummy kine grindz once in a while. Sure beats the repetition.

Following dinner, we caught a show. Yeah, they actually have mini-Broadway type shows. I was surprised too! On this night, we watched what was called “Showtime: Stage & Screen” and it starred some of the ship’s talented singers and dancers.

The brother-in-law’s sole photo below is the only evidence we have. LOL!

Showtime: Stage & Screen - starring the Westerdam Singers and Dancers [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]
Showtime: Stage & Screen – starring the Westerdam Singers and Dancers [Photo Credit: Lee Kojima]

With a well-rested tummy, we headed straight to the Lido Deck for an event they were billing as a “Dessert Extravaganza.” Talk about setting a precedent for themselves. But, even for a non-sweet-toothed person like myself, they definitely lived up to the hype.

Dessert Extravaganza on the Lido Deck
Dessert Extravaganza on the Lido Deck

Various Cakes and pies at the Dessert Extravaganza
Various Cakes and pies at the Dessert Extravaganza

Fruit carvings at the Dessert Extravaganza
Fruit carvings at the Dessert Extravaganza

Display at Dessert Extravaganza
Display at Dessert Extravaganza

White chocolate fountain with a dragon ice sculpture in the background at the Dessert Extravaganza
White chocolate fountain with a dragon ice sculpture in the background at the Dessert Extravaganza

Ed’s Tip: Bring your camera. Scheduled for a 10:30PM release, they actually opened it up for photo opportunities at 10PM. Those dessert chefs did amazing work.

Aww, is that really the end of day 5? Just a few more short nights on the boat and we’ll be heading home. How sad.

Dat’s a-ight. Tomorrow, we’ve got an exciting Ziplining adventure in Ketchikan lined up to start off our day. Should be fun! See you in the next (and final?) part in the Alaska series. Shoots!

Part I | Part II | Part III | Part IV