Presenting the birthday
celebrations of our classmates
who have reached a big milestone in their
Hugh Prichard kicks off this page with a
doozy of a story.
Sue and Hugh in Hawaii
For my birthday, February 27, I decided
to surf the gentle waves of Waikiki. Upon our arrival in Honolulu, the airport shut down for awhile. A Burger King had gone
up in Flames, which seemed kind of appropriate. The Hawaiian disaster remedy is, 'Sit 'em down and geeve 'em guava juice'.
After several rounds of guava juice, the fun was over and so was the fire. We picked up our ukuleles and moved on.
We had survived Disaster One.
The morning of my birthday,
we arose in the beautifully-restored Royal Hawaiian, right on the beach. Made a little coffee, turned on my laptop and received
a friend's e-mail that a monstrous tsunami was racing toward us.
A short while later, the sirens went off, the hotel's alarms went off and all hell broke loose. Not
really. The interesting thing about a tsunami is the timing. We were going to die, but we had four hours to get ready! It
was a calm and beautiful morning in Hawaii. I wouldn't be able to surf, but we could have a nice breakfast and talk about
our lives together.
The hotel's plan was to do a "vertical evacuation". This meant going up to the 30th
floor of the nearby Sheraton and waiting with a few thousand other anxious, sweaty people. No thanks, we saw that movie. Instead,
we put on our backpacks and hiked up Diamond Head.
Five hours later, we hiked
back down, after watching the water slosh around a bit on the reef below. We returned to an eerily deserted Waikiki, in which
you could get no food and, tragically, no beer for several hours. By dark, things returned to near normal and the Mai-Tais
survived Disaster Two.
Bonus: T-shirts were immediately on sale.
"I survived the Tsunami, February 27."
My birthday T-shirt!
Hugh in the Middle of the Wave
On to Kauai, where I had a week of the best bodysurfing
of my life. I was truly ecstatic much of the time because to me, the most exhilarating feeling in the world is to be zooming
across a wave.
Then came the "last wave of the day". Disaster Three.
It was probably the scariest event of my life--a life which
has seen many broken bones and other mayhem. While body-surfing some big waves, I hit a rock underwater and my head sounded
like a coconut smashing on a rock. I surfaced, put my finger in the hole and thought I had fractured my skull.
Luckily, I stayed conscious, yelled for help from nearby surfers,
and they dragged me in. My, the whitewater was red with blood... The ensuing drama with first responders, lifeguards, and
finally paramedics is too long to tell. (Although very well executed.) We returned home, a bit concussive, but very
happy to be alive.
As you all know,
Disasters come in Threes, so I'm done with them.
Hugh's new Fashion Accessory
The Mid-60's Club Page 2
The Mid-60's Club Page 3
Music: "Happy Birthday"