On Saturday October 12, 2013 we all went to Pearl Harbor.
The only reason we even stayed on Oahu was to be able to wake up early to see Pearl Harbor and specifically the USS Arizona Memorial. Of course due to the government shutdown it was closed. However, the USS Missouri was still open for tours and you could still see the Arizona from the pier. We all agreed to do the tour of the Missouri and just see what we could see of the Arizona.
Being inside the ship was like a maze. I couldn’t imagine trying to get out while under attack. It gave me a better sense of what happened that day and the sacrifices that were made. Seeing war ships on TV or in books doesn’t give you a very good reference to scale either. They can tell you how many tons a single gun weighs but it means nothing until you see it up close. Just the engineering behind all these parts working together to make the ship function was amazing to see.
I’m really glad we did the tour because I learned quite a lot and I had never been on a ship like that before. We got to stand exactly where they ended WWII when Japan surrendered. I think we would have missed out on a lot had we not visited the Missouri.
The closest we got to the Arizona Memorial was pier that is normally closed. They opened it up so people like us who traveled all this way could see it and be close enough for some pictures. They also had a woman who talked about what happened that day that was free to anyone who wanted to listen. It was better than nothing and I got some cool pictures. The boys really enjoyed the whole experience. Joe made sure to point out all the fire related equipment and I even got a picture of a fire truck on base. All in all it was definitely worth the detour to Oahu!
After Pearl Harbor we headed straight to the airport to drop of the rental car and got on a plane to Kauai!