After landing, I spent the morning settling down, and walking around in a jet-lagged state. Note to self, don't drink coffee for dinner at Narita airport before boarding my connecting flight.
Clearing customs was a pain, because their computers were acting up, causing delays, and I had some issues with my passport.
Here's a tip for those of you who want to go the US. If you have ever lost your Singapore passport, and it was replaced prior to the new biometric passport, please please please go and make a new biometric passport. This is because in the old days, if you lost your passport, and ICA issued you a new one, it was still the same passport number (usually your IC). This raises red flags at US Customs and you will have to go to the little black room and explain it, every single time. Happened to me last year in San Diego too.
The new biometric passport uses a new number completely, which eliminates this problem. But old passport users like me will be affected.
I assembled my Dahon bike and decided to go out to see the town and look for some food. This is where the hassle of packing a folding bike for my trip pays off. I could go anywhere I wanted from my apartment in the University of Hawaii, Manoa.
I rode to Ala Moana Shopping Center, and had a Jamba Juice there (fancy fruit juice joint). It took me about half an hour to get there because I got a little lost. Second note to self: get a map.
Staying on campus has its advantages. Food is cheaper here because it is meant for students. There was an all-can-eat-cafeteria (US$7.75 for brunch, eat 5 meals and get 1 meal free) about 1.5km away, and a student footcourt nearby.
Waikiki is about 5 to 6km away from where I am, and accessible by public bus (US$2 with one free transfer) called The Bus (a very duh name). You can mount your full-sized bicycle on the rack on front of the bus, and board it.
I haven't been back to Honolulu for more than 20 years now, it looks the same to me. Everyone looks quite laid back here, even in the city.
One thing Singaporeans need to get used to (beside riding/driving on the other side of the road, yikes), is that shops close earlier. It is not easy to get food late at night, not like at home where 24-hour coffee shops are everywhere. Fortunately for me, a Sushiman was open till 10pm and I found it after riding out and trying my luck. I had a bowl of spicy Ahi donburi (Ahi is Yellowtail Tuna). For UD$7, it was a lot of raw Ahi.
After dinner, I rode to the 7-Eleven, loaded up my Ortlieb pannier bags with a map, some bottled water, cold drinks and comfort food, and rode the uphill route back to my dorm, guided by my 2 Fenix L2D flashlights on my handlebar.
Thank goodness I brought a bike with 24 speeds. Hawaii everywhere is slopes and hills.