P-MAN XIII Update #12 - Derek arrives - the sequel

16 March

Hello all! The journey begins!

After losing an hour of sleep to daylight saving time on Saturday night/Sunday morning I woke up a little after 5AM to drive to the local Safari Park just North of San Diego to run their inaugural half marathon. I managed to survive that and come home for my final bit of packing. Weighed both my bags to within the 50lbs limit, barely, and then it was off to LA for the night.

My girlfriend dropped me off at the international terminal at LAX before I realized that my first leg was to Hawaii, so I was flying out of a completely different terminal. Made the quick walk across LAX to the Continental gate where there was no line. Only one disgruntle employee at the counter, so I was able to get rid of my 100 lbs of luggage rather quickly. Luck was on my side, no line at the security gate either. My flights from LA to Koror were relatively uneventful. I was a little late at each airport, but just enough to make me run to catch my last leg from Guam to Koror. I was the first in line at immigration and customs and my ride was waiting for me once I left customs. Couldn’t ask for much more.

Once I got to the hotel I wasn’t really tired so I ventured over to Kramer’s for an evening spirit before getting some sleep for the evening.

It seems as though my adjustment to the new time zone went well. I woke up around 8:00 ready to start the day. After a nice breakfast, I started the prep work. I was able to pick up the van we will be using without much incident. This van, like other vehicles that we in BentProp have used in the past, has a lot of “character.” It’s an automatic but if you put it in “D” it won’t go, so you have to start in “2” and once you get some speed built up, you can shift to “D.” Other than that there aren’t too many red lights lit in the dash.
Then I went to touch base with NECO Marine to pick up a bag the Dan had shipped to Palau and to order some water. The water here is not potable, so we keep gallons of it handy for coffee and brushing teeth, oh and hydrating. In the mean time, I was able to get a hold of our master guide, Joe. Joe was working for the day and tomorrow, so we agreed to get together on Friday when we need to coordinate with a number of Palauan leaders.

After getting Dan’s bag back to the room, it was off to visit the “new” Bem Ermii” for lunch. Bem Ermii is to Palau as In’N’Out is to California. Traditionally, Bem Ermii has been in a small trailer, but since last year they built a building that they work out of. Despite the new location and structure, the food is just as good. After devouring my bacon cheeseburger and strawberry shake, I got some grocery shopping done.


Bem Ermii - Old


Bem Ermii - New

On the way back from Ben Franklin, I noticed that they have a huge sign advertising the Palau Marathon. My plan is to register for the half-marathon tomorrow and then try to convince other BentProppers to run it with me. Once, I got back to the hotel and drug all the groceries to the room, I was finally able to unpack my bags and see if I forgot anything else. For now, it looks as though I have all the stuff I need.

Lastly, the local Palauan internet company came by to deliver a modem for our internet. I was able to plug into it and get internet, but have yet to figure out how to get our wireless router to work. I’ll blame it on jet lag.

As the sun went down I walked over to Kramer’s again for dinner. Can’t beat the sashimi in Palau! Great end to the day, as I enjoyed the cool breeze off the water and overhearing diving stories from others sitting around the place. I was invited to come back tomorrow for the St Patrick’s Day dinner of corn beef. Can’t really think of a better place to celebrate the holiday! Should be an interesting first experience in Palau for Casey after he arrives tomorrow night.

Semper Fi

Derek