Kauai, Hawaii * Photography by Dennis Phan 家墉





I brought my family to Kauai for a 9-day vacation during the last week of August. It was a fun vacation with a lot of sun bathing, ocean swimming and snorkeling.


When I first arrived at Lihue Airport in Kauai, I immediately felt the tropical weather on the island which is very similar to the weather in my home town Nhatrang, Vietnam.


After checking in our condominium unit, we found out we had a free up grade to an ocean front unit. We gladly accepted the offer. Our unit is about 30 feet from the ocean. The management is kind enough to form a half circle using the coral to make a safe swimming area for the kids. From the balcony of our unit, I can feel the salty smell of the ocean. It is hard to pass out an opportunity to swim in the calm sea so we all jumped in the ocean for a short swim before our first dinner on the island.


During our 9-day stay in Kauai, we mainly went to different beaches to explore. The relatively calm ocean and cool sea water make Kauai a perfect island for swimming and snorkeling. In my opinion, Kee, Lydgate and Poipu beaches are ideal for snorkeling. The good thing about snorkeling in Kauai is we do not have to pay and it is less crowded compare to Hanuma Bay on Oahu Island. The snorkeling beaches in Kauai are on a smaller scale compared to Hanuma Bay but we can still see colorful tropical fishes swimming around us. There are plenty of trees on the beach making beach umbrella unnecessary. We also visited Anini Beach which is ideal for swimming. The beach is very shallow and calm making it looks like a giant sea water swimming pool.


When I was swimming and snorkeling in Kauai, I found back the feeling I thought I lost forever after leaving Nhatrang in late 1970s. The tropical weather, the coconut trees, and the sound of the ocean waves made me think I was in Nhatrang for a moment.


I had the luxury of visiting a land full of tropical fruit trees courtesy of a local friend. We tasted star fruit (tri khế); drank coconut juice from coconuts fresh picked from the tree; tasted mng cầu xim; tri ma (tri trứng g); lyche; chm ruột; and papaya. I almost forgot the shape of tri chm ruột until I saw it again in this vacation.


During our last day on Kauai, we tried the Luau dinner on the Smiths family plantation. It was a good dinner and the show was not bad either. My kids had a good time with the buffet dinner. Surprisingly, they enjoyed the dancing show as much as we did.


When I was vacationing in Kauai, I monitored my positions for fun thanks to my nieces lap top computer. Before I took off for Kauai, I sold covered calls against all of the stocks I currently own. I also sold several conservative naked put positions with attractive premiums due to their relatively high volatility. With my trading positions set up, I did not need to do any trade during my vacation. I noticed one interesting thing: The market closes at 10: 00 A.M. in Hawaii because Hawaiian Time is 6 hours behind Eastern Time. If I trade in Hawaii, I will be off at 10:00 A.M. and I will have the rest of the day for swimming and snorkeling.

Retiring and trading in Hawaii is an interesting thought, a very, very interesting thought.




Dennis Phan 家墉

Khai Minh, UCLA & Investools Alumni

Los Angeles, California, U.S.A., 03 September 2007







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