Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Paradise



"I can't stop thinking about Hawaii", I told my son-in-law a month ago.  "Oh you'll be thinking about it a lot more when you come back", he warned...

I've been missing a special place that I recently visited.  For more than two weeks I have been in Hawaii.  I never thought I would have the chance to visit this part of the world and yet, I never thought I would love it so much either.  Hawaii is very beautiful with a lovely aesthetic that is partially ancient lore and partially post-war beauty.  And unlike New England's crisp nautical sun, Hawaii's light is far-reaching and golden.

The picture above is one that I took on the Ke'anae Peninsula on the Road to Hana.  I almost wept at the breathtaking beauty and felt a deep connection to the inlet which I later read was the site of a devastating tsunami in 1946.  I sensed it was hallowed and snapped quite a number of pictures like this one with my cell phone.  There was an old church left standing and like all churches in Hawaii, the doors were wide open to anybody that happened to pass by.

In addition to the famous Road to Hana, we visited the Black Sand Beach where black-as-night lava rocks cover the shore.  We toured the volcanoes on The Big Island, careful not to take anything that wasn't ours so as not to anger Pele, the mythical Goddess of Volcanoes.  We ate fish and passion fruit, wore flowers in our hair, and shopped in small boutiques in Maui's Up Country.  And every afternoon, we raced to the shore to sit huddled in matching weathered chairs to let the Trade Winds wash over us and blow our cares out to sea.

My companions were my daughter and my son-in-law and the only mar on our adventure were the three days my daughter was ill.  On the plane to The Big Island, my only child became sick with a high fever and chills.  She also had an extreme headache that frightened me.  Upon landing, we took her to the hospital were she was admitted.  For three days, we sat by her side as fluids and antibiotics were drained into her.  And although the environs surrounding the hospital were gorgeous, the landscape lost its sparkle.  Thankfully, before too long, we were back to our vacation and all the gifts the islands had to offer.

Now I am home with a volcanic suitcase on the living room floor exploding with clothes to be washed, presents to distribute, and plenty of keepsakes, including the journal I kept on our trip.  I am missing paradise and reliving all the wonderful things we experienced and as my son-in-law predicted, I am thinking about Hawaii alot.   Of course, as I reminisce, my thoughts also race back to those three days I was frantic with worry for my daughter - those recollections are woven into the tapestry of my journey too.  When the memories come, I lean in and let them wash over me just as the winds did on the edge of Hawaii's magnificent shores.  And it is then that I realize...True Paradise is when loved ones are healthy...

~


PS:  If you have ever visited the magical isles of Hawaii, I would love to hear about it.

9 comments:

  1. Hi Donna!
    We visited Hawaii after we visited LA twice, Las Vegas, and San Francisco (from Australia). We enjoyed all cities immensely. Hawaii was our last stop and it was truly beautiful and relaxing. We did some super shopping in Waikiki, saw the touching Pearl Harbor, did a private tour of the powerful Missouri battle ship, went to our first luau with great food, dancers and entertainers, walked along the beautiful beaches, heard wonderful Hawaiian music and and did a round trip around the island on a helicopter - fantastic and would do it all again. The people were lovely, too.

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    1. Twelve Riches, what a comprehensive exploration! Sounds wonderful and yes, yes, yes...the people they ARE lovely...just lovely! I appreciate you comment and insights so much...It's all I can think about right now!

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    2. Oh, you darling. You sound like you are suffering from "holiday withdrawal"...not wanting it to end, 'cos you had such a wonderful time...There's always next time. Great memories!

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  2. Another beautiful piece. Hawaii is magic. xoxo

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  3. I loved reading your post about being in Hawaii. It's not a place that I had dreamed of visiting, but when our son was stationed there for several years, it make sense to take advantage of the opportunity to see Oahu. It was more beautiful than I could have imagined, and the experience made wonderful memories. Having our son as a tour guide made it much easier to decide what to see and do, and I hope someday to visit some of the other islands.
    Kind regards and thanks for your lovely post.
    Paula

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  4. Welcome back Donna! What a wonderful and special (find 100 ways) trip. Poor daughter, how thankful you must have been when she recovered. How absolutely scary for you all.

    I'm embarrassed, and must apologize, that I jumped happily to the conclusion that you are engaged to "the boy from the past" (aren't you?) and that you were going to be married and go on your honeymoon! I was positive, hence my congratulations. Red face. :-D

    I think you've found your inner Island Girl! You're a natural. I have one too; she's like other women's inner French Girls, but she's about all things South Pacific. She is always scented with monoi tiare from Tahiti; she wears island patterned house dresses with bare feet; she thrives in heat; she wears plumeria in her hair. Oh, and the music! I've been so lucky to have been in Hawaii many times in my life. My parents met on a blind date under the banyan at the Moana Hotel in Waikiki.

    Tell us more about your experiences please, and thank you for sharing your life with us so generously.

    Erina

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    1. Erina, thank you so much for your wonderful comment! I love how you describe your South Pacific self. I've been haunted by memories of Hawaii all summer and I think it may be why I can't let go of this season. How remarkable about your parents' meeting. Patterned house dresses? I love it! I cannot wait to return there. Who would have thought that a New England yankee woman would love such a place. Thank you for understanding so succinctly and thank you for reading my blog!

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  5. I've. Never been to such a paradise, Donna, but your wonderful words have brought it to life for me! Thanks for sharing your beaiputiful words....aloha!! XO

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