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Chilling in a Fierce Land
part one of this year's island adventure
Aloha! You might notice that I changed the name of this newsletter, what do you think? Last week I pulled one of my “collage cards”—4” x 6” cards that I’ve made over the years from magazine cuttings. I let intuition guide me in their creation, and sometimes in the morning, after meditation, I pull one for inspiration or for a reminder for the day. Last week’s card said “write your mind.” And I thought, well, heck yeah, that makes sense. So here we are.
Here's this week’s update, LET’S GO
Chilling in a Fierce Land
I arrived on Oahu the day the fires started on Maui. It was one of the weirdest landings I’ve ever experienced, due to the wind, and that wind was relentless for the first three days of my stay. But of course a little wind and smoke here is nothing compared to what happened on Maui.
You can go read about the fires and what’s happening elsewhere in the islands, and maybe even donate if you like, to those residents who lost everything. I hope the state of Hawaii can upgrade and update their emergency systems soon, because thanks to climate change, the environment in these islands is changing, and more fires could be imminent.
The fires have dampened my trip a little. (I think I’d be an insensitive idiot if they didn’t.) But I’m still having a good time. The first few days were spent with my friends Mary and her husband Roy, who used to live in Tulsa but had the gall to retire and move back home to Wisconsin a few years ago. Jerks! Just kidding Mary, love ya. They were enjoying the last few days of a six-month stay on Ohau (for work). We had fun driving around the island, visiting some incredible beaches, and having the best fish tacos I’ve ever eaten. Then they deposited me here, on the balcony of my oldest and dearest friends, Dayl. And I plan to sit on my butt on this balcony for the next month. Well, that’s not true. I do have to walk the dog while Dayl and her husband are in Greece, and maybe I’ll go to the pool a few times. And there are those fish tacos in Waimanalo…
But I’m working while I’m here. And while I work, I’m appreciating the beautiful view from my “office.” It never, ever, ever, gets old.
Thanks to the movement of the sun and the constantly shifting cloud cover, the terrain never looks the same twice. Every time I look up, I see something new. The water constantly changes color and texture, and the mountains seem to shift and move. With a steady, gentle breeze coming off the water, it never gets too warm (although it is incredibly humid).
It’s a little noisy today, thanks to some sort of road construction at the bottom of the hill, and there must be some serious exercises happening over at the Marine Corps base, if the sound of the Ospreys and other large aircraft is any indication. In the mornings, I wake up to the sound of the cattle egrets leaving their sleeping perches and heading inland at dawn, but that is a kind of noise I can be happy about.
It’s peaceful here. In fact, I’ve only experienced this type of contentment a few times in my life. The vibe is chill, everything is mild. Except for when it isn’t.
The huge, jagged mountains are menacing AF, if you look closely. They will kick your ass, given half a chance. In the early days of Hawaiian history, before America came in and stole everything, Hawaiian royalty was buried up in the mountains. Someone was chosen to haul the royal remains, along with maybe the deceased’s favorite canoe, up the side of the mountain, deposit everything in a cave or crevice, and then seal the deal by jumping to their death.
And let’s not forget how the mountains were formed—by powerful, violent volcanic eruptions. Add in hurricanes, tsunamis, and tribal wars, and you’ve got a violent past. This place is fierce.
What a juxtaposition!
While I love this place and I’m enjoying the heck out of the view, weather, company, food, and vibe, I try to never forget that this place can kick my butt in a heartbeat. Respect.
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