We have been home from our Hawaiian holiday for one week. I am back to work and going through the usual paces, but every now and again I take a mental leap back to the beautiful island of Kauai.
When the wedding couple came to us last fall stating they wanted their parents and siblings to join them, sharing one big historic farm-house on Hanalei Bay for eight days, I wondered just how that was going to work out. All of us together? Ten adults and four children ages seven, five, three and one? One house you say? Eight days?
Could we really all step away from our daily roles and responsibilities without too many pretzel-like twists? Or would we simply decide the pretzel-like twists were worth it?
I take my responsibilities very seriously. Maybe a little too seriously, I’m thinking now that I’ve had a delicious dose of island time.
I certainly had an opportunity to catch an unflattering glimpse of my distinctly “NOT Hawaiian” temperament while visiting a Costco not long after arrival. We swooped in to purchase some food and supplies to take back to the house–remember now, ten adults and four children, that’s a lot of supplies–and working from lists we’d prepared from home, we made it through the store with efficiency. That is until we got into the line.
I felt a surge of impatience with a check-out hiccup. An item didn’t scan properly and instead of just replacing the item with another, the original was handed to someone else to look up the appropriate scanning codes and issue a whole new label. This seemed irritatingly inefficient to me. The line grew longer behind me and my party was also waiting on me to get everything to the car. The Costco employees weren’t the least bit flustered and definitely not in a hurry. That was my first reminder that we were not in Los Angeles. Welcome to Island Time.
And welcome it was.
From the moment we left the airport our drought-tolerant senses were bombarded with the luxury of green. Flowers and foliage familiar to me in Southern California were easily fifty times the size.I have thousands of photos to prove it. Raise your hand if you want to see them ALL…I seriously couldn’t stop myself.
We’ve previously visited Hawaii, but this was our first time on Kauai and we shared a nearly private beach on Hanalei Bay. It was quite magical. Unless we can travel again as a large pack, I doubt we will personally have this kind of experience again, but saying that something was once in a lifetime is pretty great, too.
I am far from ready to jump back into the pace that I kept prior to our beautiful island experience. And there’s been a wedding that brings me great joy with many happy memories I want to fully savor.
A part of living in Southern California is learning how to stay with the flow of traffic–literally and figuratively– or you’re run over, and the “flow” here is rapid-paced and often aggressive.
It’s hard to go very far without stress in many forms lurking about the perimeter of our lives, but at least for now, I have refused to meet its eye.
Whenever I choose I can call back the feeling of refreshment and bring back a little of the island’s warmth, charm and tranquility. That will always help me to breathe lighter.