Written at 8:48am on a Saturday morning (3/22/14) on the island of Kauai:
We arrived on Friday afternoon and were greeted by my Aunt Gaye and my Uncle Bill in a traditional lei greeting at the airport. They wanted to do what my Grandma Marie had always done when family was arriving on the island.
My family has been coming to Kauai on and off for four generations stretching from my grandparents Marie and Neil to my children Anna and Simon.
We come to relax. To warm up. To soak it in. To honeymoon. To be alone. To recover. To forgive. To renew. To be together. To celebrate.
My grandparents acquired a timeshare at the Mokihana of Kauai over 40 years ago. I first came here with my Mom and Grandma when I was a child probably around age 8-10 (need to look that up). Since then I’ve returned five more times (again with my Mom and Grandma when I was in high school, on my honeymoon with Chris, with a group of friends, with my kids and my parents after Christmas in December 2012/January 2013).
And now with Aaron.
This will be the last visit to the Mokihana as it’s been sold to new owners and the timeshare my Grandparents first started is ending. It probably won't be my last trip to Kauai.
I feel very much at home here. For the last few years my parents have come for multiple weeks (usually a month or so I think). They lounge and drive around and go to farmer's markets and make friends with their neighbors and make delicious fruity drinks.
It’s a modest little place. Single room. Two twin beds that lovers push together to make one larger bed. Small kitchenette. No tv (except in a community room or if you bring one along – my parents ending up purchasing one on their longer stays and stored it in a storage locker). Minimal internet access. Small dining table with three chairs. Two plastic chairs and a small plastic table on the balcony. There’s a drawer unit and shelf for your clothes and other essentials.
Our shelf is currently holding my camera and a bottle of rum and a bottle of vodka, two boxes of cereal, a container of salted peanuts, a bag of tortilla chips, and a loaf of Dave’s bread.
Everyday at 5pm someone in the complex blows into a conch shell to announce the beginning of happy hour.
We sleep with the sliding door open and are lulled to sleep by the sound of the ever-present trade winds in Kapaa. Morning is signaled by the really, really loud roosters. It’s not always sunny here and rain is usually a part of the day. The rain makes it very lush and green and most days feature a mix of sun and rain. Always partly cloudy or partly sunny, depending on your perspective.
This island is etched into so many crevices of my mind and heart.
I remember going on a whale watching boat trip along the NaPali coast when I came with my Mom one time. I sat near the front of the boat and experienced that really expressive laughter and joy explode out of me as we rode the waves and the boat crashed down on top of them.
On my last trip here, with my kids, I won’t ever forget watching Simon’s determination to body board. He had joy spilling out of him when he was able to ride a wave.
This time the trip was really about relaxation and being on our own together. The pace was wonderfully slow. I loved being able to have drinks and dinner with my Aunt and Uncle and toast my Grandparents and this wonderful gift they passed on to our family. I loved driving around the island and listening to music and eating at little roadside places and talking and listening and growing.
Here's a look at our adventure in photos:
Thanks Grandma & Grandpa for picking this place and for sharing it with your family.