Waipi’o Valley

Although no one’s read it yet, anyone who gets their hands on my current manuscript is going to know immediately that I’m madly in love with the Big Island. We lived there for two years and figure that, whenever we settle down, it’ll be back there. Neither of us have ever felt that kind of connection with a place before.

The downside to setting a book there (besides that fact that draft 0 was more ‘love story to the island’ than ‘murder mystery’) is that my memory is made of old sponge. It’ll hold information for exactly as long as its relevant, but no longer. What was my first address? Dunno. How do you find the median? Not a clue.

So I’m doing a lot of research.  And parts of that research won’t make it into the book, no matter how much I wish they could.

For instance: the mysterious Waipi’o Tea House.

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Moving

By this time on Saturday, I will be in Maryland.  Yup, shortly after the most recent Storm of the Century, Kevin and I are moving to a snow-buried house in the Mid-Atlantic.

I’ve been experiencing a lot of emotions in relation to this move- sadness over leaving my favorite place we’ve ever lived, stress from the nature of packing and shipping a household 5,000 miles, anxiety over the hours and hours of flying we’re undertaking, and uncertainty about what awaits us on the other side of those flights, just to name a few.  I’m also a little worried about how we’re going to survive til spring, given that the warmest clothing either of us owns is a hoodie.

Having spent nearly two years inHawaii, it’s hard to imagine living on the mainland again. Even reminding myself of all the positives- we’re going to have friends again! We’re going to get a dog! – isn’t doing much to dispell my nerves.

While I’m packing, you all should leave comments reminding me why living on the east coast is great. What’s your favorite thing to do? What makes it more fun than island life?

The Perks of Living in Hawaii

I was going to talk about anxiety last week, but since i forgot to post and I don’t feel like doing that topic anymore, we’re going to talk about how lucky I am and how smug I am about living on the island of Hawaii.

Before our wedding two years ago, Kevin and I knew that we wanted to move somewhere new.  Because we dream big, we eyed a couple places outside the country- Italy and Scotland predominately.  Unfortunately, his work said we had to stay in the country, so that scrapped that plan.  Then one day, while I was doing something wedding related (probably folding flowers for our favors) I watched the movie Lilo and Stitch.  And it hit me.  Technically, this scene was what got me.  And that was it.

About six months after the wedding, we moved to Hawaii.

There are some downsides to living here- just look at our electricity expenses.  And basically everything we eat gets shipped over from the mainland, so if you’re planning on visiting make sure you take that “everything costs 1/3rd more here” seriously.

But there’s plenty to make up for that.

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See that blue line past the rocks?  That’s Maui.  You can see another landmass from my landmass.  How cool is that?

I’m not a particularly outdoorsy person, which on first glance seems like a problem for someone living somewhere that outdoors is kind of the only thing to do.  But what you fail to account for is my neighbor Ann.

Ann is very good at adventures.  She’s even better at sharing them.  Basically she’s that friend that you want to have who pops into your life and says “Hey, I saw this really cool thing.  Come on, we’re going to explore it.”

This weekend she took me to Kua Bay.  I don’t know why it’s called that, the beach’s real name is Manini’owali Beach.  It used to be 4-wheel accessible only but the government came in a couple years ago and paved the road down, so it’s available to Nervous Nellies like me.

Despite the signage on the path down to the water, Kua isn’t particularly dangerous in warm weather.  (In the winter, just about all the beaches here are dangerous.)  The sand is white and warm and the water is so clear that even when you can’t touch the bottom any more you can still see the ripples on the sandy bottom.

And splashing around out there, disturbing a turtle and the ubiquitous Yellow Tang, is how I got to spend my Saturday morning.  How great is that?

P.S.  My manuscript’s total word count this week was 48,071.