Six Days in Hawaii

I know you guys would probably prefer to hear about my (mis)adventures in Guatemala than about my trip to Hawaii, so I won’t bore you with the details of my middle school reunion or days spent at the beach.  But I’m seriously considering moving back whenever I’m finished with Guatemala, so I figured that it was worth mentioning that I had an amazing time there.  In fact, I very nearly didn’t leave.  If I could have afforded the astronomical rent of my parents’ my condo, I definitely would have stayed.

I know.  Crazy, huh?  Hawaii would seem like the the last place I’d want to live.  It’s the most isolated island chain in the world, for one thing; a five hour flight from California and eight hours from Japan.  It’s literally a tiny rock smack dab in the middle of thousands of miles of water, which doesn’t seem like a fitting location for someone who’s extracurricular activities include roadtrips, hiking, subway rides and oh, frequent air travel.

And Hawaii’s not exactly the best place to live if you’re someone who’s permanently broke or underemployed (yep, that would be me) because it’s ridiculously expensive there.  Everything with the exception of pineapples and sugarcane is imported, which means that even a gallon of milk or jar of peanut butter often costs twice as much as it does on the mainland.

But I don’t know…Hawaii just felt right.  It may sound cheesy, but from the moment I stepped off the plane, it felt like I was home.  Which would make sense, since technically, Honolulu is my hometown.  But I guess it’d been so long since I’d actually called it home (I moved to New York when I was 16), that I just stopped thinking of it that way.  Even now, when people ask me where I’m from, I tell them New York.  It’s where I graduated high school after all, and it’s where I went to college and spent most of my adult life.

In a perfect world, I’d win the lotto and then be able to afford the 2,700 dollar per month rent on my parents’ condo, but I’d settle for landing a job with another airline and a smalish studio near UH.

Wouldn’t it be ironic if, after all of these years of traversing the planet in search of somewhere to call home, I end up back exactly where I started?

Sharaton Waikiki

View from my Family's Waikiki Condo

Reannon Waikiki

Waimanalo Beach

Royal Hawaiian Hotel

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Comments ( 4 )

  1. Jen

    The Waimanalo Beach photo is breath-taking! Wow, $2700 a month?!? Yeah, I knew Hawaii was expensive, but I definitely couldn't afford it either. You can hike there though, no? And you could take lovely ocean-side road trips. :-)

  2. LorraineER

    Hello! I've been following your blog for a little while now, but I usually don't have anything interesting to add so I don't comment. I understand completely what you mean about immediately feeling like you're home when arriving someplace. I used to live in Massachusetts, and came to New Orleans for a visit & after only hours here I knew It was where I belonged. When I went home, I found an apartment online, packed what would fit in my car and drove back! My plan was to move around every couple years after that. I wanted to live in those glorious places people go for vacations and say "Wouldn't it be nice to stay here forever?" I want to shake those people and say that people do in fact live here and you probably could too. In the end, I think moving here immediately was only feasible due to the low cost of living. If it cost as much as Hawaii or NYC it would have slowed me considerable or stopped me altogether. Also, I've been in New Orleans for 8 years now. I would love to travel more and possibly move but my mother relocated here and is in bad health so it may be awhile before I can move on. I love to read about what you're doing though and where you are currently, and I hope someday my life will be filled with adventures even half as interesting as yours!

  3. Re

    Hi Jen - Yeah, the condo is super expensive...even by Hawaii's standards. You can hike in Hawaii, yes. But you're limited in that there's only so many times you can hike the same trails before you want to try something new. But the only way you can do that is if you get in a plane and fly to another island or to the mainland. What I loved about living in the continental US was that you'd never have that problem. You can always just hop in your car and drive a few hours to hike somewhere new. I worry that if I move to Hawaii, I'll miss being able to do that. Even though I rarely drive long distances to go hiking, I like having the option, you know? I worry I'll feel just so STUCK in Hawaii... @ Lorraine Thanks for the comment! Having adventures is over-rated. Right now I feel like I've had my fill of adventures and just want what you have - a permanent residence. I feel this intense desire to settle down, buy some furniture and maybe even a golden retriever and not go ANYWHERE for a few years...But I guess the grass is always greener, huh? You're right about it being tough to relocate to Hawaii. I'm still trying to figure out how I'll make it work...there aren't a lot of jobs there right now and the clock is ticking on my savings (I'm not working while I'm in Guatemala) and am worried that I'll plow through all my money and then NEVER get to Hawaii... But. I guess I'll just have to trust in the Universe a bit. PS I've ALWAYS wanted to go to New Orleans! I think that I would really like it there...it just sounds so fascinating.

  4. LorraineER

    I think you can see my email when I comment, so please add it to your contacts and use it if you decide to come here sometime! I love showing people around. Plus, I've read enough of your blog that you don't feel like a stranger and my fiancee and I would be honored to let you crash with us if you wanted. I've never offered that to anyone I didn't know but we actually just started a couchsurfing profile and are open to hosting, and I know you've done that before so I was hoping I wouldn't freak you out by offering. New Orleans is wonderful any time of year. Summer is unbelievably humid, but if you are used to warm climates maybe it wouldn't bother you. Also, Halloween is very fun. Mardi gras is really amazing, the local celebration does not mirror the imagine of vomit-soaked, body-part flashing Bourbon street that the media portrays. People have the most clever and intricate costumes, EVERYONE dresses up! The music is wonderful too and it has truly become my favorite day of the year. It's true, the grass *is* always greener. I am happy being settled, it's not that I'm not content with my life and my family. I just want to travel and always have but haven't gotten to yet. I hope you enjoy the time you have staying put! Furniture shopping can be fun ;)