Island time is different than mainland time and especially the hopped up city time I was living on before I got here. Seems every time I look at my watch, I’m surprised that it’s earlier than I thought.  I want to post here more often but then I ask myself  “Do I want to document my experience or do I want to go and participate in the experience?”.  The answer of course is the latter.

Also, I’m up early working and I go to bed early.  A friend of mine here told me that 9pm is Maui midnight.  I totally get that.


I was driving back from a trip to Kahului a couple weeks ago and marveling at the clouds hanging along the mountains (ok volcanoes), the setting sun turning them canary yellow and the shoreline slowly coming into view and realized it right then & there: Dammit I love this place!

Here is a quick snap I took trying to capture the moment - but my phone is pretty lame with capturing the sheer gorgeousness of life here.
Here is a quick snap I took trying to capture the moment – but my phone is pretty lame with capturing the sheer gorgeousness of life here.

Here’s the funny thing – I’m not even a huge fan of heat and humidity has never been my friend (note the curly hair that acts as a hygrometer by the level of frizz).  Go figure. Weather here is pretty much the same daily 82 day / 70 night.


I’ve adjusted to island life, the slower pace, being in nature – not just observing it.  People assume I live here which is pretty amusing and I take it as a compliment.  Tourists ask my advice, people ask me for directions and shop keepers give me the kama’aina discount.  Kama’aina literally translates to ‘child of the land’ but colloquially, it  means you live here. I spoke with a ranger at a nature preserve this week and he assumed I was kama’aina too.  He told me that it was indeed a compliment.  If you are kama’aina you are caretaker of the land & peoples and that not all people who live here are kama’aina. So yay me! 🙂


(There’s much more but here’s a few for now…)

I started paddling with a outrigger club and am totally in love with the sport! After my first outing I was initiated with a short Hawaiian ceremony.  That was incredibly special. I just wish I’d started the week I got here. I’m really not very good at it but I am going to go out every day I can.   I’ve seen flying fish, rainbows and plenty of honu (sea turtles) from the boat. It’s just the start of whale season so we take a device that we can drop in the water to listen for whale song.  So far nothing – but a girl’s got to hope eh? Just getting out in the boat is amazing and the guys I’ve been paddling with are great.  It’s quite a task to paddle through the waves and yes, it can be a bit scary but I totally love it. Why did I have to fall in love with a sport that’s not done too many places besides here?

More pics of living, working, eating and adventuring here on Maui. I’ll catch you up on my favorite place on the island (so far) in the next post.  Yeah, I’ve found my “happy place” and it’s here on Maui. 😉 Also, there is SO much more to explore…



Hi Ho! Island Living, Working & Eating


The view from my outdoor office.

Last week was the end of my vacation time.  But how does one work when surrounded by all this amazing-ness?  To my pleasant surprise, it hasn’t been that difficult to work AND play.  It helps that I love my work and my kick @ss clients too :).  The 2 hour time difference between Hawaii and the west coast where most of my clients are also works in my favor.  I work 6am to 2pm local time which gives me some play time after the hottest part of the day. Win/Win!

At this writing, I remain sunburn free and hope to keep it that way.  My tan lines however are stubborn and only seem to get worse.  I know you are probably feeling really, really bad for me right now…

Checking in from my beach office. (Don’t hate a playah.)

Another bonus – cell service is decent in most places so I can check in on social media for my clients on my phone from tree top or beach – both of which I have done already.

The end of vacation also means most meals at home. Did I mention it’s expensive here?  I’m kind of insulated from the sticker shock though having come from $an Franci$co.  I feel bad for those from the mid-west who are used to a burger for $4.  Here it’s $11 for a burger and fries.   Milk is $6 a gallon, a grilled fish burrito bowl is $10 and a gallon of unleaded gas will set you back $3.22 to 3.50.

I’ve had to get creative with food because my “kitchen” consists of an electric kettle, small fridge, sink and microwave.   It’s not exactly Iron Chef but I’ve made some tasty food so far.  The farmer’s market supplies the best (and cheapest) fruits & veggies and shopping the sales at local markets makes things reasonable. Any kind of protein is expensive though and now I can see why Spam is so popular here. Yes, I got some turkey Spam – it’s not bad when slathered with Sriracha.  But yeah, I think I’m done with the Spam experience.

Clockwise left to right: Salad & Spam n egg tacos, Coconut yogurt w/ banana & almonds, Spam stuffed baked potato & Maui slaw, Giant fresh salad
Clockwise L to R: Salad & Spam n egg tacos, Coconut yogurt w/ banana & almonds, Stuffed ‘baked’ potato & Maui slaw, Maui chopped salad w/ avocado & pumpkin seeds

I’m a big fan of Poke (poh-kay) which is marinated raw fish. The Ahi tuna poke from the local grocery store is ridiculously good and just $11 a lb.  I had to cut myself off after googling just how much raw tuna one should eat in a month (mercury poisoning don’t yah know…). Now I find myself checking the calendar to see when I can eat tuna again.

So, I’m getting into a new rhythm here and feeling so much gratitude for this whole adventure.  Even in the middle of the night when there’s a loud thump on the roof of my bungalow and I awake with a start.  I realize that it’s just a falling coconut and I laugh.  How awesome is that?  Coconuts.

Here are more photos from the last week and some. Roll over for captions, or click any to open a slide show.



Aloha in the Hawaiian language means affection, peace, compassion and mercy. We have no equivalent word in English, which is sad when you think about it.  Commonly ‘aloha’ is used as both a greeting and salutation.  Every aloha is a blessing!  That – I think is wonderful and wish more people understood what aloha-ness means when they say it and receive it.

Maui has her own spirit and sense of place that is quite different from the other islands visited in the past.  I’ve been trying to think of parallels or metaphors to delineate the experiences but they have yet to form.  Maui has a slowness to her and the sense that I was still arriving from the last post has begun to dissipate – but quite slowly and subtly.

I haven’t found words yet for this sinking in and waking up feeling of being here (ok maybe those words will do but there is SO much more – only time will tell).

For now, pictures will tell the story.  Roll over for captions, or click any to open a slide show.


Still Arriving

There is no ‘why’  – just ‘go and do’.  My walkabout was built on news that shouldn’t have been news and then 8 months of “what the hell do I do? & where should I go?” plus some working my butt off to make things happen. Things that involve getting me to leave the place I called home for the last 18 years for places unseen. And friends – really fricking amazing and generous friends. And family. And understanding clients. 😉

After 8 months of kvetching and wondering I decided that the the ‘why’ was really a ‘why the hell not?’ so I booked 10 days in a Maui bungalow to start, then I looked for a cheap one way ticket.

I’m blessed with a job and a life that is not strictly tethered to one location – just decent WiFi.  I sold or gave away 85% of my possessions and headed west to Maui 6 days ago.

I’m still arriving. You know, in the existential sense.

Half filled storage unit, boxes, gypsy car, the corner trading post/giveaway
Half filled storage unit, boxes, gypsy car, the corner trading post/giveaway

I’ve also been working on my relationship to ambiguity (as in trying not to wrestle it to the ground and force it into a nice neat controllable situation).   Ain’t nothing in this life that is for sure ‘cept death and taxes, so why fight it eh?

I could never say that this walkabout has been on my own steam.  Not by a long shot.  I’m blessed with friends & family who helped me sell my stuff, move my stuff, store my stuff, provided a mailing address, surprised me with birthday/travel gift$, wrangled my car and drove me to the airport. I also have an amazing team who covered projects so I could take my first real vacation in years.  It takes a village yo!


Stepping onto the plane at 6:30am I was groggy but still awake enough to wonder WTF I was doing.  Then I got the back row of the plane all to myself and watched movies which knocked out the part of me that still thought this was a crazy idea. Distractions can be lovely.

A tail wind and a half empty plane made for a quick 5 ish hour flight to OGG (Kahului airport Maui).  No turning back now lady!  The valley isle awaits!  Also waiting was my 2004 Toyota Echo which I nicknamed “The Tuna Can”.  She makes a funny sound in reverse, has seen better rust-free days but the A/C works and doesn’t scream ‘Rob me I’m a tourist”. Also the price was right. When in Hawaii – do as the locals do – don’t be a jerky tourist.

I was also greeted by my pal Pete who has been super awesome and helps me not look like the jerky tourist mentioned above. #ihavethebestfriendsevah

Aloha Hawaii! So many vowels and glottal stops! I love you already even if I feel like I’m not really here yet and there are ants crawling all over my laptop.

More soon but for now, here is my trusty Tuna Can:

The Tuna Can - 2004 Echo from No Ka Oi motors (No Ka Oi means 'the best')
The Tuna Can – 2004 Echo from No Ka Oi motors (No Ka Oi means ‘the best’)

If you are going to Maui you’ll need a car. The folks at Maui Car Rental / No Ka Oi Motors  have been fantastic!