This lucky gal just returned from six nights on Maui that by went way too quickly!! It was fantastic to get a break from the cold winter weather in Portland for a bit and celebrate my birthday in style with old friends. Every time I go to Hawaii I kick myself for not booking a trip for twice the duration. It was my fourth time to that particular island and I fall in love with it a little more each time. Very different from Kauai, and someday soon I’ll have to give the other islands a shot. As someone who grew up in the Bay Area of California, I suspect it’s the microclimates and laid back culture that make me feel so at home on Maui.
The trip started out on a nice note when the woman at the Budget desk decided that I needed a free upgrade to a Mustang instead of the economy Chevy compact I’d reserved. That was seriously awesome and unexpected. I had a ton of fun driving that sexy, black beast around the island. If only you could legally drive over 50mph anywhere on the islands! My rigorous daily schedule included a fresh fruit breakfast by the pool, an hour or two at the beach with a picnic lunch, and when the sun became too strong for my northern european heritage, I retreated indoors to spend the afternoon hunting for the best $3 Mai Tai on the island. Once sufficiently hydrated, it was back to the beach to watch the sunset with the locals. After the sun went down, it was time for gourmet meals, desserts, Oregon Pinots (ha!), dancing to Reggae, and burning the midnight oil catching up with my bestie.
My friend since the first grade and her friends treated me like royalty and made me feel so welcome. It was a great time to catch up with old friends and make new ones. Traveling alone offers excellent opportunities to step outside your comfort zone, people watch, and enjoy some serious introspection. To my surprise I didn’t read a single book aside from the one I finished on the plane. Apparently this trip was all about writing and listening to the waves, birds, and breeze. I am proud to report this haole made it through the week without turning into a lobster girl! I have a new love of real bananas and a nice golden glow to remind me of my lovely trip. I am so grateful for this new year ahead of me and the friends I get to share the adventures with along the way.