Aloha mai kākou!!
As I write this, I am laying in the van and so exhausted after our insane weekend! Mentally, and physically, exhausted. Yet very happy as I reflect on the last few days.
After classes were finally done on Friday we went for a quick afternoon jump in the ocean at Reeds Bay, had a really relaxing yoga class, and then we grabbed some pizza to enjoy at our friend Heather and Jason’s tiny home in Orchidland-actually where we house-sat last month! It was a great evening! We feel very blessed to have such great friends as well as a place to park our van after hanging out and indulging in some wine and beer. 😉
Saturday we headed out early to the Hawaiian Immersion school, Nawahīs’ annual fundraiser event, Pūlama Maoli Ola. I work at the immersion preschool Pūnana Leo o Hilo right next door and I saw plenty of my students all day! I am beginning to really love being a kumu (teacher). We helped set up and then enjoyed the event surrounded by more and more familiar faces than last year. This is a community we are really excited to get involved in and apart of. We also love watching the keiki preform while looking forward to watching our own keiki one day and raising them to be fluent in Hawaiian.
We headed to explore Rainbow Falls (Wailele ānuenue) with some friends from the Hawaiian language college next. It was a blast jumping waterfalls (okay I’m actually quite the chicken with jumping), scaling rock walls, and freezing our booties off!
*Pic below is an old one from rainbow falls… I was slacking on photos this weekend!
After we dropped off our friends, we spontaneously decided to drive to Kona side (we live in Hilo, the east and much wetter side with no sunset views)! It was about 4pm, we talked it over real quick, and started driving! I was so excited to get there in time for the sunset-literally my favorite thing on earth to watch. We had a really nice night in Kona, listened to an Anuhea concert from the lawn outside the hotel, got dinner at one of our favorite vegan restaurants, ʻAipono Cafe, and went out on the town with our friend Jake.
I woke the guys up pretty early and we headed to Kua Bay- one of our favorite beaches on that side. It was such a beautiful “dawn patrol” morning, especially because there were hardly tourist there yet!
After a few hours of sobering up in the sun (lol!), we headed up to Waimea town to meet our friends Heather and Jason again and go on the “White Road” hike. It was a beaaaaautiful view of the valley after we finally trucked all the way up there… About an hour and a half (we thought it was much shorter than that!) and we were at a huge man made slide made from the water irrigation system. By the time we got there, it really was already time to head back since we had planned to drive another hour from where the cars were in Waimea, and then go on ANOTHER pretty intense hike! ***Hopefully I’ll get the go pro shots from Heather soon and I’ll upload some from the beautiful white road hike.***
It was pretty dark by the time we got to Pololū lookout…. Then we hiked down 5 switchbacks with all of our gear-Hoapili actually had a saw sticking out of his backpack, talk about dangerous!!! Oh and we had our dog with us too and I was intensely freaking out that she would fall down the cliff the whole time! She’s done that hike several times but definitely not in the dark when I can’t see her very well! I was one scared Mama!
Oh, I forgot to mention that the winds were really, really insane, probably upwards of 30mph…. Aaahhhh!! We set up camp in that crazy wind and cooked some soup and chili on Heathers handy dandy camping stove (after jerry rigging an area with rocks to protect the fire from the wind). What a life saver she is! Our tent was so crooked from the wind, it was just downright hilarious that we actually went and camped there!!
The trek back up those switchbacks is what really did me in though… Three hikes in one weekend is a bit more than we’re used to!!
Anyway, I thought this jammed packed, crazy, but awesome Valentines Day weekend was worth sharing with you all! Again, we are so thankful for our van for making all of these adventures possible and much more accommodating than those square house hours away from all the adventures! More posts are coming about the practicalities of van life and some other thoughts about it! Again, please share if you have anything you’d like me to write about or if you have any van life questions!
Mahalo for reading,