Itʻs hard to believe I have been home for two months already. Every night I find myself drifting off into a deep, content sleep with the sound of the ocean hypnotizing me… From my bed, with my head comfortably rested on my pillow I can hear the waves crashing on the beach. Every night I hear this… And every night I think I must already be dreaming… This is too good to be true.. I ʻm home?
I am home.
I am home!
I donʻt think anyone has the slightest clue how awesome it feels to FINALLY be home. It brings tears to my eyes even now as I collect the years of emotions I have held in, longing to come back home.
I happily left my Maui-life in 2005, traded it in for a new one; a California life. It wasnʻt the typical Cali-life though, settling at some hip beach-city. Noooope… I found myself 2 hours AWAY from the ocean, nestled around the Santa Rosa & Chocolate mountains in a beautiful lush escape known as La Quinta… Not the lodging, the city. La Quinta is 2 hours from any Coastal city, including Los Angeles, about 30 minutes East from Palm Springs, and a stop sign away from Indio, where Coachella is held every year. I lived a very good life in California, and enjoy the many memories made over the four year adventure there. Being the Maui-Girl that I am, I was stoked on the mere fact I could drive everywhere — anywhere, really! I remember one day I said I was going to Ralphʻs to get milk (which was down the street) and with my music blasting ended up driving to the Newport Beach Ralphʻs–because I could! I also remember thinking that this is exactly why it was a good thing I was raised on Maui, because on those days I skipped school to go to Hana, who knows where I would have ended up had I lived in California! Vegas perhaps? La Quinta is only four hours from Vegas, and if you donʻt know this already, itʻs the 9th Hawaiian Island, so you know I frequented Sin City;)
Itʻs amazing how long four years can be–I did so much..and I learned even more. Countless roadtrips with my Brother to amazing places, creating priceless memories with special people. One night we even drove to Phoenix and back for a concert! Who does that?! ..We do! Because we could!
I remember coming home in 2007, for a friends wedding and I was slapped in the face by my Islands beauty. The previous few times I was able to visit home prior to that I was distracted and eager to return to the mainland, but in ʻ07, things changed. Epiphanies and realizations of the sort began my longing to be back in the Pacific Ocean on my Hawaiian Island I have the privilege to call home.
I had to finish what I started though, and with the stubborn “in it to win it” mentality I finally finished what I went to California for in 2009. At the worst possible time I had friends coming into town and we were going to Vegas for Spring Break, March Madness, the whole deal. I almost backed out because as usual, when youʻre an entrepreneur and you plan to leave town, shit hits the fan. Well my girls werenʻt having it and I learned to delegate and we hit the road.
I kid you not, our last night in Vegas (St. Pattyʻs Day) I met my now boyfriend of almost two years. Exactly how we met is for another post, but as I packed up my California-life ecstatic to return to my Island-life again, my heart–and a sexy southern accent–was pulling me South.
To this day I cannot believe I got on a plane to go to Sweet Home Alabama! Even more of a surprise was when I failed to get on my return flight! I blame it on Southern Charm and being in a wonderful college town filled with tradition and fun people. I was enjoying myself. December of ʻ09 my boyfriend graduated from Auburn University and we brought the New Year in Maui style. It was a quick trip and when we returned to Alabama together, we returned to a freezing cold, snow-covered Huntsville. This is where I always thought the adventure started–Maui Girl living on 40 acres of straight-up country… but Iʻm realizing it started quite a bit ago.
As I collect my memories and smile from these amazing moments, I will share them…and most of all, I will be thankful to have experienced them.
This song by C&K seems to say it all, so I put together this short video to quickly capture my version of the song. Enjoy my Tarantino-Style of introducing you to what I consider to be the very first post of “Jennʻs Adventures” ..Enjoy the pictures, and more importantly, I hope you enjoy walking down memory lane with me.