Monday, December 2, 2013

A Grateful Aloha

Jojo and I have made the annual pilgrimage to Kauai, and, as always, it's good to be back on the island decompressing from an amazing season.  This year, for the first time, my sister, Sabe, is joining us for ten days.  The first three days of this adventure did not disappoint and have been some of the highlights of my entire past three years on the island.  

The Petterson family did thanksgiving on the beach, and it was a great way to spend turkey day.  The family brought together an amazing meal, and, after indulging, we rolled ourselves into the ocean.  We played one of the most hilarious ocean games ever.  It was 'how far can you body surf up onto the beach?' Even this beach game can be a heated competition.  It involved pretty much chucking oneself into a wave and getting tossed as far as possible onto the beach.  It would leave the group of us looking like drowned rats washed ashore.  My stomach hurt from laughing so hard. We played the annual game of kickball and then we left to pick my sister up from the airport.  It was a perfect thanksgiving with the most amazing weather.  Before Sabe even arrived, there was a lot to be thankful for. 

Our first day of adventuring, Sabe, jojo, and I went north to the end of the road and hiked to Hanakapaia Falls.  Jojo had hiked along the coast on the stunning Kaulaulau trail before but never hiked into the mountains to the falls.  This was, hands down, one of the coolest things I've ever done.  We hiked on a cliff as the ocean was raging below us.  There were twenty foot waves crushing the shoreline.  Then, we turned inland to the falls, a two hundred foot waterfall that mists into a clear pool below.  We swam underneath this waterfall.  I can check that off my life list.  My sister kept saying, 'I swear I've seen this in movies'.  She's probably right. 

Yesterday, we watched an angry ocean shoot up forty feet in the air (again, we've seen this type of thing in photos and never in real life), and today, the ocean was calm enough that we could swim in tidal pools.  We also watched a pod of whales for about thirty minutes very close to the shore and ate a hawaiian shaved ice the size of my head.  I'm not exaggerating at all.  It's been a perfect couple of days. 

I'm grateful to have all of these opportunities.  I'm one lucky ducky. 

 Hanakapaia Beach, where Cairns are born
 Jojo and Sabe watching the surf
 Sabe checking the tidal pool

Kauai even served us up a rainbow at Anahola Beach