The spirit of Aloha must have bit me in the butt because I am in a great mood.
I do believe I am coming off of the perfect Hawaiian weekend. When I set out to move to Hawaii, I wasn’t sure exactly what I was looking to achieve here, but after a weekend like this, I may have figured out just what it is I’m doing here. I had a full, active day on Saturday to kick the weekend off, and I’ve had a relaxing, sun and book filled Sunday to wind the weekend down.
At about noon yesterday three of my friends and I set off to explore the rainforest, a place on this island that I had yet to explore. As a matter of fact, I kept forgetting that there even was a rainforest on this island because I was too preoccupied by the beaches and the variety of other terrains that exist here. In order to get to the rainforest, you have to turn off of the main road that leads to the north end of the island and travel on a dirt/gravel road for several miles. I was riding in the back of the pick-up truck both going up the mountain and coming down it, which makes for a scenic ride, but it also makes the bumpy journey seem rather long.
It’s incredible the amount of diversity that exists within the few miles that make up Molokai. Slowly, as we climbed up the dirt road, the scenery changed from almost a desert dry to a refreshing green, tall trees, abundant wildlife. The road we traveled on was the only sign that another human being had ever even traveled up that way. The road snaked right through the woods. After well over an hour of driving, we reached a clearing on our left where we pulled the truck over and stopped for a few minutes. There was no view where we were, but the clearing that existed was made up entirely of moss, which meant that it wasn’t being maintained by people, although it was perfect enough to look like it was a nicely mowed chunk of lawn. The four of us sat down in the clearing and enjoyed a few rays of sun that were poking through the clouds. When we initially set off on this trip our goal was to get away from the relatively hot temperatures in town. As soon as we began heading up I felt the temperature drop and watched as more and more clouds set in overhead. Thankfully, when we left our little clearing and drove the rest of the way to the top of the mountain, we reached a clear patch in the clouds and were able to see this:
When I visited Kauai last year, I remember driving the rental car up a big mountain and reaching the top only to look out over the overlook and see that is was an extremely foggy day. This was not the case on Saturday. In fact, I do believe this may have been the most stunning view of nature I have ever seen – and I’ve hiked the Appalachian Trail and stood on the edges of cliffs and looked out on expanses of Kenyan grasslands. As a matter of fact, my initial reaction when reaching the overlook was to fall to my knees or at least take in a few extra breaths. The photos above, of course, do not do the view justice and I’m not even sure if I can explain the beauty, but I was looking down hundreds of feet into what appeared to be no more than a large crack in the earth that was covered in vegetation and dried waterfalls that plummeted into a shadowy crevice that spills out into the ocean to the north. There, the ocean meets the land and then stretches out for thousands of miles before hitting Alaska.
Over the few hours that we were in the rainforest, we had a picnic and went for a hike on a nature trail, but whenever I got the chance I kept poking my head back over the railing to get a look at the view. While we were there, two Hawaiian hunters actually climbed down the cliff to get to their dogs which had killed a wild boar down below. I was glad not to have to lug a dead boar all the way up the cliff side, but they seemed more than happy to do it.
Thankfully I remembered my sunscreen because being even just a few hundred feet closer to the sun can really impact the effect it has on your skin. We headed back down the mountain and made it home before sunset.
Sunday was the complete opposite of Saturday. It was as if everyone on the island had decided that we all needed to just take a day to completely chill, and that’s what we did. I spent my day going back and forth between my apartment and our carport. It worked out nicely, I got plenty of fresh air, but I was still able to recover from all of the excitement from Saturday. I’ve been reading “Eat Pray Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert which is such a fun book, not to mention eye opening, so I was able to completely devour that throughout the day. Sunday was also the perfect temperature and had just the right amount of sun, too.
Ah, the perfect weekend.