My favorite mountain range, the Koolau’s. There was a question I was asked many years ago after I had moved away from the islands: ”Which do you prefer, living in the mountains or by the ocean?” I responded, “in the mountains by the ocean”!
I grew up in Hawaii, on the island of O’ahu in the late 60’s thru the 80’s. That was during the reign of dune buggies, volkswagon “things” and pedi cabs. It was also a time of unparalleled freedom. As a child I would just walk out of our house and into the jungle, find a stream and follow it until I got disinterested in the journey, then head back. I did not pack water or snacks or make any special preparations. I just went. my brothers and I (only girl) had absolutely no money, but we had a great entrepreneurial spirit! There were lots of tourists near us and we had Plumeria trees that we made lei’s from and sold for $1 a piece. Also, we would pick mangoes from neighboring trees (ok not ours) and sell them too. Serious cash then. But, I also think we must have looked like wild savages and they wanted to help us. I myself had crazy hair, was barefoot and wore basically a t-shirt and bikini bottoms for modesty. That is also how I went to school. On the beaches in Waikiki we would ask the tourists to throw a quarter in the ocean and we would dive for them. so fun and profitable! We were just kind of wild and free, making cash as we needed to go to a movie or maybe get a malasada. I still carry that wildness and freedom seeking inside me. I just find the times now challenge me with fears I never considered as a child. But, I still have my memories as a free and happy child to bring me back home safely and let go of what I can never control…