Every time i arrive in Hawaii i always remember that first feeling when i get off the plane...stepping off the ramp and onto the tarmac, the warm trade winds whip my hair around my face and smell that sweet balmy air that can only come from these islands. For this landing we are received by Michael's uncle Joseph and two cousins Zia and Lillian. With heady tuberose leis around our necks we pile into the van and head to Kula, upcountry Maui on the slope of Haleakala. Once we arrive and settle in the first thing i want to do is walk, to shake off the long day of travel and to find myself. Their house is at the end of the road, surrounded by pasture and spots of waddle forest. So i walk... first on the old paved road... i walk until it turns to red Maui earth... i walk until it turns to a single track trail... i walk until the grass is knee high and the berry bramble catches my clothes. Pheasants spook, shriek and fly away. There are so many shades of green, it goes beyond what i can imagine, the vines, the trees, the grasses. In vibrant contrast, a bright orange lichen grows on the waddle tree trunks and drippy vines with pink blossoms hang down in the way of lush jungle opulence. As i climb over one fence then another the light shifts and i look out over the sea...the late afternoon sun is shinning over the water between the west Maui mountains and Lanai. Drinking in this much beauty makes my eyes fill with tears...I'm home, I'm home, I'm home...in my body and on this earth. I finally feel all that chaos is over....the graduation, the packing, the planning, the moving, the goodbye-ing... in this moment i am here, in this moment i can breathe, in this moment i begin again. I walk until the light shifts again and i stop, this time to look up the mountain. I catch my breath as i find myself locked in a gaze with a deer. He is magnificent. A spotted axis buck with three points to his crown. It rains easy here... frequent, gentile and quick. My tears match that. Here the rain is sacred, a blessing, showering love, and aloha from the sky to the land. I let my tears be the same, let them wash away the stress, melt thee tension, be a blessing to this body, my soul.
|view from the lanai, south shore maui, molokini and kahoolawe in the distance|
|the homestead. platform on the right, main house in the middle and the guest cottage on the left|
|sunset from the pasture|