"...to flow with the ocean is always the best thing to do; to be a part of it and enjoy it is what really matters."
-Clyde Aikau, Surfer, Lifesaver, O'ahu

Justine and I volunteered at the Book and Music Festival today at Honolulu Hale which is going on until tomorrow.  They have a great book swap area where you can bring a book and exchange it for a new treasure.  Belle would've been stoked.  It's on until 4:30pm today and from 10-4:30pm tomorrow.  You should check it out.

After weeks of tumultuous-ness the days have grown more manageable.  I feel like I've gone through the 5 steps back to love: 

1. Anger
2. Hurt
3. Fear
4. Guilt
5. Love

and am (almost) back to my self.  The surf went holo holo for a while but is back for mango season.  I'm hoping to get back in the water that helps so much with my struggle to remain humble and capable of enjoying the simple pleasures of this island.  I'll admit that when I'm out of the water for too long I get a little crazy. The salt water is necessary to wash away some of the buildup in my bottomless well of emotion. 

I want to keep her.  That much is for sure.  She belongs here and she knows who she is.

Other than that this week was full of "room for the living."  We sailed, watched Princess Kaiulani (awesome), fell in love with the dance floor and the DeadBeats, Natsuko had her quarter of a century crisis party, Chris went to visit 'Bama for the first time in 6 years, Marina got back at the "bad lawyer",  cried, laughed, loved a lot.  

This passage in Krishnamurti's "The Book of Life" brought me comfort:

"There is no loss of energy in being in love.  The loss of energy is in the tail, in everything that follows - jealousy,possessiveness, suspicion, doubt, the fear of losing that love, the constant demand for reassurance and security."

The preoccupation with holding on to something, or someone forever is what I think paralyzes us from living and enjoying the present.  Change is inevitable but that change can be for the better, or at least that's my hope, for myself, for my loved ones and for our world.  

My mantra is becoming "Just ride the wave.  The rest'll figure itself out."  Watching short boarders at Bowls as we sailed from the harbor yesterday was awe-inspiring.  I watched a guy ride a wave so hard, squeezing every last bit of life out of his wave, and started thinking about my own practice, my ocean yoga aka longboarding.  I do it because it destresses me.  Maybe that's why I don't enjoy short boarding -- that and the thought of my legs in the water unnecessarily is horrifying. I feel like it requires this uber level of alertness when I'd prefer to just cruise.   Long story short, "life is beautiful when when we don't let our fears keep us from living." So that'll be my aim, my purpose.  Which ultimately is the eternal condition for success (a fortune cookie told me so).



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It's officially the first day of summer -  for Justine, anyway - and we're drinking rum in Starbucks in our passion iced tea lemonade, playing "shee shee head" and reading newspapers/books for pleasure.

The weekend saw the arrival of Mate - our new Tahitian friend and everlasting amounts of music.  Plan was to hike to Ka'au Crater, but as they say, the best laid plans gang aft agley.  We ended up in Kailua surfing unpredictable wind waves and having unrestricted amounts of fun. My favorite line of the weekend was:  "This is my first time surfing Malibu.  I like it."  He surfed that longboard like a shortboard, like the male version of a ballerina (I think they're called chevaliers.) 

Chris dropped us off at UH and new friends Carol and Dana picked us up to go mid-island.  I'd always wanted to know what growing up in Wahiawa was like, and Sunday night was a fulfillment of that. 5-21 year old college boys, Vicki, Nicole, and myself, Fun Factory, homemade loco mocos, sweet chili, Two Truths and a Lie, karaoke, and copious amounts of Catch Phrase later we were 'ohana.  It's been a while since I tapped my inner 12-year-old.

Fun Factory is Vegas for kids.  I knew I'd crossed some kind of threshold into adulthood when I looked at the game that gave quarters and thought it'd be fun to play so I could get laundry money.  Ugh.  We ended up playing the game where we could win candy instead. Big fans of instant gratification.
A high school teacher just sat down with us to correct essays.  Justine and I are a bit tipsy.  This is going to be fun.
45 minutes later...

Her son was little Hurley on Lost!  First 3 minutes of:
http://www.hulu.com/watch/90208/lost-tricia-tanaka-is-dead.  Rad!
20 minutes after that.

Ok, sobriety is rejoining my arsenal.  
Maui - less than two weeks away.  Stoked.  I feel like it will open up a world within me that I've been waiting for.  Maybe not so patiently, but waiting all the same. It'll be just the girls and the mountain over the clouds and the wild expanse of ocean in all its iterations.  Can't hardly wait. <3

Thus it is that you should be sensitive to where you situate yourself in the world... go to a place known to be conducive to what you want to achieve.If you sense that there is great well-being, that the plants and animals of the area are healthy, that the place is not subject to extremes of weather that would adversely affect your health, then that is the place for you. When you move there, you will be sustained. - from 365 Tao, "Site"
Today was  emotionally taxing.  I felt like I absorbed all kinds of energy: good, bad, healing, painful, transforming, stilling,  maybe even a little healing - the energy that brought me here in the first place.  That healing stuff is the reason I left New York; why even after being pulled in all directions, the only one that resonated enough to hold my adult ADD was this floating city.

Life is funny; sometimes funny-haha! and sometimes funny - wtf? My heart hurt today and it got me thinking about the fickle nature of time and people.  That no matter how "sure" you are of something, it will forever change.   My question of the day was, "Why do the rules keep changing?"   A question I have yet to answer.  I'm not too scared because as much as I might be overwhelmed in this tiny pinpoint of time I find life here in Hawai'i... sustaining.  As much as my brain pushes me to a constant stream of questioning, I don't want my actions to come from a place of fear, but I don't want to lie to myself either.

From different sources came the topic of "me" time and selfishness.  Is it selfish to take time to figure out what you want?  If so, what is the deadline until you say, "I'm just not that into you."  What makes us so chicken$h*t that we keep people hanging?  It's certainly not for their benefit.  Let me explain: the way I see it, if you love someone you want them to be happy.  Now, would you be happy if someone thought you wanted what they wanted but you really didn't?  Would they?  
From a different angle: if someone keeps using an excuse/reason for not doing what they say they're going to do instead of fessing up to their own insecurities and fears - is that love?

I guess it all boils down to knowing what is happening and then still choosing to put yourself in that position.  But how can you know love from lovemist?  Does the love diminish with practicality? or is it just the "in love" feeling that dissipates? And then... how many tears does it take before it's too much, does it have to be enough to fill an ocean or just enough to yank painfully at the heart? 

Just one thing has remained constant.  I'm in love with Hawai'i.  With the way it makes me want to be the best version of myself, the way it makes me cry tears of joy and not pain, the way it somehow keeps me close and warm when I'm lost and discouraged.  Like most places,  people act as liason, but more than that, the vast embracing ocean does it's part to wash the salty tears away.

Thankfully, tomorrow is a new day; what was being the death of what is.  Time to wait and see.

Sometime in April...

"It's been 11 days, 23 hours, 5 minutes and 21 seconds since you last logged in, and we're starting to get really worried."  The message in my email says.  My apologies, been busy.  My sister, Kristine, who graduates college in just shy of two weeks, wrote me the most beautiful card via snail mail.  She wrote:  

"...The gravity of those words: first, last... It's just further proof that everything is fleeting, which is in itself the beauty of life: it keeps going.  The most wonderful things can happen in a moment, and with a snap, it's gone."

Bravo, sibling.  April was certainly a month of beautiful fleeting moments.

Bikram was a time  for introspection and UH reminded me so much of Stony Brook.  I spent a whole day exploring Hamilton and Sinclair Libraries and picking the brains of the Hawaiian Studies librarians.  What is it about not being in school anymore that makes being on campus so focusing?  Maybe it's just nice to play student when you know there's no final exam.

One day, Marina and I met a Good Samaritan with ulterior motives.   Yup, they exist in paradise, too.

Right when I came to terms with not going to Kokua Festival, Justine called and offered me a ticket.  Gratis.  I shook my head in disbelief.  The night was serendipity incarnate.  As I sat on the green with new friends, I noticed a girl with piercing blue eyes and wild, curly blonde hair.  Turns out we'd met  at Cross Keys in New Jersey not so long ago.  Her name is Vicky and she (in my professional opinion) belongs in Hawai'i. 

JJ's new video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWVnZAJaq4QJack Johnson - You And Your Heart www.youtube.com Official music video for Jack Johnson's single "You And Your Heart" off his new album To The Sea (2010).  Enjoy!

Reverse back a couple of weeks... Justine is leading me to my inner hippie a little more each day.


May 3, 2010

Yesterday was gloomy in a good way.  The island needed the rain;  that misty constant stay-in-and-watch-movies-all-day kind of rain that can't help but renew you.  It's Monday again and the beginning of a new month.  A month somewhere lazily between spring and summer.  There is no enduring satisfaction like reaching your goals.  Big, small, intermediate,   doesn't matter.  Here are some of my goals for May:
  • Jump off Waimea Rock
  • Visit Maui
  • Write 2 Chapters of my book
  • Attend a class at KCC or UH
  • Taste something new
What about you?

Thanks for reading :)