Sunday, April 30, 2006

Hawaii, my not-so-secret love

Yesterday was our neighbor's wedding reception at our local chapel's cultural hall. But it was not your typical "Provo-Mormon" wedding reception.

The best way to describe it is to first mention that they are Samoan. Active Samoan. As in they speak it, eat it, dress it, and love it. Which is such a wonderful thing for them. And us! Mostly us --we're often treated to a barbeque or two and their hospitality is unmatched. :)

But I had forgotten how good the Polynesian cultures, in general, know how to celebrate. And I mean celebrate! It was a hoppin' party with loads of food ("you don't eat until you are full, you eat until you are tired!"), loads of people, and LOTS of dancing. And everyone was dancing. Young, old, thin, didn't matter if you were a good dancer or not, everyone was getting down to the great live band. (Polynesian, of course). I had so much fun! And we were there for 25 minutes. The reception started at 1PM and went until 6PM. No joke--it was that long and everyone (including the bride and groom) was there for the entire time. Okay, except us stiff haoles (white people) that would show up for 10 minutes or so....

Anyways, this just made me miss Hawaii even more than I already do on a frequent basis. Just the feeling of love, family, non-stress, and good food made me feel like I was in the Pacific enjoying a delicious breeze along the beach.

I have been to Hawaii 4 times now. 3 times to the island of Kauai, and once to Maui. I've hiked the mountains, driven to the overlooks, sunned on the beaches, snorkeled in the ocean, eaten tons of local food, explored caves, waterfalls, and rivers, and enjoyed more than one sunset from either a boat, a beach, or a hilltop.

What's funny, is I'm not really a "beach" person. I love the mountains and the deep pine forests and the glorious farmland of the Snake River and the Rocky Mountains. But luckily, I married a Cali boy --and now I'm as beach savvy as the next wahine. (okay, okay, I almost am!!).

This photo was taken on Kauai near the village/town of Hanalei...~sigh~ Don't you just love it?

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