Sunday, December 1, 2013

In Hawaii, remembering

We are spending 12 days on the Big Island of Hawaii. We have a timeshare here about 25 miles north of Kona, five miles upslope from the beach. The condo is comfortable and quiet, on a golf course with a flock of resident turkeys who approach us hopefully as we sit on our patio, or run by nearby on the grass.

This is our sixth trip to the Big Island. On our last visit we were joined by our daughter and son-in-law; on the one before we rented a glass-bottomed boat and scattered my mother's ashes offshore near a pod of whales. We've walked the length of Alii Drive in Kona and crossed the crater in Volcanoes National Park.  We've explored most of the rest of the island.

On this trip, we have a couple of outings planned. On Wednesday we'll be picked up and taken to a cattle ranch north of here for dinner and entertainment. And next Monday we're taking a guided hike on Saddle Road, which crosses the island to Hilo on the rainy side. Otherwise, our days are open so far.

My father was a Marine. When I was in college in California, my parents lived on Oahu, at the Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station. I came home for Christmas and summers. For two years I participated in local summertime Gilbert and Sullivan musicals. In Kailua, where the musicals were held, I met local teenagers who were also in the plays. I especially remembered Jenean. She was 16 then, I think, and I was 19. We hit it off immediately, having long talks and enjoying the goofiness that happens during rehearsals. We became good friends.

Jenean and I lost touch soon after.  Yesterday I was sitting in our quiet condo and I suddenly remembered how to spell her first name. I'd recalled before that it was an unusual spelling but had forgotten the combination of letters. Anyway, I looked her up on Facebook and found her! I sent a message: "Did you and I do summer musicals together in the late 60s in Kailua?" She responded yes. We talked on Facebook Messenger for an hour and a half, catching up. She lives in the Bay Area now and works for Facebook! She travels all over the world for her work. We've decided to meet up the next time she's in the Pacific Northwest.

I first came to Hawaii over 45 years ago. Some things have changed - but not the weather, or the quiet, or the beauty. I'm glad we're back again.

13 comments:

Terra said...

What a remarkable Facebook story of a reunion and thank God for friends with unusual names. That wouldn't work with Mary Smith. Your time in Hawaii sounds relaxing.

DJan said...

It sounds wonderful to have found an old friend. I have an old friend I have tried now and then to find, but no luck. Her married name is not known to me, and her first name is Fran.

I'm glad you're having lots of sunshine. It's raining here right now, but we've got clear and cold weather coming up next week! :-)

Galen Pearl said...

You have a long history with Hawaii. How nice to experience it at different times in your life. And how great you reconnected with your old pal.

I am making a change in my life now. I've posted my last blog post (hope you'll stop by), and I'm visiting folks like you who have been such good blog buddies.

I have enjoyed your blog and your book. Thank you. Wishing you all the best, Galen

Meryl Baer said...

Hawaii sounds wonderful - weather sounds great especially compared to our cold, dark weather here. And so glad you connected with an old friend.

Linda Reeder said...

Is there anything you haven't done or can't do? Musical theater too?!
I think you chose a good time to be in the tropics. It is going to get very cold here at home by the end of the week.
I love the Facebook story.
Have fun.

Out on the prairie said...

I was there in June and wanted to stay. Loved Volcano park, and the bakery on the southmost tip. Surfing was my priority.

BLissed-Out Grandma said...

Oh, lovely. We talk about going some day. Peter hates to travel but loves Hawaii and Molokai. Enjoy!

Retired English Teacher said...

Wow, that is a great story about reconnecting with your friend from long ago Hawaii days. Your vacation sounds like heaven to me. Enjoy, Linda. Soak up the sun. Relax. Do all those things you enjoy.

wheels4me said...

Congrats on reconnecting with an old friend. Have a wonderful time in Hawaii. The Parker Ranch is HUGE! I hope you get a chance to check out the telescopes -- http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis/.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

It sounds wonderful! And how great that you were able to reconnect with a special friend from the past. Hawaii is such a special place.

My husband and I are going to Maui for a week in the spring and then to the Big Island (Hilo) to visit one of my dearest friends from college who is a native of Hilo and is in poor health now. We've rented a home in a rainforest backing onto a 25 foot waterfall for lots of peace, quiet and heartfelt reflections with a treasured friend. I'm counting the days!

How wonderful that you have a timeshare in a place you love so much! May every day bring new joy!

Friko said...

It’s wonderful to come across a long lost friend.

I hope your stay in Hawaii will bring back many other happy memories. Enjoy yourself.

Dee said...

Dear Linda, this is such a hopeful posting. Hopeful in the sense that we are able to walk the arc between the past and the present and renew friendships like yours with your old Gilbert and Sullivan pal. How wonderful that after all these years you'll be seeing her again at some point.

I want to thank you for stopping by my blog several times in the past couple of months. I so appreciate your comments.

And also, I appreciate the travel that you do and that you share. Your trip to Africa this past year really helped me see the wonder of that continent. Thank you. Peace.

Perpetua said...

How lovely to go back to somewhere that mattered to you in the past and find such enjoyment there. My DH spent some time on Hawaii en route from Japan to the US by boat when he was a student - nearly 50 years ago now - and he loved it.