Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Two Hawaii Water Treats

There are so many ways to experience the water in Hawaii.  We did a ton of excellent snorkeling at Kohala beaches and other choice spots, namely Two-Step and Kealakekua Bay (aka "Captain Cook's").

Dave and I snorkeling with dolphins, turtles and a manta ray.

But two of our most wonderful water experiences weren't even in the ocean.  One was the warm pool at Ahalanui Park, south of Hilo.

I took this picture today before we slipped in.
A mix of fresh and salt water, the warm pool is volcanically heated.  It's like floating around in a bathtub.  Except this tub contains little fish that delightfully nibble at your skin when you're still.  Supposedly they help exfoliate you.  Unlike the spa, this experience is free.

Volcanic bliss.

Another free amazing water adventure that's a bit more off the beaten path is the Queen's Bath, a freshwater pool inside a lava tube.  You have to walk a little ways over lava to get there, but it's totally worth it.

A ladder for easy descent.

The water is unlike anything I've ever felt or see before.  It's so clear and cool, and it feels silky.  Must be all the minerals.  After our swim, my skin and hair felt super soft.

One happy mermaid.

You can swim from one side of the tube to the other beneath lava.  The whole experience feels primordial.

So when you come to Hawaii, enjoy the ocean but don't forget there are other ways to frolic in the water.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Don't Worry About a Thing

We keep hearing this song like a message from the universe.

It pops up on the radio in our car.  One of my Pandora stations plays it often. We danced barefoot in the sand when the musicians at our reception played it.  And again we danced to it when the band played it at a Hawaiian house party.

These lyrics are central to my view toward life:

"Don't worry about a thing,
'Cause every little thing gonna be all right."

Every time I hear the song, I'm a little extra grateful for everything that has led me to know the wisdom of these words.

Hakuna Matata Beach
Another song has become part of our Hawaii repertoire.  We had such a lovely day at Hapuna Beach that we renamed it "Hakuna Matata Beach":

Hakuna Matata!  What a wonderful phrase...
It means no worries for the rest of your days
It's our problem-free philosophy
Hakuna Matata! 

Bottom line:  Worry never solved a problem.  It's taken me years to understand that when a worry pops up, I can gently direct my thoughts elsewhere:  to a possible solution, to appreciation of something else, to the gentle acknowledgement that, indeed, everything will be all right.

Of course it's easy to feel that way on my honeymoon in Hawaii after such a perfect wedding surrounded by so much love.
But now I'm being reminded that appreciation of life isn't about experiences.  It's about feeling.  When I'm worried, I'm pushing life away.  When I know that "every little thing's gonna be all right," I'm embracing life.

Thanks Bob Marley and Elton John, for the musical soundtrack to a happy life.