Highlights from Hawai’i

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It’s been a very long time since I wrote a blog post.

The last few weeks have been crazy to say the absolute least, and sometimes it feels with blogging—and with exercise, healthy eating, and so on—that the more days that pass, the harder it is to jump back on the bandwagon. I really love blogging, though, and recognize that I need to invest more time and effort into it if I really want to make it something special, which it is to me.

Anyway, I wanted to post a few highlights of our Maui adventures a couple of weeks ago. You saw my post about the Maui Oceanfront Marathon, but I’ve written little else about it. So a few photos and highlights will have to suffice. : )

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Sunrise at Haleakala Crater

This is one of those touristy activities that I didn’t do last time I was in Maui, so the morning after we arrived, we got picked up at a very healthy 3:00AM to ride in a van with several other people up winding mountain roads until we got to the top of a 10,000+ foot crater and 30-degree weather at 4:30AM were we would hang out until about 6AM when the sunset.

It was freezing and miserable up there. And yet so worth it.

Which was followed by…

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Biking Down Haleakala Crater

This is also one of those touristy activities that brands itself as “active travel” when in reality we went on a 20-something mile bike ride and only had to pedal about 0.5 of a mile. The whole time.

It was awesome and I highly recommend this. We were with some slowpokes (boo… I am an adrenaline junkie and wanted to just bomb down the mountain) but it was probably good to go with a guide as probability of getting lost is relatively high otherwise. Plus please note how awesome I look in this yellow jumpsuit.

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Whale Watching

Before this trip, I thought of whale watching as an activity that Mommy would beg to do and I would begrudgingly acquiesce, and then we’d spend two hours on a freezing boat until a guide yelled “I think I saw a tail over there!” but to everyone on the boat it looks precisely like nothing at all. Until today. January and February are peak months for whales and before leaving the harbor we had a whole whale family dancing around our boat. It was awesome.

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Lava Flows – And Lots of Them

I’ll be honest, I’m not a huge pina colada girl (or coconut girl in general – too overpowering). Mai Tais are not my favorite either. But a pina colada with strawberry in it? YES PLEASE. I don’t want to count how many of these or how many $2 margaritas at Betty’s Beach Café were consumed in the week. Probably between “way too many” and “a seriously awesome amount.”

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The Road to Hana

The Road to Hana is one of those typical tourist activities that “omgyouhavetodo!!!1” but kind of suck the soul out of you as you’re driving around 4,592,182 hairpin turns and over 3,975 bridges (I forgot the exact statistics but I’m sure they are somewhere close to that). BUT, the views and natural beauty of the Hawaiian coastline are totally worth it! And there’s self-service banana bread stands. Are we in heaven??

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I love banana bread. You know what I love just as much? Banana macademia nut pancakes.

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Enough said, nah?

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Good Fish

I love seafood. It’s the thing that kept me from ever being 100% veg—I needed some fish in my life once in a while. (preferably in a raw form involving some sort of rice and seaweed…) When we were in Maui, we got to check out two very nice restaurants that were very close to our hotel, I’o and Pacific’O restaurants in Lahaina, HI. I’d recommend both and need to do a real review separately.

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The Beach

It’s ironic considering I spent the last 7-8 years on the coast (4 in LA, 2+ in Mozambique, the last year in San Francisco) yet I consider myself more of a mountains type of girl. But man was it nice to hang out on the beach and not be freezing (or be swarmed by tiny African children asking for money).

 

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Surfing (If I Can Really Call It That)

I spent about 4 hours in the surf one of the later days and all I had to show for it at the end was a brutal sunburn that is STILL peeling (it’s been 2.5 weeks!!!!) and a nasty sure-to-scar gash on my leg, but I did catch about three waves for a handful of seconds at a time. Success…

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Ice Cream, Maui Made

had at least three ice cream cones from Roselani, Maui’s local ice cream place. The clear winners? Kona Mud Pie and Banana Macadamia Nut that also had toffee in it. Ice cream is one of my favorite things but it’s always too freezing here to eat it. Not in Hawaii! Holla.

Overall Maui was a really great trip. Traveling with Alyssa was wonderful and I finally was able to stop stressing out about work/responsibility/life for a few days. I do understand why many adults don’t take vacations wit what has to happen before and after, but I’m really happy that the trip was a success.

Here’s to the next tropical vacation (and may it occur sooner rather than later…)

Courtney

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