Being born and raised in Hawaii, there are a lot of things I took for granted. The list is especially long because I was conveniently located in downtown Honolulu, but here are a few of the biggies:
- The beaches. Specifically, beaches next to the ocean. I found an article about sandy beaches in Colorado that are “pure paradise,” but if you’re from Hawaii and you look at the photos of said beaches—which are next to lakes—there’s a good chance you’ll feel nothing but pure depression.
- The food. I don’t cook very often—OK… I actually don’t cook at all—so living down the street from Liliha Bakery was like being in heaven. And, just about anything and everything else I craved was no more than a ten-minute drive away. Even if I went to a fast food joint, I could count on everything tasting fairly decent. This brings me to the next thing on my list…
- The water. Everyone knows the tap water in Hawaii is among the cleanest around, so I certainly didn’t expect to find the same quality of water in Colorado. However, I also didn’t expect to learn that the water here may be unsafe for drinking because it contains abnormal amounts of a chemical found in Teflon and Scotchgard. I should’ve known something was up, though, because I purchased fountain drinks from three different places here and they ALL tasted funky. Needless to say, both Koa and I are now strictly bottled-water drinkers. (Can you believe I have a dog who drinks SmartWater?!)
Today, as we walked to the dog park in 32-degree weather, I thought about these things. I looked down at the dirty, slushy snow beneath our feet and wondered why I left the warm beaches, the delicious and diverse food, and the drinkable water. But then, I looked up. I looked up and saw what I think was the first real photo-worthy thing I’ve seen since I got here. I saw how beautiful a barren tree looked with the bright blue sky in the background and I remembered one of the big reasons I came here: To experience mother nature as I’ve never done before. I want to play in the snow, climb up the mountains, and yes, swim in the lakes.
There are things I miss, but there are so many new things I’ll be able to experience. Now that the snowstorm is over, it’s time to get out and start doing just that.