It's hard to believe that nearly two years ago, I was standing on the island of Maui. It was our first and last honeymoon together. Eric and I decided to travel to Hawaii four months prior to his passing. Before undergoing his last major round of chemo, we made it our mission to get on a plane and leave everything behind for seven days. We made special arrangement to fly first class. The flight was long and comfort was key for Eric. Amazingly, we made it there after what seemed like forever as we flew over a vast span of ocean amidst blue clear skies. I'll never forget the view. Once we reached the shores of Maui, the water turned crystal clear and a vivid hue of blue-turquoise. My first thought upon seeing the island was "we're in paradise." This is exactly where we wanted to be.
After landing on the island, we drove to our condo, where we would stay for seven days. The view was incredible from our condo. The condo itself stood on a prestigious golf course overlooking the ocean shore. We were all of forty feet away from the shoreline. The condo sat level with the ground and had huge windows. One of the back condo walls opened to the outside seating area where there was a huge grill and lounge chairs. In the distance, you could hear the waves coming in every fifteen seconds. We were surrounded by other large condominiums, but the space still felt private. The condominium housed two rooms, two bathrooms, a large kitchen, and two large living areas. Because Eric's health was fragile at the time, we brought along Eric's brother and his fiance for extra assistance. We couldn't of accomplished the trip without them.
The trip itself hadn't really allowed us to forget the cancer, but we still had a great time. Eric spent a lot of time relaxing around the condo. I would routinely find him laying on one of the lounge chairs in back reading a book or studying the shoreline. He was passionate about sunsets. He loved the smell and sounds of the ocean. Eric had an amazing awareness of all things big and small. He'd spend an hour or two just sitting there..deep in thought. Forgetting is easier when there's an ocean to keep you company and no means of keeping track of time.
I devoted a few days to visiting nearby beaches and towns. I brought along my camera to take photos.."getting away" was sort of my oasis. By reaching out to places I'd not yet been, I found my own inner peace. I spent some time traveling the coastline of West Maui. I visited numerous beaches and did some shopping. I'd hope to visit a spa while there, but wasn't able to..the spa resort I'd heard about was a forty-five minute drive from our condominium. It was simply too far for us to drive and staying at the condominium was a safer bet for Eric...so, we skipped it.
On the days Eric was feeling partially well, we made an effort to leave the condo for a few hours. We visited (in-laws included) Paia (a small town located inland) for a day of leisure and also, to visit a local Buddhist temple. We also traveled to a local aquarium, where we stood in awe of "jellyfish". Laugh. We ate out a few times and walked along the beautiful beaches near our condo.
To say that Maui is an amazing place is an understatement...I'm not quite sure what took me so long to document our travels to Hawaii. I'm sure there's an emotional component to it that I wasn't ready to take on until now.
I decided to dedicate the class I'll be teaching at Reflections to the topic of traveling. It seemed a great opportunity to finally tell the story of our honeymoon to Hawaii. The class is called, "Yesterday's Travels". The above images are of the project students will be working on in class. I've used quite a number of photos in this album and made a significant amount of room for journaling. If you're taking the course, you'll need to bring a minimum of thirty 4" x 6" photos (vertical/horizontal) (*Further supply items needed to complete the album will be provided in the near future to students taking the course). I encourage you to think about the order in which you want to tell your story...more on that later :)
That's today's post! Off to get the little guy from an Easter party at daycare. Hope all of you are having a wonderful week!