Well folks, Sidney and I are back on the mainland after a long weekend in Kauai, Hawaii. We had the blessing of visiting Hawaii to attend the wedding of a special couple and when we weren’t engaged in wedding-related activities, Sid and I had the chance to explore the gorgeous island.
I thought it would be a good idea to reflect on the trip by highlighting a few of the memorable moments from each full day we were there. But before I dive in, just a quick note on Hawaii: Sidney and I fell in love with the laid back attitude and beautiful landscapes of Kauai. We stayed in a vibrant town called Kapaa on the east side of the island. It is funny, so many times when you travel to somewhere new you create images in your mind about what you think it will be like. Then you get there and the vibe and aesthetics are nothing like you anticipated. Sid and I both agreed that this was the case with Hawaii—in a good way. With that said, here is what we did…
Friday – We woke up in our condo and strolled out to the balcony to watch the sunrise over the ocean. Once the sun had made its full appearance, we went back to bed for a bit (because it is vacation, right?). After we woke up for good, we walked on the beach at our resort area and then lounged at the pool. It was then off to the first wedding event of the weekend for us. Kailey and Corbin were staying in Koloa at a club called Kukui’ula, an approximate 30-minute drive from our resort. On this day they hosted a beach welcome for their guests. We ate lunch, visited with the soon-to-be-married couple, and went on a sailboat ride that was so cool! Once the beach event concluded we headed back to our side of the island and after a drink at an on-site resort bar, we went to a luau. This was an item on Sid’s to-do list and all we could say while watching it was “Sloan would love this.”
Saturday – On this day we picked up a rental car (a cool story for a separate blog post) in the early morning and explored the north shore of Kauai. This adventure was characterized by vibrant beach communities, breathtaking greenery, and white sand beaches. We stopped at a farmers market and enjoyed some exotic fruit and purchased whipped honey. We also made time to gaze at a lighthouse and eat a Hawaiian BBQ lunch in the town of Hanalei. But the best part of this excursion was probably the time we spent at Tunnels Beach, a spot with a pristine shore and Windex-blue water. I relaxed and read my book while Sid snorkeled. We returned to our resort, lounged at the pool, and then went out to Kukui’ula for Kailey and Corbin’s cocktail event. It was a beautiful setting at the club’s pool/spa as we got to know other guests while having another meaningful conversation with Kailey and Corbin. After the event concluded we drove back to our resort and concluded the evening with dessert in bed while watching the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.
Sunday – This special day started with mass at St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in Kapaa. A young priest named Fr. Dario Rinaldi celebrated the service and delivered a homily that could best be characterized as impactful. Sid and I then explored downtown Kapaa. We purchased fresh pineapple from one of the street vendors and browsed a couple shops. We then rented a couple bikes and pedaled along the town’s bike path. It was so refreshing to cycle along the lovely beaches of Kapaa and admire the sheer beauty of the area…it was a good workout too! Afterwards we ate at a beloved local greasy spoon and then headed back to our condo to get ready for the wedding. Once back at Kukui’ula, we basked in the nuptials of Kailey and Corbin. They were married in St. Raphael’s Catholic Church and then had a general ceremony immediately following on the club’s golf course. The reception was a sight to behold. Kailey’s touch was present in it all from the decorations to the music to the menu. What an evening!
Monday – Our last day in Kauai required some planning. Our flight didn’t leave until 10 p.m. but we had to check out by 11 a.m. We made it work. After moving all of our stuff from the condo to the car, we drove to a hiking trail that took us through tropical forestry to a waterfall. It was humid and hot but the scenery and exercise were so worth it. Following the hike we got lunch to-go and brought it to a new beach where we ate and read our books. After spending some time there, we packed up and went to Kealia Beach where we watched the surfers and admired the blue waters. We capped off our time in Kapaa by going downtown to order Hawaiian shave ice. I hope to elaborate on this treat a little bit more on Thursday but until then just know that Hawaiian shave ice truly is the real deal. Once we finished, we started to prepare for our departure. We showered at the YMCA in Lihue and turned in our car. A shuttle then took us to the airport. The moment we arrived at the gate, the constant stream of activity from the past four days came to a close.
What a trip! Of course what I mentioned above were just the big picture events from our time in Kauai. What truly makes a vacation special are all the smaller moments. I hope to address some of those in future blog posts. Thanks to my travel partner and best friend for such a memorable time. Sidney, you are awesome!
And I would be remiss not to mention the people who inspired us to make the 3,000-mile journey to Hawaii. Kailey and Corbin, thanks so much for coming into our lives! Congrats on your marriage and we can’t wait to get together soon. Don’t Blink.