For the past week I’ve been vacationing with the fam on the gorgeous island of Maui, Hawaii. And for the past week we’ve been engaging in the following activities:
- Wake up and try to figure out what/where we’re gonna eat.
- Get showered and dressed.
- Go eat.
- Go to the beach.
- Set out on our fun adventure of the day.
- Find somewhere else to eat after completing our fun adventure (like 97 percent of this entire trip consisted of us eating).
- Do some more exploring until somebody suddenly develops a sweet tooth.
- Find somewhere that has good dessert to satisfy said sweet tooth (translation: eat again).
- Head back to our condo and pass out.
One of the main highlights of our trip was traveling the Road to Hana, a historic highway (built in 1900) stretching 64 miles long from a town called Kahului to another town on the eastern side of Maui called — you guessed it! — Hana. The road was super narrow (only one lane each way) with a bunch of ridiculous curves and twists that could have anyone driving off the edge of a cliff in nanoseconds (Bless God for my daddy’s professional driving abilities!). But along the way were some of the most magnificent, serene displays of nature I’ve ever seen, which made the journey so worth it.
Lesson: No matter how crazy or challenging the road is, there is beauty and peace in the process.
Factoring in all the stops we made along the way, the entire trip took about a day. Before we hit the road, we stopped to get some snacks (of course) and a few other essentials for our trip. One of which included a GPS-enabled audio map that would tell us where to go and which stops to take along the way. We could either purchase the CD or download the app, so we went with the latter. Lo and behold, the app didn’t work, so we basically had to just wing it. But not having technology available to do all the thinking for us helped us to be more alert and aware of our surroundings, and we even met some amazing people along the way who helped us get to our destination.
Lesson: What may initially appear as a misfortune may actually be a blessing in disguise. Everything works together for our good. (Romans 8:28)
My favorite stops were between the Waianapanapa (don’t ask me how to pronounce this) Black Sand Beach and the Garden of Eden, a lush botanical garden spanning nearly 30 acres of land complete with exotic nature trails, mystic waterfalls and coastal views. Both were extraordinarily beautiful and none of the pics I took do them any justice. Here’s a couple though:
And the little food stops along the road? EVERYTHING. This Hawaiian barbecue stand we stopped at was everything I never knew I needed. It was a delicious medley of smoked chicken, caramelized fried bananas, rice and veggies.
So when we finally made it to Hana, we were a little underwhelmed initially. We had been traveling all day and had seen so many amazing sights along the way that I guess we were expecting for there to be some sort of Nirvana utopian village at the end of the road (I mean, “The Road to Hana” does make Hana sound like a hella transformative place). But where we ended was this quaint little beach with a food stand, and there were local children playing around in the ocean and having a good time.
At first I was like, “This is it?” But then I realized it was all actually pretty perfect: spending an entire day with the people I loved most while experiencing God’s wonders. Learning about different cultures and lifestyles. Trying new things. Eating good food and meeting great people.
Lesson: It’s not always about the destination, it’s about what you learn during the journey.