May 28, 2015– It’s our last day on the island. I laugh when people say they feel ready to return to routine by the end of a trip. I suppose those words meant to make the reintroduction into daily life a bit easier. Bah! They don’t.
The day is short with packing and all, but we make the very most of it. Mid-morning we head to Sea Lodge Beach. It’s tucked behind the last of the Sea Lodge condominiums (I believe Building A. We just entered Sea Lodge Beach, Princeville in Google and off we went.). Parking is a bit nonexistent, but a quick search (did I mention the convenience of having phone service on this trip compared to others?) led us to a small row of spaces under the pines in front of the other complex to your right (before you reach the signs indicating being towed as a very real possibility).
A beautiful walk along a sometimes-steep trail led us to a isolated beach occupied by three other people. The weather was overcast, but it didn’t matter…the snorkeling was possibly the most diverse I saw anywhere. In small-world fashion, I struck up conversation with a woman who ended up being a visitor from New Jersey…go figure. We lounged for a bit-he reading-me soaking up as much water time as possible. The extensive reef made entry and exit a bit trickier than other beaches, but it was well worth it. The underwater topography was exceptional or possibly eery even in the most intriguing way.
We chased the Sun and ended up at Moloa’a, our ceremony site. I’d been begging (or nagging, whichever you prefer) to return since that day, and finally we were here…on our last. By then the Sun shone brightly and we found a place under a tree for a picnic. I went on a walk on my own, taking pictures that will never compare to how it all felt, and returned back to take a swim. By now it was afternoon so our time was running low. We walked past the tree we were married near, shading a young man doing yoga now, and headed up a path that lead us to a view of the entire bay.
We walked back to gather our things slowly and I took one last dip. The water was too irresistible–crystal blue and the perfect temperature– and I can’t help but long for it now. One last look to soak it all in.
Our last order of business was a meal at the Anahola Marketplace. We’d passed it dozens of times Luke was intrigued by the Saimin so we went. The Marketplace is a not-for-profit space that is dedicated to providing a space for local products to be sold, and that includes wonderful homemade food. The seating is all outdoor and the service is so friendly. It was the perfect way to unofficially end our time here.
What can I say to close out my stories about Kauai?
On this tiny island, we were treated to an experience that I would have never dreamed possible. We met people who inspired us to do more with our lives–more meaning purposeful and for the greater good, not “productive”–and those lessons won’t be wasted. We experienced an unspoiled beauty of land and community.
You pass through an agricultural control prior to boarding the plane back to the mainland. They wish to check food and flowers; I had both. As we went through I set my items out on the conveyor belt. The inspector lifted the items and looked at me Did you get married? I nodded and she smiled a big smile and asked Where? I told her (Moloa’a). Her smile got even bigger before congratulating us and sending us on to our gate.