hawaiian nostalgia.

I recently returned from a week and a half vacation in Oahu, Hawaii and my heart is aching to be back in paradise. I haven’t taken a true vacation (where I didn’t answer a single work or school email!) in years; I’m sadly one of those overworked, overachievers–a title I’m trying to no longer wear as a badge of honor. Dealing with a variety of life stresses prior to vacation, I was in need of pure relaxation and adventure. I came back to work refreshed, full of energy, and just more content in my day-to-day life.

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Being away from work, from home and from Miami was everything I needed. I read four different books, spent lazy days on the beach, hiked a mountain ridge, to a waterfall and to a WWII bunker, and ate my way through the island in the best way possible (dreaming of poke bowls already).

During our first, full day on the island, we woke up at 4AM to eat breakfast and watch the sunrise over Kaneohe Bay; after, we hopped into the car and took the scenic drive to the North Shore, on the other side of the island. We were a bit early for our planned excursion, so we wondered around town and tried Matsumoto’s famous Shaved Ice. Then we made our way to the small harbor, boarding a eight-passenger boat and headed out to a spot about three-miles of the coast of Oahu. There, we put a snorkel mask and fins…and hopped into the clear, beautiful blue water of the open ocean and spent an hour swimming with around 15 wild, Galapagos sharks! (Okay, so maybe I got sea-sick after 50 minutes and chummed up the water a bit–but apparently that made the sharks a bit more active; really, I was just trying to make it a more interesting experience for our fellow swimmers!) It was absolutely beautiful and almost calm; I never knew sharks were so chill–when they’re not being threatened, are starving, or are being filmed for Shark Week.

Hawaii definitely relit my travel-bug, and I’m already hoping we can plan our next vacation–even if it’s just for a weekend to the Keys!

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