Vacuuming my ceiling wondering ... “what is going on?” (Brian Regan) ... “how do people live like this?” (Mallory), seeing the hairs, sand, spiders and cockroaches zoom up my vacuum like I was the queen of their galaxy; I never thought I’d see the day when I would so purposefully smash a cockroach with my bare palm. There I was on my naked knees kneeling on that sticky tile and itchy carpet, mixing various mostly-empty bottles of cleaners and tilting the vacuum in new ways to avoid deepened blisters as I attempted to achieve even a sub-fraction of the word “clean;” there I was, knowing what Will would say, humming sporadic “Dusty Road” lines and hearing the waves hit that volcanic ashen wall outside my apartment-home in between her breaths. There I was walking through those outdoor hallways, or finding myself in unbelievably, wonderfully ridiculous tropical storms, breathless for one reason or another. There I was standing near the milk debating debating debating about the nine dollar price tag; love you, Ma, thanks for the sound advice. There I was hiking through mud and brush up an eight mile-long trail, waiting for Jack and Hurley and Kate to burst through the foliage and surprise me on my way to carry out Number Eight on My Bucket List. There I was in that freshwater pool, after hitting my legs on those rocks, feeling grateful and happy and cold as the sun hid, because it didn’t matter—I finally crossed my dream of swimming in a waterfall pool off The List. There I was photo machen-ing that sunset, eating a Mahi Mahi sandwich and choco manula pie or something as I FROZE [I have been colder here in Hawaii than I have in all my days in Utah. What a joke.]. There I was sitting beneath those stars, watching the clouds travel across at light-speed [what is it? I should know this, bad Physical Science Student, Tawny: 3 x 108 ?], night-day-dreaming of my remarkable friend in Brasil, again, hearing the ocean in my backyard. There I was.
Here I am.
I keep reminding myself: You are in Hawaii.
It hasn’t sunk in. I don’t think it will. But I am loving living and breathing in such a stunning place. Blessed.
Here are a bunch of wildly overdue photos.