Friday, June 15, 2012

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Going on the start of my third year here on the island that was once a dream made reality.

I sit tonight, home alone, realizing (for about the 100th time) that I haven't written anything on the island blog, and (for the 1st time) doing something about it.

Some early Springsteen demos play loudly in the background. I spent today wandering to the Golden Ponds of Ke-awa-iki and the Kona panoram that is Pueo (Owl) Bay. At Pueo, we discussed the existence of the soul, offered insights on the insight of God. Is there a god or is it just the universal, mysterious collective human spirit? What is the universe, and where did it come from? Sitting alone in the middle of a turquoise bay, surrounded by smoothed-out moon shaped white coral and black lava stones embedded with green crystal olivine, wind gusting 15-30 mph, the allure of a golden, anchialine freshwater swimming pool sitting undisturbed, and all shapes and variations of cloudbanks, transforming into black-eyed shark heads can lead one to ponder his/her very existence on this planet. No wonder things feel heavy lately.

Lately, I have been in somewhat of a rut. The future always looms, the economy seems to be forever darkening, human nature can be up and down, the very nature of happiness is fleeting.

What is it that I exactly want out of life? A nice, quiet place to call my own, surrounded by trees and trails, frequent rainshowers, a dog, friendly neighbors who keep their distance, a recording studio, and access to surfable oceanwater (I don't care what the temperature is, or if it is in the Red Triangle). That sounds pretty good (who knows what it will be in a month?)

Tonight, after a brief 30-minute workout, I found myself compelled to put these thoughts on paper as I glimpsed the setting pink and orange sun from out my front window.

I am 26, I have no mortgage, minimal bills to pay, a job, an education, and, on top of it all, an incredible family. All these things have left me with a freedom to dream still. To dream of whatever I want to have in life. It might change tomorrow, or after a year, or after twenty years, but all those things till give me the invaluable, everlasting freedom to dream.

I spent a year wallowing in materialistic filth, supported by my parents, buying spending spending and buying, spending time, money, and soul on other people caught up (but in love with) the materialistic, bar lifestyle.

It took that year for me to chase a dream - a dream of self sufficiency, of living "on my own," breathing in fresh-air, away from everything and everyone that infuriated me (unfortunately far from those who actually mattered). To seek the world and adventure, to grab it by the reigns and haul everything that life had to offer in, to leave with a backpack and end up who knows where.

I have been to the summit of the highest-peak from sea level. I have hiked endless miles across bleak lava fields, sparsely vegetated, to discover pristine oases and backcountry surf breaks. I have ridden 10-foot-plus surf at sunset and sunrise breaks. I have spent time in a.m. barrels, looking down the face of a wave as sound and space close in around me, and sunlight filters in, leaving a brilliant yellow glimmer around me as I carve through bright blue water.

I have discovered the rain forest. I have run for hundreds of miles through ferns, ohia trees, lehua blossoms, rainforest bird calls, mist and rain, and lands which fill you with such a sense of wonder, you wonder if you've left this era and wandered into the cretaceous.

I have proven that I can, well, make it in life. And one day, whenever it is, when the time in Hawaii comes to a close, I can look back and smile, and feel nothing but pride. And, as a I said earlier, I'm sure I'll have a new dream to chase then. No matter how "rough" things seem at time, and despite all the doubts and things that aren't set in stone, I have to be thankful for what I have, and I have to remember to take everything in, and remember the journey. I have worked so hard and gained so much experience. I could rant and rave about all those I feel contempt for, but why? Let them be. I have to look at myself and the things I have done and the places I have been to and the things (things that only seem to exist in dreams) that I have actually seen with my own eyes.

In short, I have lived, I have found out who I am, I have discovered new passions. I have done everything I have dreamed of to this point. When I am in a rut, I have to remember how lucky I am, how accomplished I am, and everything I have seen and done, to take in and live each and every moment of the reality (once a dream) I am in, and honestly, who knows what I'll dream of tomorrow? Not me.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Spring Swell

Hello hello -

A spring swell provided a great two days straight of pure fun up North. It was amazing - I spent more time at the beach in those two days than I had in the past year, arriving at 8 and leaving at sunset.

Spring Break was pretty limited in terms of activities. The Tsunami had still closed a few of my favorite beaches and kept the water pretty dirty over at Captain Cook.

Even more importantly, the dead fish had been attracting bigger, larger, more alive fish, known as sharks. I had been diving in some usually-clear-water-that-was-awfully-murky, only to use my best judgment and turn around and get out. As I emerged from the water, I looked out over Keauhou Bay and saw a good sized 7 foot shark. It didn't look like a tiger, but I learned later in that week that a tiger shark had in fact been spotted and was hanging around the bay. Either way, regardless of what kind of shark it was, 7 feet is bigger than me (and has a lot more teeth).

That was a huge bummer because a) tigers are relatively territorial and b) Keauhou / Heeia is my favorite surf / paddle / dive spot. It's only 5 minutes from my house. I haven't been in the water there recently.

I did do some absolutely epic diving near mile marker 4 right by my house. There is a massive cave (too massive for me to free dive into) and a less-massive but equally cool sea arch, which tunnels for about 5 feet before opening up at a depth of about 18 -20 feet.

I got to read a lot for pleasure over Spring Break as well. I read the craziest, most bizarre, most consuming, and scariest book I have ever read: House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski. I can't say I recommend it to anyone. It's pretty out there. I also started a sci-fi epic series known as Hyperion which is proving to be quite worthy.

I am very excited to come home for the summer and hang out, relax, spend some time at IBSP, and record a bunch of new music. The pictures included are from my epic weekend up North.


Monday, February 28, 2011

Forever Ago

It literally feels like it has been forever since I have posted. And there have been so many happenings since Thanksgiving that there are way too much to name. The bottom line is I have been busy as all heck with work and with a continual surge of winter swell.

Here are the highlights I can remember:

Thanksgiving: I had a most-excellent visit from the old friends James and Heather. Their visit included a memorable, rain-soaked trip to Volcano and centipede-takeover camping in Pololu Valley, and a goofing off surf-mat riding session at Kua Bay, all topped off of course with a rowdy trip to the Kona Brewery.

Christmas: I was gifted with a wonderful 10 days of visiting from the family. We had an absolute blast. Way too many memories to list.

Winter Waves: I was also graced with about a month straight of big, winter surf. I had a number of killer sessions, especially at He'eia Bay. I really figured the break out, and charged the big, overhead outside break a couple of times. I also was able to surf the break that had eluded me for 2 years: Kiholo Bay. I surfed Kiholo twice on a huge West swell and scored consistent 30-45 second rides. The place was a dream come true...I had my longboard on the outside of the lineup and simply caught everything. The ocean has been flat lately, but I have been able to do a ton of diving, and that has really filled the void of not surfing. Check out the video below of a good wave at He'eia.

Photo Highlights: I figure the best way to do the rest of this is to post some photo highlights of the past 3 months.

A beautiful sunset during the Christmas Parade in downtown Kona.

Snow on the top of Mauna Kea!

Back-to-back weekend trips to Makalawaena. I got to surf both time. The first was a small, waist-high day. The second was a picture perfect day - head high and glassy - until I landed on one of the 1,079,272 dangerous rocks there and tore the bottom of my foot open.

A beautiful Thanksgiving morning in Pololu Valley. Camping with James, Heather, and Kati was pretty awesome. James and I got rocked in the windblown, overhead surf. The night was filled with a myriad of constellations and shooting stars. We built a huge fire, and ate and ate and ate. The only downside? The pouring rain and the soaked tents proved to be a challenge. Also, the 7-inch, coiled centipede I found nestled snugly in my backpack in the morning was not a great way to start the day. We made up for it by drying out and bodysurfing some waves at Kua Bay the next day.

Our Volcano day was filled with an absolute torrential downpour. That didn't stop us from having an absolute blast and chasing the many rainbows we saw.

A great sunset after a great surf session at Kiholo Bay.

The lone rider - paddling way outside the break at Kiholo Bay and catching almost everything.

The abundant rain this winter left Kiholo - usually looking like a dry, brown desert - looking more like an emerald wonderland.

A gem of an unridden wave off of Magic's Point.

A decent left at a little point break called Tiki's. Kind of a weird break - not my favorite place to surf.

Here is a nice, long ride from Kiholo from undoubtedly one of the top 3 sessions of the winter:

A great end-of-session sunset at Kiholo Bay.

Apparently dinosaurs are beginning to take over in Hawaii.

A day of discovery: one public shoreline access sign led to another, and before I knew it, I had found a hidden cove somewhere along the Kohala coast. A hike through thick, thorny underbrush led me to this beautiful place. Birds-of-paradise could be seen flying from their cliffside retreats. Watching them was like watching some sort of mythical creature fly through the air - their long tails, pure white bodies, and graceful aerial maneuvers highlighted this trip to the cove.

A turtle resting at Kiholo.

Scoping out the break. This was part of an after-school session at Kiholo Bay. Look closely and check out the hat I am wearing...

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

2 New Surf Spots!

Just a quick update...

There was a great swell hitting the Kona Coast yesterday and immediately after work I paddled out at 2 new spots and ended up having a great time (although the first spot left me picking urchin spines out of my foot!)