I wasn’t sure I was even going to write the Sunday post this week. I wrote two posts last week, but in light of what’s been happening back on the mainland, they both seemed very insignificant and unworthy compared to the bigger picture so I let them go. I re-published a former post instead, just to put something up, but my heart wasn’t much into doing that either. I apologize.
The best word to describe how this past week has felt for us is surreal. Here we are, out in the middle of the ocean, enjoying beautiful weather (most of the time), going to the beach, shopping at the farmers market, and so forth while over on the mainland what feels like a battle for the soul of our country is being waged. We have all been following closely what’s been happening and it’s frankly been shocking and discouraging at times – how did we ever let things go for so long to get to this? But, we’ve felt hope too, that the bandage has finally been ripped off and people are now seeing a very ugly wound that’s been festering for too long. Change is in the air, but whether it can overcome what exists now still remains a question. So much work needs to be done, and the rot is deep.
YaYu is a rock – she has researched and written to her friends and others of ways to get involved and contribute, even if they are stuck inside or living in the middle of nowhere. She and Brett made posters and participated in yesterday’s #BLM protest in Lihue. We’ve been having some good discussions these past few days about racism and of ways we can all go forward, do better, and change. We are not giving up – we love our country, and refuse to allow authoritarianism, violence, and hatred to gain an even greater foothold than they already have.
This morning I am:
- Reading: I finished American Dirt and am about half-way through The Prisoner of Azkaban. There is a lot of controversy surrounding American Dirt, and I understand the reasons for the complaints and empathize with them, but it was still a good read. I am greatly looking forward to getting my copy of The Daughters of Erietown, by Connie Shultz, on Tuesday (the book’s release day), and I just started Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, by Bryan Stevenson. I am also near the top of the waitlist for another couple of books I’ve had on hold at the library.
- Listening to: So far this morning has been a super quiet – Brett is reading, YaYu is still sleeping, and instead of the strong winds we’ve had the past couple of days noisily blowing everything around outside, there’s just a quiet breeze. It’s rained recently, and the sky is overcast, so it may be mostly an indoor day. One rooster just started up, but otherwise, it’s very peaceful – my favorite kind of morning.
- Watching: Brett and I are now in the middle of Line of Duty (Season 3 out of five), and YaYu and I started watching Dead to Me this past week. I have already watched the first season but have forgotten a lot of it, and I’m looking forward to the new season that’s now available. I think all three of us have decided to watch Ozark when we’re done with our current shows.
- Cooking: We’re continuing to use what we have on hand this week as other than a trip to the farmers’ market, we’re not going food shopping until the week after next. YaYu is making pork and vegetable fried rice for our dinner tonight, and other things we plan to have this week are another Mississippi pot roast; leftover open-faced pot roast sandwiches along with coleslaw; zucchini frittata and Italian sausages; tuna melts (that didn’t get made last week) with crudités; and one-pan pasta. This past Thursday I baked a loaf of zucchini bread; we’ll finish that tonight and then I’m going to make a chocolate-orange poke cake. We’ve all gotten very good about only having one small piece of cake/bread after dinner for a daily sweets fix.
The surf was pounding at Brenneke this week, but there were still plenty of daring boogie boarders and body surfers. We also spotted several turtles again, totally unfazed by the pounding waves.
- Happy I accomplished this past week: We kept busy this past week in spite of hot and humid weather on some days and rainy, windy weather on others. I filled in everything on my daily activity card, including walking 2 to 2.5 miles on six days. We made it to the beach twice, including an afternoon out at Barking Sands last Sunday afternoon.
- Looking forward to next week: I have an appointment with my new doctor tomorrow and hope to get some ideas for dealing with my recurring stomach issues. My new glasses should be ready this week as well. We’re looking forward to more good walks and hopefully two trips to the beach (at least).
The views from the eastside beach path never disappoint.
- Thinking of good things that happened: Our storage items were picked up from Joan’s basement last Tuesday and are on their way over to Hawaii, with a timeframe of four to six weeks before delivery. The invoice also arrived and the final cost is nearly $2000 less than the original estimate! Hallelujah!! We had two great trips to the beach this past week, and the beach on the base at Barking Sands was as beautiful as ever – we plan to go back soon as it’s only a 30-minute drive away now (versus well over an hour like it was previously). We also discovered a new (to us) walking path in Kalaheo, around the Kukuiolono Park and Golf Course. WenYu’s graduation package had been lost but was found and delivered on Friday. Our living room rug arrived on Friday as well and once in place pulled everything in the room together.
- Thinking of frugal things we did: We had a spend-free week except for last Wednesday when I bought a new pair of slippers to replace the ones I wore out, we all got new cloth masks (our paper ones ran out), and we went to the farmers’ market. I was happy to see that the price of OluKai slippers hadn’t changed from when I bought my last pair four years ago. I still need to get a cheap pair of Locals slippers next time we’re at Walmart (to wear to the beach), but otherwise, both Brett and I are now set for footwear for the next several years. We put $2 into the change/$1 bill jar, and I earned 751 Swagbucks (from taking several high-point surveys).
- Grateful for: We are beyond grateful that the cost of getting our stuff back over to Hawaii will be no more than what we paid sending it over to Portland in 2018. The original estimate scared us to death because it would have pushed us beyond our relocation savings. That account is now nearly empty, but that’s what it was there for.
- Bonus question: What’s personally been the hardest part of settling back on Kaua’i? Honestly, we’ve had a very easy time of physically getting settled here, and with the arrival of our things from the mainland, we’ll be set. It’s been annoying at times not having our stuff, but we’ve managed – Brett and I learned a lot during our time on the road about improvising when things we needed were not available. The most difficult part of settling back here for me has been coming to terms with knowing we’re not going anywhere for the next couple of years. I’m definitely still not to the acceptance stage with that. I have a huge desire to continue to travel, and desperately want to see the grandkids again, but for the time being, I am going to have to be content with just dreaming and planning, and enjoying being on Kaua’i again. If I can’t go anywhere, this is a pretty nice place to be.
As much as we are enjoying having YaYu with us this summer, I did have to talk with her this past week about the number of clothes she has been putting into the wash each day – on Wednesday, I washed and hung up 24 pieces of clothing, and 18 of them were hers (I had just washed everything two days earlier)! Most laundry days have similar ratios of her clothes to ours. She seems to change her clothes two to three times a day, and I asked her to see if there were some things she could wear a couple of days in a row (like her nightwear and some of her exercise things). We have a small washer now, and a small drying rack, so I’m hoping she’ll help out a little more, at least by not creating so much that needs to be washed. I used to only have to do laundry once a week; these days I’ve been doing a load almost daily because the pile grows so quickly and I need to make sure I have enough room on the rack for everything. We do have a dryer, but I prefer line drying here.
Above are a few more hibiscus pictures from when we’ve been out and about. The one unfurling was located beside the beach path, and was very pale pink with slightly darker pink edges – I snapped a picture because I knew it would be gone by the time we got back. The pink changing to yellow on the outer petal is one we have seen before, but the one above was perhaps more stunning and very big. I have been reading about all the different colors and varieties of hibiscus this past week. They are a big thing in Florida and there are some amazing variations that have been created.
That’s a wrap! I hope it was a good if not a great week for all of you, with lots of good things happening in your lives, lots of things accomplished, good books to read, and things to look forward to this coming week. Have things opened up where you live? It’s still going slowly here, and masks for everyone remain de rigueur.