At the end of January, I wrapped up my three-month winter work-from-Hawaii (WFH?) adventure, and I headed back to the mainland. Since then, my tan has faded, my sun-bleached hair has darkened, my carefree island mindset has shifted, and my wardrobe has taken a drastic 180 degree turn from swimsuits to sweaters. I’ve regressed to winter-in-California-Cassidy. And while this has its own advantages, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t daydream about the endless goodness of island life.
Below, some moments, routines, and beauties of the experience that, with deep appreciation, will burn bright in my memory…
Returning to the “old” places I’d grown up visiting: Magic Sands, the Coffee Shack, Ho’okena, Turtle Beach.
Lots and lots of time with Grandma…and so much never-before-heard family lore.
Chocolate chip cookies, scones, cinnamon rolls and everything else from Kaya’s Bakery. Plus a shit ton of other good food. Like pumpkin pancakes and sliced turkey for Thanksgiving!
Swimming with humpback whales at Kiholo Bay (yes, this is a real photo!), and pods of dolphins at Two Step.
All the “new” places I hadn’t been to before: Waipio Valley, Mau’umae Beach, Kua Bay.
Momma visiting for a few weeks over the holidays.
Routine after-work solo hikes down to Kealakekua Bay.
Weekend snorkels at the Refuge followed by shmoozing with regulars and consuming ample amounts of coconut water, papaya, sardines, and chips.
Wearing t-shirts or tanks or swimsuits all day. Also a renewed love of wearing bright colors.
Visits (and adventures!) with family friends from home.
Stellar used bookstores. And ample time to read, write, be quiet, and channel my inner zen (seriously).
Celebrating turning a year older (mid-20s here I am!!!!) and Grandma turning a year older (80!).
Good weather: clean air, blue skies, tropical rainstorms, warm water, and stellar sunsets. Glorious background to everything.
(Contrary to what it seems, I was, in fact, working my butt off full time in between all this beauty.)