One week from today…Leaving Kauai!…A long haul in Paradise…Tom’s funny expression…Thrills?

Our favorite bird aptly named Birdie, lives in our yard with his significant other, waiting for us when we open the blinds in the morning and looking at us as we have dinner each night.

It’s hard to believe that we’d make a comment about being in paradise for too long. How can that be?

Looking back, we could have spent less time in Hawaii.  Good grief, we’ve been here for eight months, certainly long enough. At the time we booked the long stay we had two reasons to be in Hawaii; one, our family coming to Big Island for Christmas, and two, taking the cruise to Australia on May 24th from Honolulu. 

The waning sun at the overlook.

Those two reasons resulted in these required extra months with the remainder on the front end in Honolulu/Waikiki, Maui, and Big Island.

For some odd reason, we assumed time in the US would be useful while doing US-type things; doctor appointments, dentist appointments, and some arbitrary paperwork which we’ve discovered we can easily do while living in other countries. We’ve never had the doctor appointments (other than my recent illness which is slightly improved again today) or the dentist appointments we’d planned. We hope to do this in Australia.

The overlook last evening.
We’ve learned a valuable lesson to never spend a straight, four months in any one location. It’s just too long for us.  We aren’t staying long enough in any one location to feel totally settled in and we aren’t leaving soon enough to give us that feeling of excitement and adventure we both so crave.

Not to contradict ourselves, we must admit that we’re booked in Bali for four months total but, in two separate two-month stints, separated by over two months. Hopefully, that will work out well for us. But, let’s face it, whatever the circumstances, overall we always have a good time, even if the only friends we made were the household help, the non-English speaking butcher at the meat market, or if available nearby, the property owner or manager.

A miniature orchid, smaller than a dime, growing along the railing at the overlook.

We’ve managed to do well without a living room only sitting outdoors all day in 100-degree heat (38C); living in countries where no one speaks English and we never made friends; living in Marrakech a year ago in the confines of the riad, the souk and the Big Square with little else to do and now this extended period in Hawaii. 

It’s like everything else in life, too much of a good thing is too much of a good thing. Tom has an expression he uses from time to time: “The most beautiful woman you’ve ever laid eyes on, there’s some guy who’s sick and tired of her “sh_ _!” He always qualifies it by saying that it goes both ways when I eyeball an adorable muscular 20 something at the beach. 

This yellow flower is not much bigger to the eye than a pea. Zooming in to capture its beauty is exhilarating.

This always makes me laugh out loud including moments ago when I asked him to repeat it. This comment reminds me that no matter how beautiful and friendly Hawaii has been it’s not perfect for us for the long haul. 

Why are we living this crazy life anyway? We could say to enrich our knowledge and experience by exploring various parts of the world. We could say to expand our personal horizons in this final hurrah of our lives to become more well rounded. We could say it’s to stretch ourselves beyond the confines of our previously pleasant but mundane lifestyle.

A colorful sunset.
The reality? I say this with a little bit of trepidation over a possible backlash from the few naysayers and haters that lurk out there. WE DO IT FOR THE THRILL!

Yes, there is a thrill in stretching oneself beyond our limits; a 4×4 day-long adventure in the mountains of Iceland; cruising through pirate-infested waters in the Gulf of Aden with specials forces on board; sitting in a tiny vehicle with 25 elephants blocking the road; dining at night in the bush with armed guards to protect us; standing outside for an hour and a half in the pouring rain in Versailles with no umbrella and yet a smile on our faces; taking the strenuous long trek to Petra to see The Treasury; chasing a fish truck up the steep road to ultimately catch it and buy an entire yellowfin tuna to watch the fisherman fillet it with a machete. We do it for these kinds of thrills.

Although this bloom appears to be a future flower its actually a growing leaf.

And then, there’s the joy and satisfaction of promoting local artists and businesses with positive reviews, stories, and photos posted here hoping that our worldwide readers will consider partaking of their services should they travel to their locations. We do it for these kinds of thrills.

Then, the other piece, however repetitive it may be for our less than interested readers, sharing our way of eating with information, links, books, and recipes, hoping that one person along the way may be able to make it work for themselves, relieving pain, improving health or eventually getting off or reducing the need for medications. We do it for these kinds of thrills.

Pretty flowers on a bush near the albatross.

We’re ready to move on from beautiful, magical, friendly Kauai. It’s been heavenly living on the Garden Island.  We’ve made many wonderful friends at social events we’ll always remember. We’ve loved watching the hatching and growth of the Laysan Albatross, a bonus we never expected. And, of course, we loved Birdie and the Redheads who’ve visited us several times a day singing their songs in an attempt to successfully gain our attention.

We move on with a sense of freedom and adventure knowing we gave Kauai everything we had to give and Kauai, in return, bestowed its wonder upon us.

Happy Saturday, worldwide friends! Thanks for hanging in there with us during this extended stay in Hawaii.  Soon, the thrills will escalate…

                                              Photo from one year ago today, May 16, 2014:

It was one year ago today that we were on the move from Marrakech, Morocco to Madeira, Portugal which resulted in a much more lengthy travel time than expected. Tom and Samir are shown in this photo wheeling our luggage at the airport. For details, please click here.

Comments and responses One week from today…Leaving Kauai!…A long haul in Paradise…Tom’s funny expression…Thrills?

  1. liz

    I say rock on redheads! (myself included!)
    You are both far more adventurous and braver than I- I love the diversity of our gorgeous planet but I am far too much of a 'home bird'.
    Thank you very very much for all the hours of photo taking, story finding, travelling and blog writing to bring these amazing experiences and parts of the world to me via the wonderful Internet. I forget now how I fund your blog originally now nearly 2 years ago I think but what a find. Lots of love and happy safe travelling onwards.

  2. Jessica

    Yes, you are definitely included in the great redheads of our time, Liz! The fact that you are a "home bird" is definitely in the majority. Few would care to tackle the challenges of us long distance flyers.

    Your kind words about our posts means so much to us both. It drives us on every single day as we sit here in the morning deciding on the topic for the day and perusing our cache of photos. The Internet is amazing. Without it, we'd have had little interest in doing what we're doing with the difficulty of booking venues and documenting our adventures.

    Thanks for writing, dear friend. Be well.

    Much love,
    Jess & Tom

  3. Unknown

    Jess & Tom,

    My wife and I just got back from a short vacation of our own with no e-mail so I hope this finds you recovering fully Jess before your upcoming cruise (I'm reading my e-mails from in reverse chronological order, can't help myself) . It sounds like you are on your way. Just wanted to comment on Tom's quip about "The most beautiful women you've ever laid eyes on. . ." So true! Tom missed his calling as a philosopher.

    Also I commend you in admitting you live this lifestyle for the thrill. That's a GOOD reason! We need to embrace the things in life that make us feel more alive. In constant competition with the human instinct of living conservatively and safe.

    Again thanks so much for your invaluable service to many of us by sharing the journal of your adventures–My wife and I will probably use it, if you don't mind, as a wonderful textbook to guide us in our own future travels.

  4. Jessica

    Richard, we hope you both had a fabulous short vacation. Tom loves your comment about his calling as a philosopher. We both laughed out loud!

    Thank you so much for your thoughtful comments. The main reason that we share our foibles and vulnerabilities is to help our readers possibly glean some ideas from our mishaps and missteps. Always feel free to use or share anything we offer here for your personal use in future travels. We're honored that you'd do so.

    Thanks for writing once again. We love hearing from you!

    Warmest regards,
    Jess & Tom

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