Hau’oli La Hanau, Zakarius!

It’s FRIDAY!!!  We made it!! Hehe.

First of all, thanks for all of your comments on yesterday’s post.  I’m continually amazed by how balanced you guys are!

And second, I totally have to apologize for how late this post is (I really did mean to post it earlier this week but realized mid-week that I had completely forgotten about a research paper deadline – I got an extension [thank goodness!] – and we just found out that the house we’ve been renting for the past three years is on the market for sale and we’ll have to move asap… so I think you can guess what I’ll be doing over Spring Break), but it is way too good not to post :).

I met Zak during my second year of college in Eugene, Oregon and was immediately drawn to his fun-loving and kind spirit.  Over the next few years, we had countless memories that none of our friends will ever forget [like that time someone tried to hurdle over the garbage bin drunk and we had to nurse him back to health with an Otter Pop and some bandaids!].

[Atop Spencer’s Butte.]

Our group of friends really enjoys the outdoors, so some of my favorite memories with them include hiking, camping, and of course – white water rafting with Zak as our guide :).  Zak was a river guide for a few years and has a deep appreciation for nature and the outdoors.

Leaving Eugene was especially rough to do because I lived with five of the most incredible men on the planet, and we were all heading to different areas around the country.

[the house + Amanda! (who coincidentally shares a birthday with Zak!)]

A few months into life on Maui, however, Ben and I started realizing how much Zak kept creeping into our minds.  We’d be on insanely gorgeous hikes and think, Zak would love this! and I wish Zak were here! Well, turns out Zak was ready for a big change in his life at that very moment, so after selling a few things and tying up some loose ends, he made one of the biggest decisions I’ve ever seen anyone make: he bought a one-way ticket to Maui.

We “housed” him (I put quotes around “housed” because he actually slept on our hammock on the porch) for a few months while he got on his feet, but really he’s set himself up perfectly and is being fully embraced by Maui!  I honestly can’t tell you how much he is meant to be here. He’s open and respectful of the island culture (something that is definitely not always true of mainlanders who move here), and he’s laid back, which makes Maui’s speed perfect for him.  We were close before, but he has become ‘ohana since he’s moved out to Maui. Literally, if he doesn’t show up to family functions, everyone asks where he is and whether they did something to scare him away.

[The relationship these two have is profound and inspiring to me.]

Time has really just flown since he’s moved here!  It is unbelievable to me that this is the third birthday Zak’s celebrating here! For his first birthday on island, we went through Hana to camp in Kipahulu.  Last year, we ran a 5K (a total spontaneous decision for him, but he rocked it!) and worked with a bunch of college buddies to buy him a ticket home.  And this year, we planned on taking the ferry over to Lana`i.

As it turned out, however, the waves from the tsunami alert washed away part of Lana`i’s harbor so the ferries weren’t running last weekend.  We decided instead to take a trip around the North side of the island instead :).  Ben, Zak and I packed some goodies and got to spend a great day together on the road and in the sunshine!  🙂  We were not disappointed!

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It was the perfect day for exploring.  Crystal clear skies, cerulean waters, and good conversation!

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We found a great spot on the cliffs to just hang, watched a couple of whales breach (they’re not usually on this side of the island), and found sand-rocks that resemble coral.

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Then we got back in the car and kept trekkin 😉

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Until we made it to the Olivine Pools.

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Apparently they’re called the Olivine Pools because the area is surrounded by the Olivine stones.  They’re embedded into all these rocks, if you look closely.

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The composition makes the pool waters look olivine as well.

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After climbing down the rocks, we found the pools to be the perfect spot for a picnic.  We swam and ate, then swam some more.  The water was perfect… crystal clear (with lots of gorgeous fish) and warmer than the ocean!  It was definitely more salty than the ocean water as well, which made it the perfect spot for Ben to try jumping from a rock into the water for the first time (he’s getting much better in the water!).  There were two swimming-sized pools, the one shown above, which was probably about 12 feet deep and wide, and another that was long and thin, and only about 7 feet deep. They were both glorious, especially when the waves crashed against the rocks and the spray hit us.

We are so fortunate to live in paradise :).

We stopped at Honolua Bay to stretch our legs and enjoy the sun a bit more, and then finished our expedition on the West side of North Maui with a stop at one of our favorite places on island: Maui Brewing Company!

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The boys ordered a couple of celebratory beers, and we all cheers!-ed to the amazing Zak, and to having such an incredible friendship.
We eventually made our way back to town and Mom and Auntie Carol met us to finish the day with a home-made dinner by Mom and frozen yogurt by Tutti Frutti!  hehe.

Although it may not have been what was planned for Zak’s birthday, it was the perfect way to celebrate one of the most important people in my life.  We are all so lucky to have you in our lives, Zak. To many more!  🙂

Have a wonderful Friday, friends!

What was your most memorable birthday experience? I’d have to say mine was my 21st birthday in Aotearoa – skydiving, hiking, and great friends!

Aloha Pumehana. Whether you’re here to find balance, wholesome recipes or inspiration, I hope you enjoy the posts.  Please subscribe to Green Plate Dinners to receive automatic updates and be the first to read new posts for free!

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One thought on “Hau’oli La Hanau, Zakarius!

  1. Danielle says:

    Love the pictures! I love it how you live in Maui and get out there and enjoy all of the beauty Maui has to offer. If (I mean when!) we move back I will be sure to be more adventurous and take advantage of all that the island has to offer 🙂

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