23 Aug 2017
Recently, I celebrated my 60th birthday by going on a once in a lifetime trip to Hawaii with my husband and our two best friends.
My friend’s husband and I were geared up for an adventure-filled vacation. My husband and my best friend urged rest and relaxation. So our trip included both.
In Maui, we prepared for our early morning trip to the top of Haleakala Volcano to see the sunrise. We were cautioned to wear warm clothing for the sunrise at 10,000 feet! And then we planned to bike down the volcano from near the summit to the bottom of the volcano.
Because of the time change, getting up at 2a.m. for the tour wasn’t all that hard, but persuading the rest-and-relaxation duo of the coolness of getting up there at sunrise (and the 40 degree weather) was hard! But we did it!
Then getting on the bikes took a little persuading, as we all looked at the winding roads down the volcano. The worry was braking, not pedaling… But we did it!
Then there was wonderful R&R… We went to a Luau, had shaved ice – a Hawaiian staple (the best is at Ululani’s!).
Two days later, it was adventure time again. We wanted to see The Road to Hana: a hair-raising trip around the edge of Maui with twists and turns and one-lane bridges. Our tour guide didn’t stop there, though. He took us to some beautiful waterfalls and pools, and even though they were hard to get to, we triumphed and swam in the very very very cold water. We were more adventurous than some of the 20- and 30-year-olds who were on the trip with us!
Our adventure continued on the Big Island with a trip to see the flowing lava of Mount Kilauea. This required a wake-up time of 3a.m. and a drive of 90 minutes. And then… the walk. We had to walk almost 4 miles (partially in darkness with flashlights) over old bumpy and twisted lava rocks to the location of the flowing lava that morning. And we did it!
It was definitely worth it! We actually got up close and personal (by about 10 feet) to actual flowing lava. It was so hot in the area that, at first, no one wanted to get close. But then we realized we were there in a probably once in a lifetime view of actual flowing lava. So, we did it!
The 3 plus mile hike back over the lava rocks was completely draining. My bestie actually fell a couple of times, but she bounced back up with boundless enthusiasm and we made it all the way back to the car: thankful for the excitement and experience. (Note: My friend, unbeknownst to us, had lacerated her leg during her fall, but she didn’t complain, she didn’t stop walking… she just did it!)
We had lots of other adventures during our trip. At our last dinner at The Pig and the Lady in Honolulu, we realized that we had undertaken adventures that others our age would have passed up. We had a drink – the Golden Pig – to celebrate… our steeliness? Our adventurousness? Our stupidity? … And we vowed to continue to push past our brains and go with our muscles!