Monday, July 21, 2014

Hawaii 2014 (aka July Adventures Part II)

Hawai'i is like a different world. Everything is so much more colorful and bright there, even when the sky is cloudy and the rain is falling. I still missed the Philippines, even during my week in paradise, but the weather was so warm and humid and there were so many local Filipinos there that it was basically the next best thing. The week was filled with adventures from jumping off any surface above the water to swimming in basically any body of liquid that looked swim-able, from eating poke bowls for breakfast, lunch, and dinner until I literally almost threw up to stopping by farmer's markets and roadside stands on the hunt for the tropical fruits we can't find back home.

Kaua'i is definitely my favorite island out of the four I've been to. It's been left untouched enough that it's still got that natural vibe, but there's enough tourism to give it a modern touch. It's gorgeous and the atmosphere is so chill.

Waikiki Beach has become incredibly ugly over the years- it's a troll trap with a couple of bright points. (The Honolulu Night Market on Cooke Street once a month is SICK. Like a Hawaiian version of Off the Grid. Try the Ahi Katsu at Fresh Catch. Seriously.) The juxtaposition of the homeless and starving next to some of the wealthiest in the world vacationing is ironic in such an ugly way. The next time I see O'ahu, I don't want to set foot on Honolulu unless I'm coming or leaving. North Shore is the place to be on that island.

It honestly drives me crazy to stay in Hawai'i because all I can think about is the what-if's of if I had picked University of Hawai'i over UC Santa Barbara. I see so much of myself in Hawaiian culture (and I would fit in with all my fellow brown people.) But it's not hard to imagine going insane being stuck on the island too. I try not to think about it because it bothers the hell out of me.

Anyway, this was a really nice trip, despite the typical family arguments and the fact that the local radio stations play the same five island jams over and over all day. I love being mistaken for a local there, even though it's mostly because of my tan. In another world, I could see myself living in Hawai'i. Maybe someday.

Check out my flickr album to see the tons of pictures that didn't quite make my blog cut and keep an eye on my youtube channel for more GoPro videos.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Philippines 2014 (aka July Adventures Part I)

I just got home this morning and I'm jet-lagged and exhausted. I'm already wondering when I'll get the opportunity to go back home again. This trip was everything I wanted and more. But I think this is one of those times when you let the pictures tell the story.

For more Philippines adventure goodness, go ahead and head over to my flickr to see some things that didn't make the cut.