Letting Go

This memorial is a reminder of one of the biggest losses in US history.

Sometimes loss is more about letting go than anything else. Letting go of what we can't control and embracing change where we can. But sometimes we have to fight the change, or resist, when we don't agree with something.

I've said this before, but I'll say it again: the reason my blog has been quiet lately is purely political in nature. I have been busy fighting for rights – human rights, animal rights, environmental concerns. As an individual with Muslim and Middle Eastern friends, I felt I must be involved when the president introduced his Middle Eastern ban (among other things). And maybe not everyone agrees that this "war" is mine to wage; however, that is no one's choice but my own to make.

The other reason I've been quiet is that I've been working on and developing my vacation plan for Hawaii. As it turns out, when you are protesting all weekend (every weekend), sick during the week (like legit sick – taking medicine sick), and intensely planning a trip to Hawaii (that I will, eventually, intensely blog about), days, hours, and moments quickly disappear.

I guess it's another type of loss – a loss of time.

But is it really?

I have spent hours researching and meticulously planning every aspect of this trip to Hawaii ever since I booked our flight in September. I have put countless hours into planning and spent more time working out the details of this trip than I have on any other vacation I have ever taken in my entire life. And yet, if I learned anything from the ten hours I spent on Amtrak this past winter planning my trip to Quebec City and Montreal, it will all be worth it in the end. With so much in depth research, my hope is that no longer will I feel the desperate need to return to a place simply because I couldn't fit everything into my itinerary. In fact, I have begun mapping out every activity, considering the best routes and traffic, and scraping any ideas that don't fit neatly into my timeline. By doing this, my husband and I will have more time to enjoy those activities that do fit.

And so, with that said, I present to you my itinerary, noting that I am receiving four more guide books before we go which may or may not alter it:

Day 0 –
• Flight from ATL to LAX to OGG
• First night at Kula Lodge

We're arriving late, so we probably won't do much aside from sleep. :)

Day 1 –
• Drive to the summit of Haleakala National Park for sunrise.
• Return to Kula Lodge for breakfast
• Check out the view from the Ali’i Kula Lavender fields.
• Then walk through Maui Tropical Plantation
• Lunch reservations for The Mill House (food provided by local farmers)
• End the day at the Hilton Grand Wailea
• Dinner reservations at Humuhumu (the hotel's restaurant)

Day 2 –
• Taking a tour of the entire Hana Highway (front and back)with a tour guide
• Ice cream in a coconut shell at Coconut Glen's!
• Ending the evening with a beer from the Maui Brewing Company (they are open until 10PM!)

Day 3 –
• Free breakfast at the Hilton Grand Wailea
• a visit to the Maui Ocean Center (aquarium)
• Then onwards to check in at the Hyatt Regency Maui
• Wedding vow renewal (5 years!) at the Old Lahaina Luau
• Then, of course, partying it up at the Old Lahaina Luau

Day 4 –
• Exploring the northwest corner of Maui (Nakalele Blowhole) for sunrise
• Returning our rental car and checking out Banyan Tree Park
• Shaved ice at Ululani's?
• Midday, we board the Expedition ferry to Lana'i where we will meet up with our tour guide.
• Dinner at Lana'i Grill.
• Finally sleep! At the Dreams Come True Inn.

Day 5 –
• Early flight to Molokai
• Checking out Coconut Grove (from a distance!)
• Making leis at the Molokai Plumeria Farm
• Eating delicious bread from Kanemitsu Bakery
• And just getting the overall island experience
• Ending with an early evening flight to HNL
• Dinner somewhere maybe?
• Check in at The Royal Hawaiian before calling it a "night"

Day 6 –
• First stop: USS Arizona and Pearl Harbor
• Then, on to the Punchbowl memorial
• And maybe Iolani Palace (was the queen of Hawaii's home until the 1950s)
• See the view from both the Pali & Tantalus Lookouts
• Dinner reservations at Sarento's Top of the "I" (but we may have to cancel. So many things I want to see and do!)
• Watch the Hilton Village Waikiki fireworks
• And, finally, drinks and dessert at Bali Steak & Seafood (We have a $15 credit.)

Day 7 –
• Sunrise at Halona Blowhole
• Breakfast at Orchids
• Take in beautiful beach views
• Daydream at the Byodo-In Temple
• Taste different flavors of macadamia nuts at the Tropical Farms
• Imagine life in a movie at the Kualoa Ranch
• Check-in to the Turtle Bay Resort
• Buy donuts (malasada?) from Ted's Bakery

Day 8 –
• See huge waves at the Banzai Pipeline (Because winter.)
• Get a dole whip from the Dole Plantation (I can't go to Hawaii and not get one!)
• Sadly, board flight for home (I think I could easily fill another week with activities! Vacations always end far too soon!)

What are your thoughts on "letting go" and choosing to make room in your life for better or different things? Even if you haven't felt the need to speak up after an election or meticulously plan a vacation, has there ever been a time in your life when change seemed inevitable but ended up benefiting you in the long-run? And, if you've ever been to Hawaii, do you have any suggestions/recommendations or alterations that you would suggest I make to my itinerary?

* I'm taking part in #LoveBlog2017. Feel free to join in!
•• And linking up to #CityTripping.

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