Paradise Island

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Yes.  Hawaii is literally paradise.

After roughly 6 days on Oahu, I can say with a certain degree of certainty that paradise is real.  It doesn’t come cheap, and you have to compete with thousands of other paradise-seekers, but paradise can indeed be found there.

I never considered myself the type that would stay in a resort. But age, fatherhood, and marriage can change one’s perspectives on many things, including the preferred type of accommodation for a family with a two-year old, and a wife who enjoys the finer things that backpacking doesn’t include.  I have nothing against backpacking nor anything against my wife.  My tastes have simply changed over time.

‘Did you go surfing?’

‘No.’

‘Well, you missed a great opportunity.’

That was the brief conversation I had with someone today.

I like surfing, even though I have only tried it twice in my life.  But I also love my son, who can’t surf yet, and is just trying not to drown while wading around in the kiddie pool with water wings. And I love my wife who would prefer other things to surfing.

So getting some surf lessons wasn’t high on my priority list, and I’m totally fine with that.  In short, I wouldn’t consider any time in Hawaii a missed opportunity of any kind, but rather, a fortunate experience just to be there.

I ate too much.

I applied plenty of sunscreen to my white skin.

I enjoyed discounted shopping.

I went to the popular touristy spots.

I had a bloody fantastic time.

So there, mister missed opportunity.

 

Pork Cutlet and an Old Town

 

Those random drives to places I’ve not been yet.

Strolling through a rural, revived Japanese town.  A new book shop and cafe, some tea stores, the feel of a place that should be forgotten, but has somehow been renewed and reconsidered.  Small rivers teeming with fish, tiled roofs, sliding screen doors, cobbled streets, a procession of Porsches, one to nine.

A plate of deep-fried pork cutlet, dripped in miso sauce, surrounded by small dishes: a cabbage salad, miso soup, white rice, devil’s tongue slabs and yuzu sauce, sweet red bean paste of a tofu shape and consistency; watermelon.  Simple.  Delightful. Tasty.  Filling.

The boy slurps noodles, picks at my cutlet, and is fed pumpkin and mushroom tempura.

Later, in a quaint ice cream shop, she eats a crepe with chocolate ice cream, while I have raspberries and rare cheese and vanilla ice cream in a waffle cone.

We buy onions, potatoes, and carrots at a roadside farmers market.  I dodge shoppers. The boy wants to carry the basket.  I resist the urge to argue with him that he’s going to just give it to his mother to carry soon anyways, and why don’t I just carry it for him?

Obviously not going to happen.

I drool at Ducatis and Ninjas, but – aware of the heat and the traffic –  am not so envious. Just a little.  I consider looking at bikes in shops on the way back, but prefer to keep driving.

I walk to the store later.  I get gyoza and lettuce.  I make salad, rice and gyoza.  The boy loves it and offers to share the last one.  I marvel at his ability as a two-year old to consider other peoples feelings.

I appreciate it all.

 

Auspiciousness and Grilled Meat

 

I love it when numbers line up.

2222.  Thats four two’s.  I don’t know, it’s just nice.

BBQ meat at your table.  Don’t think twice!!

With your favourite people?  The best!

OK, sign me up. I can’t get enough!

Things can line up pretty well sometimes,

I think, I’m blessed.

Take it for granted no way,

No second guess.

Challenges spring,

Like every day,

It’s a thing,

to let it pass,

embrace the good times fast,

what you enjoy today,

tomorrow is past.

If I don’t live now,

when is best?

Carnivorous, yes,

lover of veggies,

but i digress,

love is best,

now is best.

Love.

 

Now.

Always.

For everything.