Busy bee

August 30, 2010

For the first time in years, life is super busy! I almost forgot that I do my best work when my life is full. When I don’t have time to procrastinate, I become much better at life in general. See, even right now I’m writing a post in the few hours I have between work and class, whereas if I hadn’t had class, i would likely be laying on my bed watching bad tv shows online. Although that does sound nice…..

I have a dear friend from high school visiting for a few days, and I once again get to use my visitors as an excuse to go back into tourist mode. We went to the north shore and saw some awesome seaturtles and a cute couple getting wedding photos taken. I got kinda sentimental with the wedding photos.

Unfortunately, wildlife and I didn’t do so well together that day. While peering over the edge of some slippery wet rocks info the ocean below (trying to see some seaturtles that were already on the beach behind me), I slipped, fell, and narrowly escaped losing my iPhone, my leather rainbows, and my own life, in the depths below. Thankfully my phone and sandals are safe, the skin on my knee being the only victim of my clumsiness.

Later that night, as my friend and I got ready for bed after our day of adventuring, a prehistoric sized cockroach flew into my room, and swarmed around my head (yes, I know that one cockroach can’t be a swarm, but it felt like one). Naturally, I ran from the room screaming, but not without tripping over my own feet and carpet-burning my already injured knee. Eventually I got it together enough to kill it with like half a can of raid.

I swear, I’m normally not a clutz.

MmmmMacrobiotic!

August 8, 2010

A friend of mine works at a macrobiotic restaurant here in Honolulu called Hale, and I finally got a chance to check it out today! It’s hidden downtown next to Walmart, and judging by the area, I was expecting the place to be pretty rustic. I was pleasantly surprised, as the pictures below will show, the place is totally elegant. Not only that, but the food was awesome! I got a Satay curry, and Filippo got an amazing vegan burger…I’m looking forward to the next visit, to say the least!

Transition Time Again

August 7, 2010

We’ve moved again! It’s too bad I didn’t keep up blogging while in the last place, but we had no internet, and my posts would have mostly consisted of complaining about stinky cat litter, chanting neighbors, and a psycho landlord. So I’ll just leave all that complaining behind me as we move on to this new, wonderful place.

The house we’re in now is up on the side of a ridgeline, overlooking Honolulu and Waikiki. It’s super close to work for me, and I get to completely avoid traffic. We have beautiful views, and the house itself is great. There’s a lot of living space, indoor and outdoor, a large kitchen, and some really cool architectural features. Our room is a large master bedroom with a walk-through closet to the bathroom. We have three other house-mates who are very easy to live with and get along with so far. Everybody works full-time and isn’t home much, and even when we’re all home, we’re not stepping on each other’s toes. It’s seeming like a really great living situation, and affordable too!

We’ve been moved in for a week now, and we’re starting to tackle the dilemma of having no furniture. We got a mattress from one of the roommates that got a new one, there was a low bookshelf left here from the previous tenants, and we have a little table that we bought a while ago. But that’s it! I need to start browsing thrift stores for pieces. I really wish I knew someone here who did interior decorating, because my own instincts don’t get me far.

I started my official full-time schedule this week, and it’s been a bit of a struggle maintaining my energy! I work from 6:30-3, and when  get home I’m just pooped. I’ve started a habit of drinking coffee when I get home, but the energy only lasts me a couple of hours. I need to start a good exercise routine, because that’s one thing I know will get me feeling better. It’ just that when you’re always tired, it’s hard to get motivated to exercise!

Anyway, that’s enough for now. Everyone come visit me please. I have one friend coming to visit at the end of August, and I’m so excited! Come visit Erin in paradise!

Round Top

July 25, 2010

I love having guests, because it gives us an excuse to do all the fun stuff we haven’t made time for! Like going to Round Top to see the amazing views!

It stinks. It’s name is rejic.

I know I’m extremely lucky to live in Hawaii…but lately I’ve found myself complaining too much and appreciating too little, so I think it’s the perfect time for me to return home for a week.

It’s been 8 months since I was last here, and I believe it may be the longest I’ve stayed away from home. It’s certainly the longest I’ve been away from my dog, but I’m relieved to say that he is treating me with as much love as ever. He didn’t forget me, he isn’t mad at me…it’s like as soon as I got home he forgot I had left. I love dogs.

The feeling of coming home after a long absence is wonderful. I’m appreciating the little things, like the familiar, unique sound of the shower turning on in the next room, the crunch of someone walking through the gravel outside, tractors making their way through the vineyard across the street. Somehow, spending the whole day lounging around my parents house doesn’t feel lazy and unproductive like it does in our apartment. Maybe it’s from all of the summers I spent reading at home, moving from the couch to the bed, to my parents bed, back to the couch…It’s perfectly acceptable to indulge in a lazy summer afternoon of doing nothing.

While I don’t have any desire to move back here, I really do wish Hawaii was closer to California. Sometimes I fell like most of the people who have moved to Hawaii are running away from something, but I have nothing to run from. I love my family and friends in California, and throughout the greater “mainland”, and I hate being so far away.

So while I’ve been here (with unlimited internet access!), I’ve been looking into schooling options. I found that at the University of Hawaii, they have a program that is perfect for people like me, i.e. those who have random bachelors degrees, but are now interested in the medical field. If you get accepted to this program, you do one really intense year of nursing school, after which you can take the exams to become an RN. Then, you’re automatically accepted into their Master’s program in nursing to become a Nurse Practitioner. It sounds pretty sweet to me.

The only problem is the price. The first year alone is $40,000. And that’s if I get Hawaii residency. On the other hand, I found the exact same program at CSU Long Beach, and it only costs $10,000 for the first year. I never wanted to live in Southern California, but it would be on the beach, and I’d be close to my sister, grandparents, and cousins…not to mention many friends who have moved down there.

I think I’ve decided to apply to both programs. I’ll let fate determine where I’ll live. I wouldn’t be starting either program until August 2011, so even if I did move back to Cali, it would be after a nice long period in Hawaii, almost two years.

For now, I’m at home-sweet-home. On Thursday I’ll return to paradise, hopefully with a greater appreciation for my nearly-perfect life there. Did I mention I was offered a full-time job at the hospital? Quit complaining, Erin. Life is great.

Since moving to the new place in town, interenet access is limited. It sounds rediculous that I would have better internet access in the country than I do in the city… The owner of the apartment we’re in didn’t have internet, and since it’s temporary, we don’t want to invest in getting it. I’ve thought of getting one of those go-anywhere wireless plans, but I work to much to figure out which one to get!

It’s been great being so close to work. It’s just a 20 minute drive over the Pali Hwy. But now that I’m closer, I get called in to work ALL THE TIME. I’m not really complaining though, because I’ve been getting overtime, and It’s so nice to not stress over money for now. But I’m currently on day 4 of working 7 days in a row, so I might have a different opinion in  couple of days!

We hiked in Kahala valley last weekend, so here’s some pictures:

The Bunkers

Our first destination: Swimming hole

Destination 2: Rope swing

just before the flip

Flip's big spash!

Destination 3: The tree lounge

Destination....drop of water??

Funghi!!!

Peak-a-Boo Views

A bamboo forest...or is it a field?

One more cool plant...

After 6 hours of hiking, we finally make our way out of the wilderness!

 So there’s a photo update! Filippo is off hiking again today, and now I’m headed back to the hospital for hours 41-48 this week!

This post made possible by the awesome internet connection at the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf!

Chapter II: Townies

April 30, 2010

Chapter one was a great chapter. I am going to miss the North Shore Yoga Coop, the Waialua Farmer’s Market, the friendly people at the Waialua Public Library, and our own private beach.

But I’m ready for this new chapter.

Our new place is acutally the same apartment we had planned on living in when before we got to Hawaii. A friend of a friend has an apartment he hardly uses, and he has agreed to let us live here at a discounted price for two months, while we look for the perfect place in the perfect location at the perfect price.

The apartment is at the base of the Diamond Head crater, in a very scenic area. The beach is just a couple of blocks away, and a large park separates us from Waikiki. It’s a second story corner apartment with lots of trees and greenery surrounding it. It’s a one bedroom, and we get to keep it all to ourselves, except for a shy cat who lives with us.

I’m anticipating that chapter two will involve lots of exploring the neighborhood, weeknight events in waikiki and honolulu, and more apartment searching. It’s going to be a lot of fun. Last night I found a book club and a cooking club to join, because when you live in a city you have access to these kinds of things! I’m so excited to have so much to do! Now I just need to find some dancing classes, a new farmer’s market, and yoga.

It’s going to be exciting!!!

The landlord of the perfect studio didn’t pick us….He picked some other couple who saw the place before us. It’s a bit like being rejected after a job interview, except that he didn’t really interview us. Filippo did his best to sell our wonderfulness to him, but he must have had something else in mind. I hope the people he did pick turn out to be crackheads or something…just kidding…sort of.

Filippo played the rejection voicemail for me as I was waking up this morning. I responded by curling up into the fetal position facing the wall. I just want to give up, but I can’t.

So the search continues. I had my hopes up so high for that one that I stopped searching for good alternatives. Of course I only took one day off of the search, and now I’m back at it, so I’m sure no great opportunities will go unnoticed because I didn’t search yesterday.

But I am finding it harder to search today. I think I’m losing my stamina. I don’t want to settle for a place that doesn’t meet my criteria, but my options are limited, and I only have 4 days. I’m started to think that we’re just screwed.

I’m trying to tell myself that if this place rejected us, there must be some better place in store…but time is running out!

We’ve found a new place we love in Manoa. It’s in the cutest hillside neighborhood, and it has wonderful character. It’s a studio, but a large one with separate kitchen and bathroom, and a walk-in closet. It’s fully furnished, and tastefully, with real furniture (not just a matress on the floor and plastic drawers…I’m talking real wood).

Today we’ll find out if it is ours…and I really hope it is! The location is perfect, the price is right, the timing is good. My fingers are crossed!