Aloha, Hawaii




Dear Hawaii,
It has been 7 years since we first met. I was fresh out of high school and only intended to stay for my 2-month summer vacation before university. The moment I stepped off the plane your thick tropical air filled my nose with the sweet smell of plumeria, and my soul with anticipation of the adventures. Exhale. Was I really in this place? The place I use to dream about when flipping through the pages of surfing magazines? The place I’d doodle in the margins of my notebook paper during class? Inhale. Confirmation.
Amidst the excitement was nervousness. Did I make the right decision, using up all my graduation money to buy a plane ticket here? Only time would tell. It was dark out, and all I could see were city lights and the silhouettes of your glorious mountains as we drove along the H1, a freeway I remembered catching glimpses of in random surf flicks. I’ve thought about that drive every time I’ve ever left the airport since then.
I awoke to a vision of the greenest mountains pouring into the bluest ocean. This can’t be real, I thought. I still catch myself thinking that. This must be what love at first sight feels like. And in a way, I knew. I knew you would be with me for a very long time. I knew that you’d be my home.
Hawaii, You’ve seen the worst days of my life and the best days of my life. If anybody knows me, it’s you. That’s why you know that I have to say goodbye for now. Call it wanderlust. Call it the 7-year itch. But there’s so much left in this world I that I still need to see and experience in this short life of mine. I have new mountains to climb and oceans to surf. It doesn’t mean that I love you any less.
So mahalo, Hawaii. Thank you for cradling me from adolescence to motherhood. Thank you for the laughter that only comes when I get lost in your welcoming rainforests. Thank you for catching my tears with your comforting oceans and waterfalls, and for all your rainbows that put a smile on my face. Thank you for your beautiful people and culture. Thanks for filling my days with aloha.
Aloha, Hawaii nei, until we meet again. I’ll miss you every day that I’m gone.


  1. =(
    I’m sad you’re leaving but I’m so glad to have met you! I’m so excited to hear where your next adventure will be.
    I will hope our paths cross again soon, and you can be sure we’ll come see you in your new, hopefully exotic, location!

  2. Erica!!! I wish you guys the best as you transition to the next chapter of your lives! This is such a great post…so articulate and poetic. I love it. My little family is leaving Hawaii also in just one more month…I have been planning to write a farewell post myself… after reading this…I have some big shoes to fill. =)

    Thanks for linking up. This was awesome.

  3. My goodness! What a touching letter! I seriously got chills reading it. I am looking forward to your next adventures in a new place. I wish my family could travel the way your family does. That little lady of yours is going to be well versed in the world and its many different cultures.How fabulous!

  4. That was so sweet. Makes me tear up…I will miss you, I mean just knowing you’re here…Really! 🙂
    I’ll be keeping you guys in my prayers and look forward to keeping up on what’s next…ENJOY IT ALL! aloha!

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