Let me start by stating the obvious… We miss home!! Ahhh! We had such a great trip back, thanks to everyone in our families and all of our friends. We started on Oahu where the boys played a show at the Pipeline. Anuhea opened for them with her lovely songbird voice, her mean chops on the guitar, and her talented band. What a sweetheart that girl is. Playing at the Pipeline is like having a reunion each and every time. The backstage is always packed with friends and family from all over the islands. Only thing is that there isn’t really a place to watch from because they pack it in like sardines, but everyone had a great time, so it’s all good. Wait, wait, wait! Hold on, I forgot how it REALLY started! We got off the flight, checked in to the hotel and jumped in the water. Then Kaleo got a call from Peni from Natural Vibrations. They were playing Hot Hawaiian Nights on the rooftop of some restaurant. Of COURSE we went! It was like our own private show because they only let so many people in since they were filming. It was so nice to see Natty Vibes and their families… Kaleo and I snuck out before the show was over (we are getting really good at that!) and called it an early-ish night. The next morning, Remy, Whitney and I walked down to the end of Waikiki by the zoo and I led a mini-yoga class on the beach. Until we were interrupted by a flatbed truck backing up with the back-up-beeps and everything. Awesome, guys! ANyway, we consistently go to Dukes when we are home. I don’t know if it is necessarily for the food, but the atmosphere is great. You sit there with friends and family and talk and eat sashimi while enjoying a drink, but the real allure is that at any moment, you can just walk out to the sand, drop your clothes and jump in the water! Or pick up a board and paddle out, right there! And then when you’re pau, just shower off (or not), and walk back up to your table, barefoot and happy. Ahhhh, I miss home!
We got to see so many people while we were on Oahu. Uncle Danny and Nancy, my dad and Renee (and the doggies! Dylan and Sydney), and my dear friend Galit and her beautiful daughter, Alegria. I have been friends with Galit since we both moved to Oahu during our Junior year of high school. I came from the Big Island and she came from Boston via Germany and Spain. We were both the new kids and therefore became extremely close. After high school, she went to Japan and then away to fashion design school in Spain and we lost contact… Until now! I am so, so grateful to have found her again, as she has always been one of my closest friends. And she is exactly the same as she always was, absolutely beautiful. Now if only I could see Emma when I go home… But alas, she is on Kauai. I always knew my little earthchild Em would end up there, happily married with an organic garden and looking the exact same as she did when she was 20. Like seriously, the same. But with even better hair, if you can believe it.
So Oahu was great. We miss all of you there so much. Then we headed over to Kona. Our main goals for coming home to Kona after the show was to see Delta, attend the Campbell/Stevenson wedding, and to visit family. Unfortunately, our dear friend Delta sadly passed away four days before we made it home. He had been battling cancer since the end of January, and it finally took over. He was so strong, and such a positive icon for the community. He will be so greatly missed by everyone he knew, throughout the islands and beyond. Our hearts go out to Juanita, Amber, and all of his family and friends. We love you Braddah Delts. FBI for life.
The day after we arrived in Kona there was a bachelor/bachelorette party for Sam and Keli. Although the details were a little unclear, we figured out that the guys were to dress up as ridiculous tourists, and the girls were to dress as pirate/pinup girls, or something to that effect. Kaleo was supposed to meet the guys at 3 (!!) to start their festivities. I got ready at mom’s house with Whitney and Remy, and we went down to Kona Inn to meet up with all the pirate pinup girls. Arrrggghhh! We showed up and there were about 30 girls dressed in the best costumes ever! I had no idea sleepy little Kona had all of those awesome outfits. The idea was that Keli had to cross a bunch of scavenger hunt type things off a list. When those were done we would surprise her with… Sam! All of the guys would be meeting us at On The Rocks in town. So we finish up at Kona Inn and walk down towards our final destination. With a quick stop at Bubba Gumps to try and get a man to give Keli his underwear. What?! It was on the ‘list’! There was an older gentleman, maybe 70, sitting alone at the bar…
Him: Hey what is this, a birthday party?
Us: It’s a bachelorette party! Arggh! (we were pirates, get it?)
Him: Wow, looks like you girls are having fun! Cheers!
Us: Hey, are you wearing underwear?
Him: Why, yes, I am actually. *blushing* Why do you ask?
Us: Because we need them, Arrgghh! Can we please have your underwear for the bachelorette and then she can have her prize! (of course this is making total sense to us and only us)
Him: Hmm, well, I uh… What the hell, I don’t see why not! (heads to the men’s room)
Us: Yay! Arggh! Woo-hoo!
A few minutes later he comes back with his tighty whities folded discreetly in his hand and gives them to Keli! Who takes a photo holding them. And yes, gives the sweet old man back his bbd’s. And we’re off! We walked down to the next venue to meet up with the guys who were expertly dressed as ridiculously bad tourists.
It was a great night out with all of the guys and girls! Of course, we did sneak home early that night too. 🙂 Kaleo had to surf early in the AM.
(sorry for the blurry shots- Kaleo’s camera was on the wrong setting. It’s artsy…)
While we were in Kona, our friends Mark (the shark) and Rene had their baby! Beautiful little girl, Isley Liberato. Congratulations to the happy couple! We love you guys…
So now it’s time for the wedding. A little background first… Sam and Keli used to date, back in the day. They were made for each other. They parted ways, and dated other people. That ended, and Sam and Keli got back together. Sam proposed, Keli accepted! And the prophecy is fulfilled, as the boys say.
We went out a little early because Kaleo and Bret were in the wedding, along with Muff, B, Ruth, etc. The ceremony was down at waters edge, so close in fact, that the entire wedding party was standing in the ocean! The ceremony was officiated by Mike McMichael, who was ordained for the wedding, just like how we had Remy do ours! There is something so special about having a loved one perform your wedding ceremony.
The ceremony was short and very sweet. Afterwards, everyone walked over to the reception which was directly across the street. It was like another reunion! Picture 300-400 of your friends and family that you haven’t seen in a long time. And the babies! There were so many gorgeous babies! It seems like every time we come home there are more and more of them. My mom and Max were there and I got the ‘look’. You know the one. It was the, ‘uh-huh-everyone-is-doing-it-just-make-us-a-damn-grandchild-already’ look. Haha! Just kidding mom! But I KNOW what you were thinking. 🙂
So we caught up with almost everyone, and watched in awe as Ruthie and Muff sang their little songbird hearts out. We have the most talented friends, it’s crazy. Seriously, what is in the water in Kona, and why did I not drink any of it when I was growing up?!?! The party lasted until… well we don’t know because we did our amazing Wassman disappearing act again! But it was LATE. And of course, the entire party practically moved to the hotel anyway, so we hung out for a while at the pool with all of them.
The next day we met Kainoa and mom, Robin, Lehua, Darius and the Keikis down at Kiholo Bay. It is one of the most amazing places on the BI. Can I really say that? Geez, there are SO many places there that are just magical. We are truly blessed to be from there. But Kiholo really is beautiful. We pulled up to our spot which was way down in the bay, through the gate. We walked right over the reproducing rocks to the clear ocean and jumped in. If you don’t know about the rocks, I don’t think I can tell you. If you know, you know. So we went down the path to the other bay, where the island is and where all of the honus go to sun themselves on the black sand beach. The water is a delicious mixture of salt water and fresh water that comes from underground fresh springs. The water is so clear that it isn’t even blue, it’s just- clear. And the sand at the bottom is so black that it almost shines. As we swam around the smaller island, we would go through warm and cold patches of water that were made from the springs nearby. We swam out to the larger island and beached ourselves in the warm black sand. It felt like we were in some expensive, private island day spa where they exfoliate you with volcanic sand. But way better. Simply beautiful. We laid there for a while talking and laughing with our family, just enjoying the moment and really appreciating where we came from. Sometimes it takes being away for a bit to truly understand what you are missing, and what you are working so hard to come home for.
This was our last day home. We went to my mom’s house and had an incredible dinner that Max cooked, drank the bottle of vinho verde that we brought back from Portugal, and laughed histerically as Lehua, Max, and mom tried the Japanese eyedrops. Another wonderful trip home. When we got back to California, we had to rest for a day or so, then head up to LA for a red carpet party and a festival show. Talk about a culture shock! After being so relaxed and natural on the beach everyday, no makeup… To a red carpet party? Whoa. I mean, I never really feel like I fit in at those things anyway. Like I’m some loosy-goosey hippie chick in a world of… well, LA chicks. But it felt especially foreign after two weeks in Portugal and two weeks in Hawaii. But it was fun to play dress up for the night and pretend that I fit in, effortlessly… haha. 😉
We had such a wonderful trip home. Thanks to all of our family and friends who made it so special. My dad and Renee and the doggies, Uncle Danny and Nancy, and everyone on Oahu, mom and Max, Lehua and Conner, Kai, Robin, TT and my monkey, Kaiola, The Weigangs, and everyone on the Big Island, mahalo nui loa for everything. We are so grateful… but it is never long enough. We miss you all so much!
Mel & Kaleo