Every time I open my eyes I can see sunshine come through my window. Every morning is just as beautiful as the one before it. It is like waking up in heaven, and the island of Maui is just that; a heaven on earth.
Though the island is like heaven the journey to it, however, is quite the opposite. Especially when surrounded by a loud family, and when I say “family”, I mean a family. This is not just Mom, Dad and my sister Katie; no, this is about twenty family members who include my Grandma and Grandpa, Uncles and Aunts and the always obnoxious cousins. The journey to the airport alone was a journey within itself and once my family got inside the airport is was like a verbal World War Two. Not in the sense of profanities but in the sense that they were constantly bickering. It seemed never-ending as I waited in lines in the airport, even with headphones on I could hear their nonsensical prattle. Though the topic of most of the discussion was about my aunts wedding which was the main reason we where trekking to Hawaii after all.
I felt like I was in a herd of cattle as we moved through the bustling airport to find our terminal. Once we all arrived we did a head count and made sure we did not lose anyone through all the craziness. Luckily, we were all there so we found some seats and waited for our plane to start boarding. I could not help but ponder about what Hawaii would be like. I had gone before but I was young and barely remember anything at all. As I sat there daydreaming I was snapped back to reality when my Mom was dragging me to the plane which was now boarding. Once I passed the threshold to the plane I knew that my adventure was now going to begin.
The plane ride was dull and I dreamed most the way whether daydreaming or in my sleep. We arrived after three hours in a plane and once we got out we were greeted by women in traditional Hawaiian apparel, which included the grass skirt, bikini top and lots of flowers. Each of us was given a lei, they were beautiful each had a different kind of flower. Mine had purple flowers and I wore it faithfully until we reached the condo complex. The condo my family got was to be shared by everyone. It was quite large but not big enough for everyone to get their own room. I ended up sharing a room with my Aunt Gail, the room was on the small side compared to the other rooms but it was suitable for all my purposes. Though on the first night I found out that the bed was missing a leg, I did a MacGyver and made one of my shoes into the bed leg, which I used for the entirety of the trip. I am quite fond of that room for there was a small window just above my head and every time I would wake up I would see sun shining through it. It always brought a smile onto my face, because I believe that sunshine is an omen of happiness.
The sunshine was a true omen because I never had a day where I did not wear a smile. Our days were filled with mini-adventures to sugar cane plantations, shopping and to popular beaches. My favorite trek was on a crab infested beach. I would chase the crabs as if they were sea gulls, though I never got too close out of fear they might hurt me. As I was chasing crabs on the beach I stumbled across a path that lead to a small stone bridge under a large tree. The bridge was not far so I ran up the path and stood on the bridge which was over a small river of sea water. I looked down and was immediately thrown into a state of awe. For what I saw was dozens of brightly colored fish swimming about in groups. The light would come through the leaves of the tree and would make the fish glimmer as if they were gems. I do not remember how long I stood on that bridge but I was dragged away at some point, but the vivid colored fish stayed in my mind, and still do.
After five days in Maui it was finally the time for my Aunt Dede to get married. The day of the wedding was hectic everyone got into their dressy wardrobes and then traveled to a big hotel where everybody was hustling and bustling around trying to get ready. Since I was on the younger side I did not have to do anything besides look pretty and enjoy the ceremony. The wedding was being held outside in a grassy area surrounded by trees and vivid green vegetation. At about noon the wedding officially began, the music started and everyone in a white chair stood up and turned their heads in unison to look behind them to see my aunt in a beautiful strapless white gown as she walked down the grassy isle. Once the pastor started talking I mentally prepared myself to endure an hour of talking. Though to my utter amazement the ceremony was extremely short, it was almost as if it was the bare essentials. It made the wedding so much more enjoyable to me. Everyone took pictures afterwards and stood around congratulating my Aunt Dede and my new Uncle Ed. After all the complements and congratulating were done and over with everyone went to a restaurant where my aunt and uncle had their post-wedding games like throwing the guarder and such. At the time I did not understand the games or even why they did them so I went with my younger cousin Emily and we played on the beach.
The next day after the wedding my family stayed at the condo, I went and swam in the pool that was surrounded by red hibiscus flowers. Everyone just sat around all day and was either sleeping, sun bathing or swimming. My cousin Emily and I swam in the pool most the day because we had our fill of the ocean water for the past week. Plus, the pool was especially pretty; bright red hibiscus flowers lined along the black steel fence that enclosed the pool area. From time to time I would get out of the pool and would sun bathe on a pool chair. Though, I spent most my time in that pool area while we were at the condo and even on occasion I would be allowed to swim in it at night. I went to the beach that was at our door step a lot but not to swim, I would collect shells and rocks most the time. That place was like some thing out of a dream; but like all good dreams it came to an end.
It was quiet in the morning as we all packed our stuff. I was truly sad that we had to leave, though it was a week it felt like the blink of an eye. I knew, however, that I was not the only one who was depressed that we had to leave for everybody seemed to have a sad aura. As we all got ready to leave I decided I would go outside for awhile; almost as if I was saying goodbye. I was not allowed to stand there long; we had to leave, it was unavoidable but I got dragged to the car and was driven to the airport. I watched the condo for as long as I could before it disappeared from my view. Maui had felt like my home away from home and I was sad to leave it. As I sat in the car watching buildings blur by my I thought about my trip. I thought about all the smiling faces I saw everyday, all the adventures I had, all the sights I saw and all the happiness that my trip held. My trip to Maui was the happiest time in my life, not one frown made its way upon my face. It was there that I experienced true happiness.
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