With Dawn by your side, a sailboat carries you swiftly through wind and wave. It is exhilarating to ride the ocean with such purpose. Something is building within your chest: You are being called by spirit of Aloha.
The thought of island life eases your shoulders down, flinging the invisible weights they were carrying into the ocean's depths. You can feel your body and soul being quenched by salt air and shimmering sun.
The next morning, you finally make it to land and touch down on a wild, unpopulated beach. Although landbound, your eyes are still drawn to the waves. There is something mesmerizing and peaceful about their movement, like some eternal and playful dance. You shake off the thought and begin your exploration of Maui.
After a few moments walking through thick vegetation, a glance over your shoulder makes you realize the ocean is no longer within view. You are lost. A thrill of panic rises from your gut and tightens, ball-like, in your throat. You stop to close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Eventually, you become calm again and your throat begins to relax. You notice a sound: water! You find a stream nearby and as you begin to follow it back to the path, this little mishap makes you wonder: are you a glass half-full or half-empty type of person?
The path you eventually find leads you up Haleakala volcano. Reaching its peak, you take in the moon-shaped crater and notice that it combines life's four elements: water, earth, fire, and air. Which element are you?
Back on the sailboat, a mix of hard work, nautical luck, and stubbornness allow you to eventually find yourself downwind. After some time sailing, you make it to the Coast of Lanai Island where you anchor the ship in a small creek for some rest.
Watching the whales from afar with Dawn, your eyes come alive with the realization that all things, all phenomenon, share a common foundation: they appear, exist for a time, and disappear. It's an interesting thought and a little unsettling, how does this apply to your own life?
You find some comfort in Moloka'i tropical rainforest. Its diverse ecology help ground you into nature's steady rhythm. It feels as though the plants, trees, insects, and birds are contributing notes to a song that beats with your heart. You commune so deeply with this setting that, when you open your eyes following meditation, you are surprised to find your clothes are wet from a passing rain.
Feeling quenched, you raise the sails to begin your eastward journey across the ocean. Dawn gives you the helm and, as you contemplate the expanse of water before you, the words of Baudelaire rise up from some inner fountain of memory: « Always, unfettered being, you will cherish the Sea! »