Preparing for Hawaii

(Go ahead and get in the mood: Hawaiian Radio on Pandora)

In January I’m taking a trip to Hawaii with Chen and her parents. We’ll only be there for eight days, and we’ll spend most of our time on Maui and Hawaii. I’ve never been there, never paid much attention to it.

So: I’m learning about Hawaii.

Eight days isn’t long enough to understand anything about a place, sure. My challenge is to spend the next two months learning about Hawaii—Hawaii Hawaii—so that I’m prepared when I get there to see and taste and hear things that I might have missed otherwise. Food, music, books, sights. My ideal of how to take a trip is super pretentious—so what? I’ll go to the sites that everyone goes to—those are also fun. But I really enjoy the kind of preparation of getting to know about a place. It’s like preparing for an athletic event. The payoff is both in the work and in the performance. I think there’s something wrong with me.

There are a few angles I’m taking on this. One is the Hawaiian language. Another is studying maps. And finding books. And music. And small companies that only exist in Hawaii that I’ll never see again after I leave.

I’m taking notes: /travel/hawaii. If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment or send me an email.

Here are some ideas I’ve collected so far:

Books

I’m biased towards: books I can get from the library; out-of-copyright books I can get via Google Books; used books I can get for less than $1 on Amazon.

I’ve already picked up the ones below. I’ll make notes about others on /travel/hawaii#books

Language

/language/hawaiian

Aloha. Mahalo. That’s all I’ve got so far.

Hawaiian Public Radio (@wearehpr) posts a Hawaiian word of the day on Twitter (#HWOTD).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *