I’ve been on tons of hikes in my 25 years of living but I’ve never actually been on a summit. When I heard about Mauna Kea being the tallest mountain in the world, I had to somehow hike it. Fast forward 3 months later and you don’t have to hike it at all. I was kind of disappointed I didn’t but I was with a friend and driving was much easier for them. You will need a 4 wheel drive if you plan on going to the top. The roads are so narrow and curvy, it could be very easy to have an accident if not in the proper car. You want to first stop at the visitor center about 9000 ft up just so you can get adjusted to the elevation and they are also super helpful. They let you know about every trail and the proper times to leave the top and come back to the visitor center and get a star-gazing tour.
We started driving up the summit around 115! When I told my friends what I was doing that weekend, they all said to leave later and I was thinking how crazy they are for thinking that. You don’t want to miss the sunset! We finally trekked up to the top of Mauna Kea and I was surprised how many roads there were up there. I mean I feel like they always say to take care of the land but if you really think about it, making so many roads is actually hurting the land that was there before. We didn’t get a chance to look inside the telescopes but from the outside, they looked like it was some 2020 life. I honestly thought I was on Mars. So when we finally did reach the top it was around 3 pm so what else were se supposed to after gawking at all the views? DRINK. We brought beer and wine. Let me tell you, beer + wine + negative oxygen = quick drunk.
We finally got to Lake Waiau and it is honestly the most sacred peaceful place you will ever go. I felt such a calming energy when I was up there. it’s a whole different experience. The tale comes that true Hawaiian chiefs would take the cord from their newborn son and hike Mauna Kea barefoot to drop the cord in the ocean to give good luck to the son and his future family. I don’t know if its true or not but we definitely didn’t touch any of the water or step in it because that would’ve been so disrespectful. It will probably be one of my favorite views for a long time.
Arkansas has no ocean. I would go to the beach in Florida for about a week or two once a year. Now that I live ON AN ISLAND, I am going to pretty much live in the water. I’m pretty sure I might have skin cancer already with being on the beach so much. Being on the beach is honestly the best therapy. You really cant beat listening to music, reading a book, and drinking a cold beer.
Being around the ocean 24/7 is amazing for your body because do you know much calories you spend if you swim, snorkel, paddle board or surf. I am currently obsessed with my new gadget the GoPro Hero 5 session so I’ve been going snorkeling constantly. The first day I got my GoPro selfie stick, I didn’t tighten it up enough and of course I swam with 4 turtles that day. Yeah it sucked I didn’t get a cool photo but the experience was amazing. I will never forget it. They are so graceful but silly at the same time. I was scared I was going to accidently hurt them because of the waves so I didn’t want to get too close to them. My favorite snorkeling spots so far has to be Kua Bay and Captain Cook. I think honestly, anywhere you go on the big island is going to be a great snorkeling experience. I would recommend getting tracking shoes since the big island beaches are a little more rocky. It’ll save you from getting so many cuts on your feet. Also invest in a good snorkel and mask to make sure you are actually enjoying the beautiful fish deep down in the ocean 🙂
I CANT BELIEVE I GET TO LIVE IN HAWAII FOR 3 MONTHS. Like I can’t believe I get to say that. I never would’ve imagined a year ago, that I would be living on the beautiful islands of Hawaii. I will be spending 3 months on the big island! That’s the beauty of travel nursing, the places you get to go are random and they can be so beautiful. Honestly, I had no idea how many islands make up Hawaii. I always just figured Honolulu which I’m sure a lot of people do.
The license: The biggest pain with nursing I feel like is having to get so many different license for a state. Thankfully since I started in Arkansas, most licenses are compact but Hawaii is not one of them. The good thing about Hawaii is that its a walk through state. I had to get fingerprinted, nursys information sent over by my recruiter, and fill out like 4 pages of paperwork but other than that, I just paid them $300 or something dollars and I got my temp license there and then. The only place you can get your Hawaii license is in Honolulu so if you work on a different island, you’ll have to make two flights.
Big Island: one thing that I’ve learned about some hospitals is that they have cottages that they rent out and the hospital that I’m working at happens to be one of those hospitals. $250 a month in Hawaii is basically like striking gold. Keep in mind that is a private room and shared living space and not in the best location by the beach but I’m the kind of person that doesn’t really stay at home either. My mindset is imagine all the activities I can do with all the extra money! I recently got a gopro Hero 5 session so i’m so pumped about all the pictures I’m going to get underwater and adventuring!