In terms of what makes me really happy, my favorite things in life are being outside, being somewhere beautiful, doing activities, and getting physical exercise – so it should not be a surprise that I am obsessed with hiking. My dad was a huge hiker and insane backpacker when I was a kid – I remember him going off on trips for 10 days covering a hundred miles, and coming back with no toenails. Every summer we would go camping in upstate California or the Sequoia Forest – and as a kid I hated hikes. I didn’t play sports (exact words from baby Amy “sports are stupid!” ((Not much has changed))) so keeping up was always a struggle. My dad’s trick was to pack gummy bears, and bribe me with them every few minutes. As I grew up, I discovered the satisfaction in hiking – and after so many years of living in the city, I craved it. When I would go home to California, going up a hike was always one of the first things I would do. Now in our travels, I’m always looking for mountains to climb, waterfalls to find, crests to tip-toe towards, sometimes on my hands and knees because I am far from fearless. Oahu is just made for this – the mountains, the views, the lava rock that is perfect for gripping, I don’t think I have ever been anywhere better.
We were on our way out to Kaena Point for a day of off-roading, monk seal watching and aerial filming when we passed an airfield that brought back so many childhood memories.
I’ve wanted to fly for as long as I can remember. Soar the world to exotic places, meet new people and humbly welcome myself to these faraway strange worlds. I used to sit at home and build airplanes and airports out of Legos and fly my creations around the house. When I was 8, I discovered Fight Simulator and cruised the world from my computer. Back then, flying and adventure was just a part of my imagination, but I knew I had to make it a reality someday.
I love Hawaii. I really just love Hawaii. Being from California, it was never super exotic, as it’s pretty much the easiest flight you can get to somewhere tropical – but the more of the world I see, the more I appreciate that it is really just a wonderful, beautiful, lush place, even if it is technically still a part of the US. Honolulu has always felt much too similar to Los Angeles to me but for Oahu, the neighborhood of Kailua, encircling Lanikai Beach feels like home. The day we moved out of New York, Brandon and I hopped on a 6:00AM flight straight to Hawaii, ready to jump in the ocean, hike the mountains, and cleanse ourselves of the chaotic, hellish process that is Leaving New York City. Arriving felt like breathing fresh air for the first time. We had the chance to stay in a perfect little beach bungalow, with stairs from the yard right into the some of the most amazing water. A week living here was just a dream.
Stepping off a plane in Honolulu after getting on in NYC is like being able to breathe for the first time. The whole airport smells like flowers from the sea of leis and the sticky air is palpable. Leaving New York was non-stop chaos – from packing up to shipping to moving and cleaning, it was a race to the finish. We keep coming back to Hawaii over and over again because it feels like home. It feels like freedom. It feels like a dream.