Lessons from Paradise: Maui, Hawaii
Dave Childs and Alice Zhou, second day in Maui on Big Beach with the Hostel Tour
My fiancé Dave and I took a week off for a well deserved vacation to the sandy beaches of Maui Hawaii, and came back with ideas, inspiration and renewed energy to chase after our dreams. I had visited Puket in Thailand years before, after seeing the movie trailer for “The Beach”, but was disappointed at the actual resort, as it was missing palm trees and every water sport cost money. This was not the case with Maui. We researched and found the cheapest hotel stay was $277 US per night, so we decided to spend $65 a night for a private room in the Banana Bungalow Hostel, one of the wisest decisions we made. It allowed us to see how the locals live, shop, eat and play. It also gave us the freedom to spend our money on our adventures.
We danced to the drum circle at the ‘clothing optional’ little beach in Wilea, saw the sun rise at 4am on the top of Haleakala Mountain, then biked 35 miles down the volcano, snorkelled and tried boogie boarding, swam with the tropical fishes and giant sea turtles, drove through rainforest and bamboo forest and enjoyed the star studded night sky and the fire dancers of the Luau.
The best thing that happened on our trip was the wonderful people we met from all over the world. At the hostel, we met John, the hippy artist from Iowa who had amazing travel and life stories, David from Alaska who enlightened me on the fraudulent citizenship system of the United States. We also met 2 Irish fellows who saved up $40,000 pounds and are on a 6 month journey around the world with Africa and Mount Everest as their next destinations, and Gronolla, a Swedish lady who came to Maui for the sheer beauty of the dolphins and whales.
We were wrapped in the kind generosity of the Hawaiian culture by Kent Apo, and his two friends in Paia. Kent’s store was like a little museum of Hawaiian culture, from his surfing trophies, to traditional weapons, pictures of the war thousands of years ago, to traditional luau equipment and gifts. He and his two friends told us about the difficulty of maintaining their culture with big business owning all the land, and dramatic increases in real estate prices driving the young people to the US mainland for jobs, and the locals term of distaste for foreigners - “Holie” pronounced ‘howly’- which means people without breath (when Captain Cook landed, he extended his hand for a handshake, while Hawaiians greet each other by breathing each other’s breath).
What we brought back with us was a great tan, 350 pictures, a Hawaiian warrior head Kent made from a squash!, a Tiki statue from the God of Tourism made in Indonesia, and a hunger for more travel. It made me realize how Vancouver has very little to no reputation on the world stage, and how wonderful that multiculturalism is cherished and really lived in our everyday lives here. That word does not exist on Maui, as I saw a lot of segregation. It saddens me to think that real Hawaiian culture will be no more than rehearsed Luaus for the tourists in 50 years time, and Maui will be know just for its white sandy beaches instead of as the warm and colorful Polynesian cultural capital.
To see all the fantastic pictures, visit my blog at http://gracioushost.blogspot.com
The Coles Notes to The Secret
I just watched The Secret DVD last Sunday, and it reminded me again how powerful yet simple the universe is and how we can benefit if we work with the law of attraction.
1) Do this daily: THINK, ASK, FEEL GOOD, VISUALIZE, LET THE UNIVERSE ANSWER and RECEIVE.
2) Your mission in life is to experience joy in life, follow your bliss.
3) Feel exhilarated everyday
4) Order what you want from the universe, don’t think about how it will come, and don’t doubt the universe.
5) Believe that money will come easily and quickly
6) Inner Joy, Inner Peace, Inner Vision is what you should strive for, give to yourself, love yourself.
7) We are unlimited beings. The purpose of your life is whatever mission you give yourself.
8) The Universe is abundant
9) Live in Harmony and Love!
What I got from the movie and reading the Laws of Attraction was that every one of us has an emotional compass, our feelings are our guidance system connecting us to the much older and wiser inner self. I felt as if a huge rock was lifted from my shoulders, as I have been to seminar after seminar searching for my purpose and the enlightened way of being and living. Every time I heard something that appealed to me, I would change my belief system and follow the “Guru” system to success. This pattern has been really disempowering because I’m always in a phase of doubt, and always questioning my own intuition and feelings. Now, I just follow what feels good to me and things are coming to me miraculously without effort. It’s such a better way to live when you honor and love yourself, instead of trying to please others and conform to their wishes.
And the winner is…….Gracious Host Events!!!!!!!!!!!!!
On March 29th, at the 12th Annual Cultural ‘Divercity’ Awards for Business, Gracious Host Events was the winner for the Youth Enterpreneur Diversecity Business Award! I mustered all my courage to deliver an one minute speech (thank God for Toastmasters training!) to a group of 350 honored guests and dignitaries.
This is what I said:
“When we first meet someone, we mentally put each other into categories according to ethnicity, age, sex, etc. But underneath all these categories, we’re all human. We have more in common than our differences. I’m very proud that my job allows me to create connections between people, and to create a cultural bridge between the East and West through events and public relations. I’d like to dedicate this award to my mother, who has been a constant inspiration, who taught me to help others, and always keep an open mind. So Merci Beaucoup, Glacias, Mahalo, 本当にありがとう, 谢谢, Thank you for this wonderful award!”
The gala was truly elegant and thought provoking. We heard a really insightful keynote speech from Bing Thom of Bing Thom Architects urging Vancouverites to change our city from a resort that’s a city, to a city that is a resort, and also with a call for innovative action to avoid the depletion of the world’s resources to feed our modern lifestyle by looking into sustainability, new technology advancements, urban planning, etc. I’m truly honored to be a recipient of the award and very grateful for the recognition. Also thrilled to experience the awesome interactive drum café’s African drumming party!! See pictures and video of the award acceptance at http://gracioushost.blogspot.com
Quote of the Month:
"All humans have moments of inspiration when we perceive truth. These moments usually occure when the mind is quite -- when we perceive the force of life through our feelings. Of course, the voices inside our head that we call thinking will invalide our experiece almost right away. These voices will try to justify and deny what we feel. Why? Because when we witness the truth, all of the lies we believe cannot survive."
~ Don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Voices of Knowledge