Kauai is Old. Old and Moody.

Written By: Charles - Feb• 29•08

8:53PM 73.  Night.  Clouds.  Surf back.  Strong, cool breeze off ocean.  Humid.

Kauai is old.  Old and moody.  It goes from sunshine to dark clouds in a moment, from dry to cloudburst.  It’s peaks sharp and jagged, there are notches between mountains.  Valleys run away from the ocean in deep v’s ending in waterfalls. 

A quarter of the island has no roads and no human habitation.  Only 58,000 people live on Kauai as residents, though many others come through from a few days to a few months.  Like me.

High up on Mount Wai’aleale hundreds of inches rain fall each year.  The Polihale Beach and the area around it on the south west is arid, practically desert.  Great sea slides lie in the Pacific around Kauai, evidence of land that used to be above sea level.

The longer I’m here, the more the land and the ocean speak.  The bays, the beaches, small lakes of freshwater.  The debris thrown up on the beach speaking of  what lies beneath the water.  The way vegetation and temperature change as elevation changes.  The breezes.  The fresh catch in the restaurants:  opah, ahi, marlin, ono.

Somewhere under all this is a process so old, so mysterious that it leaves no trace, yet nothing here happened without it.  Or happens.  Maybe it’s not under, perhaps within or around and within is better. 

Here’s the twist for me.  The more Kauai draws me in and makes me love her, the more I want to return to Minnesota, to our lakes, our rivers and streams.  The trees and shrubs and flowers on the land we care for in Andover.  I want to make another circle tour of Lake Superior, a slow one with time to listen to the lake.   Minnesota is old, too, and the process works there, too.  The same process.

As Lao-Tze said, “Whenever I sit in a room, the universe is there.”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.