When you go to Hawaii you hear the phrase, “Live aloha!” quite a bit. You not only hear about it but you experience it as well, in the driving courtesy, friendly smiles and laid-back spirit. In a recent Sunset Magazine article, Kaui Hart Hemmings writes,
“We are known for slack-key guitar, which is appropriate. It means to loosen the key, and that’s what we are able to do while maintaining busy, productive lives. This isn’t to be confused with dolce far niente: the Italian sensibility of pleasant idleness. It’s quite the opposite. We don’t lounge in the beauty—it beckons us to hike it, paddle it, surf its swells, snorkel its reefs. And it’s part of our jobs in some way, a responsibility to ourselves and our children to teach these lessons in free fun, in working with what we have, which becomes a true and endless appreciation.”
Kaui Hemmings’ description of the aloha spirit speaks to me because it’s this way of living that moves my soul. It makes me feel whole…to experience nature in its rawest form, to love your neighbor in a tangible way, to live simply and joyfully, with the ocean as your backdrop. My family and I will be returning to Maui, Hawaii, very soon, and I am grateful to have the opportunity to share in the aloha spirit once more with those who have a rich history of living it out, day by day.
For those not able to make the island their home, to “Live aloha!” is still something to grasp. It may take an extra effort with the crazy driving, gloomy skies or lackluster surroundings, but it’s still attainable. The reason it’s still attainable? Well, it’s because it comes from within, from your very soul, your truest self.
I hope that whatever you may face today that the “aloha spirit” reaches you and draws a smile from your heart to a beam on your face.