There is a wonderful, horrible moment before any big event when all the preparations have been made, every bag has been packed, and there’s not much to do besides hurry up and wait. I vividly remember nights before Ironman races of years past that were filled wish such apprehension, dread, and downright nausea that I couldn’t understand why I ever thought signing up for the race was a good idea to begin with.
All that to say, it’s 4 in the morning here in Kauai. And I can’t sleep.
In fairness, I’m still living partially on Colorado time. Back home it is 8 a.m. and my son, who is having the time of his life with his grandparents, is probably eating yogurt, begging for juice, and getting ready to go play in the snow. Meanwhile, I am sitting on our balcony listening to the wind howl, wondering if the weather is going to cooperate, and hoping that I didn’t forget anything truly vital.
We spent yesterday relaxing. We got up at 4:30 and headed to Hanalei to watch the sun rise over the bay. We went snorkeling at Tunnels Beach and basked in the sunshine of a perfect Hawaiian day. We gorged on fresh papaya from a fruit stand and coffee and crepes from one of my favorite little cafes on the planet. And then we packed. Dear god, did we pack!
In an hour the alarm will go off and we’ll stow our luggage with the hotel, grab a quick coffee, and drive up to Ke’e Beach to hit the trail. I know from years of sleepless nights before big adventures that the nerves tend to end right alongside the anticipation. Soon I won’t be worrying about what I’m forgetting or how the trip will go because I will be living it, not thinking about it. Doing and moving is always so much better than sitting and waiting.
I know this feeling goes away. I also know that most of the best days of my life have begun with butterflies just like these. It’s going to be a good week, you guys. I can feel it.
We’ll be back in civilization on Thursday (god willing and the creek don’t rise …). See you then, internets!
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