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Tara Riceberg - 26 / Apr / 2020

Waiting for the sunrise

Waiting for the sunrise

As the sun kissed the Pacific goodnight at Kaimana Beach, I was told that the key to living into your 90s was lots of good sex. Oh, and being social too.

This was just one of the many lessons I learned over the last few days on Oahu.

Through a part in the curtains, I spied a cattle egret hanging out on the rail of my bedroom balcony. I stood quietly making eye contact with this cosmopolitan heron. I was very confused by its visit as this species is known for hanging out in fields to look for insects. I suspected it might have a message for me. Being white, it could be associated with angels and the afterlife. It could also mean that life is filled with miracles and joy. You only need to know the direction in which to look.

I experienced a miracle the next day. I awoke before the sun and headed out to Lanikai beach to greet it. I walked along the white powder beach until I found an unobstructed view of the twin islets, Na Mokulua, aka The Mokes.  I sat down under the gray sky and waited.  A fisherman waded over my way and interfered with my peaceful view as he cast his line. I collected my towel and continued south towards the beached outriggers. I settled in on a spot dotted with Ghost crab holes and spied some popping in and out while I waited for pukana la (sunrise in Hawaiian.)

Soon, the sun rose behind the clouds. As it climbed, its sunbeam illuminated the water and extended out towards the shore. The light reached me and I could feel it on my knees. I knew in that moment that the universe had my back. It had moved me from where I was earlier to where I needed to be to receive the light. I suppose this secretly happens all the time. We just don’t see it. Funny how those sneaky miracles operate. You don’t need to see them. You just have to trust that they happen all the time.

For example, the next day I went to Whole Foods in the early morning before the neighborhood cafes had opened. I sat in the parked car finishing a phone call with the east coast. I was sharing my thoughts on this visit to see our friend who is battling brain cancer. She’s staying at her mom’s house in this quiet side of the island. There are no hotels here and only long-term house rentals so there are almost no tourists. When I hung up, I walked to the market entrance. “Trevor? Trevor!” I couldn’t believe it. I bumped into a Tweak customer. The perfect combination of timing and awareness. I phoned the shop to share my news. No one was surprised. “Of course, you bumped into someone you know. You know so many people.”

That is my number one blessing in having a retail shop. I get to connect with lots of people every day. Perhaps this means I’ll have a long life too?

With coffee in hand, I went for my final visit to my sick friend. She wasn’t well enough to sit up when I arrived. I told her my funny story knowing she would probably recognize this customer from the times she helped me in the shop. She laughed. She spoke about how our energy is always here even if our bodies aren’t. When I told her that it was time for me to go to the airport she suddenly sat up and asked for a hug. I held on. I gave her a normal “so long, back to LA” goodbye. But I realized on this day, the day of my late mother’s birthday, that it probably was more than that. My tears flowed.

I headed out for my flight with my life lessons from the trip. Love and friendship are the best medicine. Trust in miracles. It’s never goodbye. Just because the sun sets and is no longer in our sights, doesn’t mean it’s gone. It’s simply shining its bright light elsewhere.

Aloha.