As of May 24th my family and I are moving back to the mainland. I got a new job and a new adventure awaiting me in Twin Falls, Idaho.
I've learned so many things while living here it doesn't seem real that it is all coming to an end. My greatest fear is that I will become that couch potato I once was. Hawaii is so much a part of who I am now that I can't imagine myself anywhere else. I have met so many wonderful people here. Made so many great friends. But it's time to move on. Since three of our kids and two grandkids live on the mainland, it's for the best. We'll be able to see them more often.
I can honestly say I am a different person now than when I arrived in the Aloha state 7 years ago. I guess the true test of character comes from challenges, and moving to a completely different climate, culture and economy will certainly be challenging for me.
I have always felt that Kona made me special, at least, made me feel special. It taught me how to swim, how to bike and how to run. It taught me how to be strong, how to be encouraged by encouraging others. To be inspired by inspiring others. Without it, without being here, seems like I just might be leaving my identity behind. The person I have learned to become.
I've never swum anywhere but here - the ocean and the Kona pool. I've never done a triathlon anywhere but here. I've trained with some of the best athletes in the world here (I wonder how often Lance makes it to Idaho?). I've trained with some of the best people in the world here - Kona People.
But, just like moving here was scary and exciting and a giant mystery of what to expect, moving to a place I've never been is just another step on this adventure I'm on.
I don't know much about Twin Falls other than that it's on the Snake River Canyon. The pictures look pretty. There is no Masters swimming there, which is very disappointing to me. Hopefully there will be lots of good running trails and biking routes. Whatever the negatives are, the positives will outweigh them. Our son, Jon, lives in Portland (about 9 hours away) so we will be able to see him a lot. Rachael is in Georgia and Daniel is in North Carolina so it won't cost nearly as much to see them as it does now.
So, here's to a new adventure. Scary, exciting, mysterious! Just like doing my first Ironman.
I'd like to leave you with this song by Loudon Wainwright. It characterizes my 7-year summer more than anything I could ever say.
Oh no, I just realized I'll have to change the name of this blog next month. Maybe I can call it "The Spud Life," or "Beets Me." (They grow sugarbeets there).
Thanks so much for following "The Kona Life" all these years. I'll start posting my new adventure once I get settled and come up with a new blog name. Take care my friends, Randy