What is? All this island living, out here, in Hawaii, away from all things cold, dreary, depressing, and consuming. Even taking into account the months I spent on the mainland, I have been residing on these faraway tropical isles now for well over a year and it just seems to be working for me. How do I know? Lots of ways.
Finances have settled down and I am, thanks to years of practicing minimalism, able to live quite comfortably on not a lot of money. Rent is affordable, I want for little in the way of material goods, and I’m even able to put some money aside for the future, something I have not been able to do for way too long. I still have to be careful and mindful of the spending, but thanks to keeping a detailed budget, and just not buying stuff, Hawaii has become quite affordable.
The place I currently rent is no mansion. It’s just an old house and I have to share with two older wimmen folk. We all get along fine even though I know at some point the rent will go up and I will have to move again. But for now, it’s about as nice a place as I have had in a while. Really growing fond of the North Shore area of Maui the longer I stay here. Mild weather, still far enough from the tourist crowds, yet easy access to the rest of the island.
I still qualify for free health insurance which is more than likely to become important later down the road. Hawaii is a very liberal state and it does seem to take care of it’s residents.
From getting my drivers license last year to opening a local bank account to something as simple as a bus pass, I have had little or no issues dealing with government nor corporate entities out here. People are for the most part friendly and helpful, unlike the condescending, rude bastards I am used to back in Florida and, the other place. Everyone is generally just nice and polite out here.
But there is one aspect of island life which is really agreeing with me and I found evidence of said agreeing this week.
When I came back out here in September I was physically in bad shape. Grossly overweight thanks to a summer of over eating, depression, and no exercise. My weight before then was hovering between 225 and 235. If I had to hazard a guess I would say I was way over 240 when I waddled off the plane back onto the island. I felt and looked like shit.
Once I got settled in and could think clearly again, I made changes to my diet and began walking a bit more than before. I had to go slow lest I wipe myself out with heart attack or something. I discovered Mana Foods and out of necessity and finances, began to eat more better. I cut out dairy and bread, mostly due to the high cost out here, and started eating more organics, non GMO, and local fare. Overall I was eating way more less, but way more better.
There were more fruits and vegetables, smaller dishes for dinner, and essentially one main meal a day as opposed to three back on the mainland. I still have a sweet tooth, nothing will ever stop there, and some cheap pizza at Costco happens almost every week but yet, I have been eating more better than before, and it’s starting to show.
I began to notice around the end of this past year my clothes seemed to sag on me a bit. I had to go up a shirt size last summer and now said shirts were just too baggy on me. My shorts also, needing as much tightening of the swashbuckles as possible. It seems I have been losing weight with this lifestyle and yesterday bore this fact out.
I stopped by a local emporium which sells bathroom scales and tried one out for size. I stepped in said scale, fulling expecting it to scream in agony or have one of the sales weasels come over and tell me, “one at a time please.”, but to my astonishment, the little dial spun around and settled on…207lbs. I couldn’t believe it. 207lbs. It’s been years since I weighed so little. I can’t remember the last time I was under 200lbs but it’s been awhile.
But I have to factor in a few things. Being a store demo scale it’s probably not the most accurate in the world, plus I was wearing clothes, shoes, and my bag with me. So, subtract 25 lbs. for clothes, (standard for most people?), subtract a few pounds for being at sea level as being closer to the center of the earth, gravity is greater. A few more pounds because I am south of the Tropic of Cancer, hence closer to the Equator, hence near where gravity is more, so factoring all this in…let’s see…um carry the 2, it looks like I am positively almost svelte. Well, not fat as I was before, but a helluva lot better also.
Realistically, if said scales are remotely correct, it means I’ve shed somewhere between 25 and 30 pounds since moving out here. Not too shabby considering how poor of shape I was in beforehand. The bottom line is this: Whatever I am doing out here in the middle of the Pacific, it’s working. I’m losing weight, saving some money, and feeling a whole lot more better than before.
If there be a downside to all this weight losing it’s now I have to replace clothing which no longer fits. I did manage to save a few shirts of a lesser size back on the mainland and had them sent here so it saves some money for now. But eventually, if I continue to shed weight, a new wardrobe will be necessary. A worthwhile trade off if I can get below 200 lbs and stay there.
I am still the same basic height I was coming out of school, about 5’11 or 6′. Back then I weighed a total of 125 pounds. When I moved away and worked construction by day, and played volleyball by night, I bulked up to 175, which would be a very nice comfy weight to be again, but it may not be within reach. Anything under 200 will be fine by me.
I still need to get out and exercise more. More walking, maybe trying some of the hiking trails, and with all the water around here, a little paddle boarding would be kinda, sorta nice. Something other than me lying around working on the computer all day. I just need to get out and do it. But for the moment life out here on the islands…
It seems to be working.