One year ago: The Big Island

Last April, I was drinking Mai Tais on the Big Island of Hawaii. How’s that for bliss?
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Every year, there’s a Bianchi Family Vacation on the books. I’m pretty sure it’s my parents way getting us to spend time all together, now that we’re spread out in a couple of different states (my brother and his wife live near Denver). They bribe us with trips we can’t refuse: the destination has been Hawaii more than once. Smart folks!
Last year’s island of choice was the Big Island. We’d been to Oahu, Maui (my brother and his wife were married there), and Kauai in years past, and each were stunning in unique ways. We always share a condo, basing our daily adventures from there, and enjoy casual breakfasts, pool time, happy hour beverages, and a night or two with the boys manning the BBQ there. We play games and laugh a lot (see ‘happy hour beverages’). My family is fun.
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As it goes with my family, we explored the Big Island mostly by wandering. We hit a local farmer’s market, where we purchased the most delicious pineapple I’d ever tasted. We sampled local beer and toured a coffee plantation. We left our mark on a dollar bill.

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We slurped up snowcones at ‘the best beach in America’ and made friends with sea turtles at another. We peered into a steaming, active volcano, and walked to where the road ends and lava begins.
We soaked in the colors of the Painted Church and the exotic flora everywhere we looked, and caught a couple of remarkable sunsets. We ate a lot, drank a lot, did a lot, laughed a lot.
My parents are preparing to leave on a cruise around the Hawaiian islands to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary. While I’m slightly upset I don’t get to join them, I am so happy they are recognizing such an impressive milestone.
Mai Tais and Hawaiian sunsets-  sound like a pretty good celebration to me.
There are a few options in the works for Bianchi Family Vacation 2012- stay tuned!

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