You either love Hawai’i or you don’t love Hawai’i.
I knew people who resented not having cooler weather or who didn’t like sand or beaches. What?!
We were surprised to get stationed there for three years.
Living in Hawai’i isn’t the same as a vacation there. But every single day, there’s a rainbow!
We lived on base. My son was born in Hawaii. We loved it and the kids still call it home. We long to go back!
I couldn’t limit my list to just 10 items!
Best of Hickam AFB
So many fun festivals, like the Merrie Monarch, SPAM, Makahiki, and The Lantern Festival. Hawaiians love to party!
It’s almost always gorgeous. Never cold and mostly sunny. Except December is a rainy month.
If you love food, there is a plethora of it! It’s so, so good!
Some of our favorites:
Wailana Cafe for Macadamia Pancakes and the best coffee!
Hale Koa Bar for the best mai tai!
Nico’s Pier 38
Teddy’s Bigger Burgers
Nam Fong for the best Peking Duck!
Aloha culture is welcoming and joyous. We never felt discrimination for being white or haole. Aloha Fridays were the best – leave work early to get a start on the weekend!
Lots of fun, outdoorsy things to do: hiking, wildlife exploring, camping, beach activities, history, and culture.
Worst of Hickam AFB
There are only 3 major highways on O’ahu. Traffic can be rough during rush hour times. We had to always plan accordingly or just suck it up.
These not so little critters get into everything. I once threw out a hamper when one crawled inside. I didn’t even play. They sting quite badly. Also, mosquitoes and other bugs are a nuisance since it’s always warm.
People get island fever. The mainland is about 8 hours away by plane.
No Autumn or Winter
We didn’t mind this at all, but we knew some people who missed cooler weather. They complained that Christmas didn’t feel like Christmas. We made the most of it and had lots of fun with tacky decorations. December is the rainy season and our lanai turned green!
We always had the sniffles and were prone to respiratory infections due to the Vog. It’s the volcano fog floating over all the islands from The Big Island smoldering volcanoes. It was sometimes very hard to breathe and alerts would issued to stay indoors.
There was no possibility of our living off-base. Housing is super expensive. Food in local grocery stores is super expensive. The commissary sometimes ran out of sugar and other staples during peak times, so we learned to stock up before the holidays instead of running out to a local store.