I often find myself wondering if I’m too independent. Too opinionated. Too… much. Not enough like everyone else. I think all those things go together. I find myself debating with my own inner dialogue, but sometimes with those I care about as well. When other people weigh in, it usually goes along the lines of them telling me I have stronger opinions on somethings that I probably shouldn’t even really care about, but I should still just go with it. You be you kind of thing. Internally, it depends on the day.

There’s moments I truly think I have split personalities. Not in the legit I have a medical problem, just depending on the day. There’s the ‘I want to be social and go hang out with everyone I know and I can’t sit still and just want to do all the things’ days and then there’s the ‘I don’t want anything to do with people and binge watching Netflix or reading a book in my hammock for 8 hours sounds like the highlight of life and even answering a text seems too social for me’ kind of days. So on my more introverted days, I tend to think maybe I need to conform to what most of society deems “normal.” But on extroverted days… HA! Society can go… well, this is a family friendly blog. So choose your own adventure to fill in that blank.

It’s a conundrum, nevertheless. It’s not easy to be an extrovert AND an introvert. It’s especially difficult when you think you’re feeling extroverted and you meet up with humans and BAM! You really just want to be by yourself. I know I’m not the only one that struggles with this! So do you frantically look for excuses to leave? What if they came to your house?! Now you’re stuck! The horrors. This is a real thing, people. Nightmarish.

Anyway. This timeshare has been calling me for the past 2 weeks and never leaves a message. And it’s not that I don’t want to talk to them – talking usually results in some decent perks – I just am never around my phone when they call. But on the rare occasions I am, I might be in that introverted, dealing with humans is way too overwhelming mode, even via phone calls. In case you were wondering, I finally touched based with them and have a new vacation to plan in the next year or so! Vacation planning is difficult for me, though. My schedule with work is in such a constant flux that it’s difficult to plan more than a few weeks in advance for many things. Which can be great for last minute deals. But flights pretty much never have such discounts and availability can become an issue too. And my people who have more normal scheduled jobs find it difficult to get time off with that short of a notice.

In most instances, that just means I’ll go by myself. Adventuring alone is a pretty sweet gig. I do what I want, only what I want, and don’t have to worry about someone else not getting their way. It sounds pretty selfish and it is. But it’s awesome in it’s own right to have that freedom to literally seize the day I any which way you see fit. Sharing those experiences is great too. You get a different perspective and all that goes along with spending quality time with someone else. And this is where I find myself getting in my own head.

Would I rather go through life having that freedom or those shared moments? Am I too independent to truly share my adventures with someone else all the time? I’m not speaking just to romantically inclined relationships, either. Ski trips with my fencing team from high school or dive trips with my college friends fall into this question too (ok, diving is a bad example since I wouldn’t go diving alone, but it conveys the point that platonic relationships count as well). And I don’t know if I have an answer to that yet. So I go back and forth with the pros and cons of such. And maybe it doesn’t need an answer. Trips I’ve ventured on solo or with people have been epic. Would they have been enhanced if I wasn’t by myself or had I gone on my own? Probably in some aspects. It can be lonely dining alone. But it can also be refreshing. First world problems, I’m telling you. The struggle is real!

At any rate, you gotta do what makes you happy! Hakuna Matata!


You Can Fly, You Can Fly, You Can Fly!

To top off my birthday celebration, I decided to finally start something I’ve wanted to do since I was about 16.  In high school, my AP Chemistry teacher took a more involved approach with the 15 of us in the double period class.  She acted as our mentors and insisted we have plans for our futures.  My plan was to go to space.  It still is.  I’ll get there.  Eventually.  Anyway, when I told her this, she told me I needed a backup plan.  I fought this concept for a while.  I didn’t need a backup.  I’m going to space.  But she fought back too.  So I came up with my backup plan.  I was going to fly helicopters for the Coast Guard.  I remember telling my teacher this and getting a concerned look.  Apparently flying helicopters for the military in general wasn’t a feasible backup plan.  But she went with that.  I’ve wanted to fly helicopters ever since.  And on Saturday, I achieved that goal.  Well.  I started the path to get there.  I FLEW A HELICOPTER!!!
20151024_073359This helicopter, actually!  The Robinson R22 – room enough for two.  And I did it in Hawaii!  While the views were phenomenal and I wold have loved to take some to share, I was a little busy.  FLYING!!!  I’m a little jaded when it comes to flying.  Between my brother having his pilot’s license before his driver’s license and going to a school where half the students can fly,  it’s fun, but it’s not a HUGE deal that people can take aircraft out and give themselves aerial tours.  But flying this bird all on my own today was remarkable.  OK.  Let me be clear.  I was not alone in a helicopter for the 3rd time I’ve ever been in one.  I had an instructor and everything.

When you decide to fly one of these epic creations, you can do a discovery or introductory flight.  Basically, a certified flight instructor gets you into the air and then they hand the controls over to you.  Daniel, my instructor for the morning, was extremely instructional (as you could only hope!!) and made the transition flawlessly.  He even pretended not to be terrified as I dipped the nose a little too far when I first took the cyclic.  I was pretty scared.  Among many other encounters.  Actually there weren’t too many crazy maneuvers happening.  I think I did pretty well.  Daniel kept asking me if I had ever flown before.  Sure, I’ve played around a little in a Cessna and some  simulators, but never anything for a helicopter. So that’s a good thing, right?  I was impressed with my performance.  Granted, I have nothing to compare it to, but I think it went well.

We took off from Honolulu International Airport, and pretty much as soon as we were at 900 ft, Daniel passed the controls over to me.  He did some correcting as we headed west, following the H1, but mostly let me do the flying.  HOW AWESOME!!!  It was weird.  I was so nervous!  But it was amazing and wonderful at the same time.  For nearly a decade I’d wanted to fly one of these things and there I was!  We, well Daniel, “landed” at Kalaeloa Airport and headed out of the way to give it a go at hovering.  Yeah, I was terrible at it.  As Daniel said: “It’s like the Matrix; even the Chosen One doesn’t get it the first time.”  No better truth!  But I did manage to pretty much stay in the same spot for about ten seconds after the first six failed attempts.  Ten seconds isn’t long, but it seemed like it!

We made our way back to HNL and I felt much more comfortable with the controls on the way back.  I did some circles, got excited I could see my apartment, flew over my ship/office (that was super cooled and sparked the conversation of ‘How much trouble would we be in if we landed on her?’), and then landed back where we started.  0.9 hours of flying!!!!  My life is AWESOME!  So now my biggest problem is finding the time to learn everything I possibly can to fly the R22 all on my own.  And some money.  I might have to rob a bank (that’s sarcasm, IRS!!!).  Why are all my hobbies expensive?!  I couldn’t just like/be good at basketball or something?  Oh no.  Skiing, scuba diving, flying.  These are the things I love to do.  Of course.  At any rate, I’m thankful I have these abilities and opportunities.  It doesn’t get much better than this!  Hakuna Matata!