Yep, we went to Hawaii. All.out. Our philosophy was, we're only gonna do this honeymoon once, might as well do it right. Even to the detriment of our wedding budget. And my relationship with my mother, which did eventually recover despite the presence of faux silver plastic cutlery on our reception tables. Ahem. Let's just say we had bigger plans for our teeny budget.
I must say our wedding was still lovely and elegant and sacramental and all the good things one hopes for when looking back on the big day... but let's be honest folks; we got married to go on the honeymoon. Period. (Well, and to build a family and help one another to Heaven, etcetera... but first, the glorious honeymoon.)
My dear husband spent months beforehand scouring the internets for deals. After being laughed at by not a few travel agents upon mention of his budget for a 2 week tropical fete, he decided to go it alone, armed only with his trusty Orbitz faretracker and an iron will.
Exhausted by his efforts
And boy oh boy did he hit a home run. We stayed in a little mother-in-law apartment attached to a gorgeous villa on the Big Island of Hawaii (my completely unbiased favorite of the chain), with the dormant Mauna Loa volcano serving as our front yard and the sapphire expanse of the Pacific Ocean as the view from our lanai.
It. was. awesome.
We did everything we wanted to do plus a few things we hadn't known we wanted to do ... and we stayed on budget. And we had pa-lenty of downtime, let me tell you...
When you're young and carefree and have time (but not money) to burn, those timeshare presentations can yield some worthy rewards for the stouthearted. Let's just say we paid next to nothing for a snorkel cruise, royal luau and rental gear after enduring a mere 4.5 hours of full-court press retail interrogation. In our opinion, totally worth it.
Upon arriving at our island home, we were woefully informed by the Thrifty rental agent that our reserved Seabring convertible (or some other equally embarrassing luxury sedan) was no longer available, and that there was another convertible on the lot we could have and he was so, so sorry...
So cherry-red Mustang convertible keys in hand, we set off for our first adventure as husband and wife - a giddy-fying reality that I revealed to each and every person with whom we came in contact, whether they wanted to know or not.
We went to Mass outdoors on Thanksgiving day and heard the crash of the surf during pauses in the homily. We ate sushi on top of an active lava flow and watched liquid magma pour into the sea. We hiked through Jurassic Park and only narrowly avoided being eaten by dinos. We body-boarded on the most beautiful strip of beach this side of heaven, we snorkled with sea turtles and trigger fish, we drank lots and lots of fruity drinks and gained back all our stress and diet-induced pre-nuptial weight lost ... and we fell more deeply in love.
Because we had eachother to wake up to every day. Because God had finally answered our prayers and our vocational discernment. And because the answer was a person, more real and more wonderful than we could have imagined.
Aloha. We'll be back, be it 10 years or 10 kids from now...
And I sure as hell won't be working this bikini.