• Cathy Selene Kay

Re-Routed From Isle To Isle


Today was the day I was to officially move from L.A. to the island of New York. Tomorrow I was to be waking up to a brand new jet-set life from that concrete jungle to everywhere, up in the air with excessive radiation and being in constant motion.

But life had other plans for me. Instead, today I am on the island of Kauai, surrounded by grounding elements, earthing everyday at the sea or in lush greenery, and living among slow nature in regards to literally everything here.

I came with only one suitcase and a duffel bag which was also not exactly planned. What was to be a month long visit is now a longer term commitment and all feels totally correct.

I'd been to Kauai before. It was the second of the Hawaiian Islands I'd ever visited. The first was a trip to the Big Island where I had never felt so free, in love and fully charged by a physical place before. Kauai was different. It was, and is, intense in a beautiful way. Two weeks into making a life here and I'm just beginning to discover her secrets: Kauai, the oldest of all the Hawaiian Islands, is known to either accept your presence or send you packing.

I was warned when I arrived that living here forces you to do two things at all times: 1. Let go, and 2. Be humble, both in ways you didn't know you weren't or could. I immediately assumed that the letting go notion was a spiritual or existential endeavor over time, but I soon came to realize that in Kauai, it applies to the material realm first, and fast.

There are many reasons for this, notably that the climate eventually destroys everything here, from leather to cars. Then there's the accessibility factor as it's literally a small land mass in the middle of the ocean with strict import/export laws. Yes there's a Costco and a Walmart here which for better and worse connects the tiny island to mass consumption. For most everything though you can expect to often pay more for less and to weed through tourist-geared fare everywhere.

All said, I am truly in love with and in awe of the distinct energy of Kauai. It's a no bullshit, leave your ego and your baggage at the door essence. It's a vibe quite opposite of my chic life in Los Angeles, and my almost life as a jet-setter out of New York. Letting go and being humble is an extended metaphor of "things" not mattering here. As a matter of fact, any attachment to your things will have you questioning your priorities somehow, someway, soon enough. Is Kauai another word for Karma, I wonder?

The island of Kauai wasted no time with me from the gate. My first few days here I had to make the heart-breaking decision to let go of my beloved cat MoonLight who was in California with sitters. Now she is adopted by the perfect cat lover friend of mine in San Francisco. That's another story but better to have her be in my loving circle than having her unsettled during and beyond this transit of mine.

What's interesting is that if I had ended up in New York as "planned", I was already at a loss of how to keep up her happy life at home as I would be living out of suitcases most of the time. I never imagined that the next place I'd end up would have a strict pet quarantine, or my next choice, Australia (which gave me the same peace as the Big Island), having the same restrictions. It was time to accept what life was showing me:

My strongest attachment left after a long period of letting go of things, ideas, people and my recently passed dog/best friend for 14 years, was to my sweet, beautiful Burmese cat MoonLight. It was rooted in deep gratitude for her loving service to me over the past year and a half since adopting her. In turn it would be of great disservice to her to keep her in my "possession" without offering her the best life I could, and of which she had become accustomed to.

Thus, she is now being pampered by someone else I adore and though at a physical distance, I still get to be a part of her new, wonderful life. Alas my first Kauai challenge of letting go still stings as it heals, and yet in true island fashion feels intuitively aligned. I knew I had been called here with no cords to distract me from the work that has already begun.

So I'm saying yes to this new adventure and Mahalo (thank you) for the detours life places in front of us. From the wise words of U2: "What you don't have you don't need it now. What you don't know you can feel it somehow."


Copyright © 2019 Cathy Kay.  All Rights Reserved.