Updated: Jan 4, 2020
Kanekiki- (English Translation) Man Of Water
(My Translation) Sanctuary of connection, health, and healing.
This place has become my home on multiple occasions, offering me peace, space to heal and express, friendship, support, and of course, fresh tropical fruit all day every day. This is a Raw Vegan, Sober, work-trade community on the big island of Hawaii where miracles happen, friendships are made, and Lives are changed. Mine certainly was.
The first time I visited this magical community was in October of 2018. I had dreamed of having this experience since I was 15 years old! I knew that someday I would make that dream a reality, but couldn't imagine that it would happen so soon. I wasn't even intending to go to kanekiki when I made that first trip to Hawaii. It all just fell into place so perfectly, in pure divine timing- as this was just after the most recent lava flow, and they needed some help getting everything back to normal after having to evacuate.
In 2018 I spent just two weeks at this incredible transformative space. It truly allowed me to explore connection on a level that I have never experienced before, and to transcend my old self into a higher vibrational state. We worked together, communicating clearly and effectively to transform that space back into a livable, functional environment for future work traders and interns. I was given such a sense of belonging, seeing how our work payed off and feeling immense gratitude for the opportunity to be part of something so beautiful. The level of pure connection I experienced was unreal, and something that I will forever cherish.
After experiencing all that this beautiful place has to offer, my whole world view was shifted. I knew of people living like this- but to experience it first hand absolutely blew me away. Rising with the sun, fueling my body with fresh living foods from the land, showering in water collected from the rain, Making pure, authentic connections with everyone I met.
I also got the chance to explore a mostly-raw diet during my time on the island. I had some experience eating raw in the past, but this was the longest that I have ever spent where the majority of my diet consisted of fresh raw living foods. This was by far one of the most impactful aspects of my experience here, and something that I will carry with me throughout the rest of my life. Eating Raw truly makes me feel my absolute best, and I know that if I'm ever not doing so great (in any aspect-- physically, mentally, spiritually, etc.) that I can always look at my diet and go back to what I know is best. Simplifying my diet always brings me back to my center without a doubt, every. single. time.
So, after returning to the mainland late 2018, I set my intention to make my way back to Kanekiki. I knew that I wanted this community to have a special role in my life, and I wasn't ready to completely move on just yet. Those two weeks that I spent there in 2018 felt like just a glimpse into what my reality could-and would look like. And just 5 months later (it felt like an eternity) I set off on a one-way flight back to my ohana. Back to my dream life, in paradise, surrounded by my best friends, where the fruit grows like weeds, and the love flows like water. I was home.
Entering that space again brought up a lot of mixed emotions. So much had changed around the property since I had left, the place looked like a whole new community! At the same time, though, it really felt like I had never left. It was so easy for me to just jump right back into the flow of things, and to integrate myself into the new group of interns and work traders. My two short weeks that I spent there before really helped me to feel in place here, and I was so ecstatic to be back!
Something that always brought me joy within this time was the weekly community dinners. No matter how busy of a week, how many people were present, or how sunny or rainy it may have been- every Sunday we would all gather together to enjoy an amazing raw meal. Everyone would prepare their own dish that went along with our chosen theme for that week (sometimes we would do wrap night, noodle night, mexican, asian, thai, etc.) And we would always take time before every meal to share gratitudes. Every person would get a chance to share, if they wish, and we would go around the table, each speaking on something or many things that we were grateful for in the time being. It was always such a beautiful time, and left me feeling so fulfilled as well as full and completely satisfied.
I truly felt the most in alignment that I have ever felt in my life during my time spent at Kankekiki-- even to this day! Starting my mornings off with yoga, or an energizing run through the jungle, completing four hours of work each day with a team effort, enjoying delicious smoothies and authentic connection. My days looked like this every day, and I could never have taken that for granted. It was absolute bliss in every sense of the word. This was the first time in my life that I felt equally supported and independent.
It was a huge risk for me to travel so far on my own, with not much money to my name, and no real plan. However, I am a firm believer that when you jump, the universe jumps with you. In order to make big dreams come true, you must be willing to make big changes, and take big risks. I had no idea how this would all turn out for me. But I listened to my intuitive guides, and followed that impulse to chase my dreams. And in doing so, I was launched straight into my dream life, no holding back, no second guesses. This was only the beginning.
I spent almost four months work trading at Kanekiki before I decided to move on to another community just down the road. I had learned and grown so much during those months and felt that I just needed to see more of the island! I received so much support in this decision, and felt an even greater sense of independence in embarking on this new chapter of my journey. Kanekiki allowed me to discover all the resources I had within me to live out my dream life and create to my highest potential. Not to mention the confidence I was able to gain in order to live my life as authentically to me as possible-- eating a high raw diet, practicing non-violent communication, understanding the importance and value of community.