Welcome to Kauai

So we are on Kauai now, the “Garden Island”. Also known, possibly, as the rooster island, or the rural island, or something like that. With 67,000 residents on the whole island, it feels tiny. We drove a quarter way around the island in an hour the first day, and that was with some stops.

We are far from the resorts where we are staying. It is…interesting.

Our cottage for the week.

Our cottage for the week.

On one level, it is totally fine! Lots of space, a comfortable bed, linens provided and so on. On the other hand it is stretching my comfort zone. There is a composting toilet, which I think is amazing and smart and so cool. We don’t have to deal with the waste itself, or the buckets, or anything like that, but we get to help the environment by using no water to flush and using our own waste to nourish the farm we are staying on. I get to see how much waste we produce, which is eye opening and a great insight to what modern cities deal with. Having recently read The Ghost Map, it was another, more personal reminder of the sheer volume of waste humans have in their bodies! But…it is outside, and there are flies. I find myself “holding it” because I don’t want to use up the sawdust that covers it, or I feel like I drink too much water and have to pee too much, or that we are going to fill up the tank sooner than the hosts think and they will be disgusted or something. I don’t know where I get this crap, but, there it is. So that is the toilet.

And then. I have a cold and I blew my nose last night and left the tissue on the windowsill. I came back a few hours later and it was crawling with ants. Ants up in the snot, ants around the paper, ants flocking to it and flowing all over the whole windowsill. I just don’t like it. I know it isn’t bad or really even dirty. It is damn obviously natural, but I am not used to it and it gets under my skin. I don’t want to think about ants crawling over me while I sleep, and now that I have seen them 2 inches from where my head is at night, I am not sure how well I will sleep. Ugh.

And…roosters – they are a bona fide problem on Kauai, apparently since a tsunami set a bunch free in the 1970s and now they roam around, crowing non-stop. Including several near our place, which wake us up, and then we hear the road noise.

I don’t mean to complain. It is a really cool experience to be here. I am just having some adjustment pains. I hope that soon I will want a composting toilet in our house and that I will otherwise be inspired from this lifestyle.

For now, I am ambivalent.


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