I’ve been installing Dreampods for over a year now. Lots of tanks, lots of places, and lots of interesting people. I’ve been all over the country and up into Canada multiple times. It’s been a completely different way of life for me. Mostly amazing, with a little craziness thrown in for good measure. I can’t complain too much, however, because every now and then a Dreampod ends up somewhere truly special and this guy gets to fly out and set it up.
Kailua Kona, Hawaii is located on the big island, which I guess gets it’s name because it’s the biggest. The Dreampod made its way there about a week before I did. When I finally landed, it was evening and I had been on a series of flights for the past 12 hours. I didn’t see much flying in and once I stepped off the airplane there wasn’t much to see either. Fast forward a few days and that would all change. Mike Delangen, owner of Hawaii Float, picked me up and we drove to their Float Center. First thing I noticed was the amazing lava flow formations traveling their way down the mountains towards the ocean. Large rivers of black rock snaking their way across the land. It was beautiful, but also a stark reminder I was on a volcano. They say it’s dormant but what does that really mean, the volcano’s sleeping? Not very comforting.
I met Mike earlier in the year at the annual Float Conference in Portland, Oregon. Now I had the opportunity to meet his family. I would be staying with them during the trip and I was very thankful for the opportunity. He and his wife have two children, a boy and a girl. From the moment I arrived they were all very welcoming and generous. The setup and installation of the pod went incredibly smooth. When it came time to dump salt, Mike’s kids hopped in the pod and mixed the 1,000 pounds up. It was fun watching them play and splash around. Made me smile and think, what a great way for a Dreampod to get started.
The second day I was there I finished up what needed to be done with the pod rather early. This left enough time for a trip to the beach. I don’t remember what the beach was called but I’m sure it was some beautiful Hawaiian name I couldn’t pronounce. The beach was nestled in a small little bay. I now got to walk along the lava rock I had seen the day before in order to get to the beach. I’ve been to a handful of beaches in my day and swim in the ocean every chance I get. This water was the warmest and clearest yet. There’s nothing quite as relaxing and healing for me as wading out into the water and feeling the waves roll in and out. The ocean breathing all around me. It’s one of my favorite things on the planet. After an hour or two we cleaned up and prepared to leave, but not before I snagged a few pieces of coral to bring back home. On the drive back, we stopped at a second beach to say hello to a friend of Mike’s who was having a birthday party.
This beach was equally as stunning and the timing of this stop was beyond perfect. Not only were they just preparing to eat, grilled tri-tip and fish on the beach, yes please. But the sun was just beginning its descent towards the horizon. Everyone at the party was incredibly welcoming and kind, considering I was a stranger eating all their food. In fact, everyone I met while I was in Hawaii was the same. Smiles, handshakes, and a warm energy of welcome, relax. I stood with my feet in the sand, delicious food in my belly, and I watched one of the most beautiful sunsets I have ever seen. The sky was free of clouds and the sun slid slowly towards the edge of the earth. The palette of colors that danced across the sky was awe inspiring and magical. At last it disappeared and darkness came. We said our goodbyes and headed back.
The last day I was there I was blessed once again with the opportunity to watch the sun disappear into the Pacific. With the pod complete and ready for floating, we headed out once more. This time to a small park by the ocean. Mike’s wife, Daisy, offers community acupuncture each Friday. She does this at a park where the backdrop is the tide rolling in and palm trees blowing in the breeze. Daisy was kind enough to offer me some acupuncture, which was a first for me. I kicked back in the chair as she quickly and expertly placed several needles along my arms and legs. It was surprisingly painless. With the needles in place I closed my eyes and drifted off into a deep meditative state, the sound of the waves carrying me away.
I meditate when I float. It’s one of the main reasons I seeked out floating. Inside a pod you have the ability to disconnect from the chaos of life much faster than you would anywhere else. For me, it’s a game changer when it comes to meditation and relaxation. Next time you’re in Kona and it happens to be a Friday afternoon, please make your way to the ocean and seek out Daisy. There will be chairs set up in the park, kids happily running around and playing, Mike relaxing and visiting with friends, and your opportunity to experience what I consider to be a close second to floating.
My time in Hawaii was short but seemed to drift along at a slow relaxing pace. I hear the island has that effect on people. Everything slows down. Being present in each moment becomes easier and easier. Mindfulness and appreciation of even the smallest things in life takes over. For me personally, I can’t imagine a more perfect environment for a Dreampod. Be sure to drop in and say hello to Mike and his family when you’re there. Trust me, you’ll have plenty of time. The island sees to that.
Find them at Hawaiifloat.com