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Love Stories of Hawaii

Timeless Love

Honolulu, 1968
Dedicated to Sonny & Lynn Horne

Submitted by Betsy

I've only had the delight of visiting once, when I was only about three years old, but Hawaii will always be linked in my mind to the best kind of romance, the kind that lasts forever. My parents are from Maine and my father was in Saigon in 1968 when he wrote my mother to meet him in Honolulu so they could get married while he was on leave. They'd known each other in high school, through each of their failed first marriages. Most of what I remember of Hawaii is fleshed out by lovely photos of my young mother and myself by the turquoise sea and under palm fronds, dressed in new muu-muus and pastel leis, taken by my new father. It took a couple of years after the Hawaian wedding trip for the paperwork to go through so he could adopt me, becoming forevermore my "Daddy". I remember the smell of the tropical flora, driving around in the back of a rented convertible, with my just-married parents holding hands up front. The Daddy I got then, the one who wouldn't dream of marrying my mother without her little daughter by her side, is the same one who stuck by me through all my especially rough teenage years, and the camera he used on that trip is the one I still use today. I "borrowed" it from him for a photography class in high school and never gave it back, and he never objected more than laughingly. My parents have the best kind of romance. They drive each other nuts, but you can't imagine one of them without the other, being totally goofy over thirty-year old family jokes and twenty-year old arguments, drawing the rest of us, giggling helplessly, into their world. Hawaii is where all that started for me, and it represents everything I could ever look for in a romance, a best friend who sticks by you- and your crazy daughter- through everything. It is everything I teach my sons about what family is, defined less by the blood in your veins than the love in your heart. It is romance steadfast and without limitation, whether surrounded by starlight, tropical breezes and sun-baked sand, or icy pines and wood stoves.

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