This is Life, Based on a True Story  

Maui's magical moments

I’m starting my mid-life crisis. This, according to someone who is close to me. How long are these things supposed to last?

If a mid-life crisis for me is dictated by an overwhelming need for simplicity and sleeping in till 9 a.m. on weekends, then I’ll take it.

What brought all this on was a recent trip to Maui. I’d never been there before this trip and it was an eye-opener.

I was struck most vividly by how easy life on the island is. I kept telling my travelling partner that I felt like we’d stepped back in time.

In Canada, practically anywhere you go, you can access free Wi-Fi. In Maui, that’s not the case. They don’t even have free Wi-Fi at the airport (OK, that wasn’t necessarily a good thing and was the one thing I wanted to change about that place).

But outside of Wi-Fi and technology, I was amazed at how undeveloped it is there. There are hundreds of acres of old sugarcane fields that have just been left to the land. If those wide-open fields were here in the Okanagan, they would’ve been developed with high rises no one could afford and big-box commercial stores.

That’s where my mid-life crisis began apparently. Although I’m still not calling this a bad thing. It makes me feel a bit edgier, braver, even a bit careless … but I digress.

I was beyond sad to leave - not just for the obvious reasons of it being the end of a vacation, but more so because I knew the reality I was coming back to.

For the record, my reality is not horrific – just tedious and monotonous.

I work to pay homage to my mortgage. It takes me over two years to be able to save enough money to take a trip like this – and that’s not taking my kids with me. That’s just me taking me. And actually, the big costs for this trip were all covered, courtesy of my partner’s hotel and travel points … so maybe it’s more like three years between trips for me.

Something’s gotta change. I tend to live in a permanent “hurry up and get there” mode. Not by choice, but rather by design. I’m always seeking and striving and yearning for more – in every facet from my job to my clothes to my housing.

I’ve got it in my head that to show my kids what success is, they need to see me as leading a successful life. Which basically equates to they need to see me getting promotions, having tons of friends, keeping a clean house, eating healthy, having nice clothes, driving a new car, being eternally happy, and basically just living the dream.

Umm, except that all of that just listed, is not me living the dream. It’s just me stressing out trying to figure out my next move or step to stay on top of everything – from my mortgage to my friends’ lists.

And since when did we, as a society, get to a point when we need “lists” of our friends? See, not only am I starting my mid-life crisis, I’m also becoming a curmudgeon in the process. Am I too young for this? I prefer to think of it as me getting wise.

And despite what it may come across as, it’s not that I care less. It’s quite the opposite in that I care more.

I care more now about feeling spiritually healthy. That means it’s time to simplify what I’ve made complicated.

So I’m starting the purge process of my life – everything from clothing and shoes to dishes, and yes – even my house.

Sounds drastic, right? Well I guess it is to a degree. But I’m finally getting it. It’s about quality over quantity.

Part of that purging process is purging my mind as well … and maybe even how I write these columns. I want to try and bring some of my newfound edginess into my writing … oooh, this could get exciting.

Boy, that was quite the vacation! Leave here with visions of beaches and pineapples. Come back here in full mid-life crisis mode … although I’m still not convinced that’s it. I think it’s more of an awakening – and the desire to pay homage to the beach, sand and sun more often than I have been.

Thanks for reading.


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About the Author

Tanya Gunderson has been writing for the heck of it for many years. Her inspiration comes from her kids, their friends and the craziness of life. She takes great pleasure in exposing life for what it really is and has an open-book approach to her writing.

Her formal education and background include a blink-and-you miss-it stint in the radio and television industry, but it gave her an opportunity to write professionally on a few different occasions.

Email: [email protected]



The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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