I met with a couple last week who came to me from a friend living in Seattle. They treated me to a fantastic mai tai at Don the Beachcomber as they asked about what life was REALLY like on this island and where the best neighborhoods were to consider moving into. I enjoyed sharing what I know about the different climate zones, cost of housing, crime rate, desirability based on my friends who have rented and bought homes in West Hawaii. I think I am a great resource! (Although I am NOT a Realtor, you can find out about the housing market without having to connect with ME, here!) We also had a nice chat about the energy of the island, as well!
I also have become somewhat of a “future adviser” for friends on the mainland waiting for their children to get into college before they make the move over here. They want to know the job outlook, things to do for “empty nesters” and retirees. (Don’t come with a medical problem is usually my response, due to our lack of specialty care for the elderly!)
Tomorrow morning, I am meeting with another “island hopeful”. I should bring my pack of coffee samples, coupons and referrals when I meet with her. I know there has to be a business opportunity here somehow..;-) She came as a referral from a parent at my children’s school and is actually touring the school this week. One thing that I enjoy about doing these meetings is that I get to help people. It’s quite a shock to the system to move to an island.
I met another family who recently moved here a few weeks ago and their daughter was terrified of the ocean..which I found out when I encouraged her to jump in off a rock and she almost drowned me and then blew my eardrums out screaming about urchins, coral, jelly fish and rocks. If you plan on moving here, you must accept that its a FAMILY decision if you bring your kids. Get them out of the house before they arrive on this “adventure island” because it takes a person who knows how to balance on lava, swim in the ocean, blow off large cockroaches and centipedes as part of the terrain and treat geckos as small house guests to feel good here.
Another woman who found me through my blog shared a background in PR/Marketing with me. We met at the Mauna Lani and she treated me to lunch while I shared with her the business climate here and how to get more involved. Since she already bought a piece of land here and wanted to develop, I also encouraged her not to hire an off island architect, as most people who don’t work here don’t understand the lava/aquifers/building codes we have in West Hawaii.
Sharing my Aloha and experience will hopefully ease the moving transition for these folks and I want them to know they have someone who they can trust to connect them to resources and information. This blog has really helped create a virtual “Welcome Wagon” and I hope to create something that will continue to help new island residents! If you want to ask a question, go to Facebook and find me at Facebook.com/365Kona. I have a great community there who can be a resource, too!