I’m excited and honored to have been invited to attend [Re]Think:Hawaii, a gathering of nerds and tourism pros and entrepreneurs and creative types and, well, whatever I am, I like to use the term “free range human” when asked. I was invited specifically to blog about the event — you’ll read about what happens at [Re]Think:Hawaii here on Holoholo Wale.
Every now and then, someone will ask me, “Hey, what IS the deal with you and Hawaii?” It’s not quite enough to say that I like to vacation there — that’s a pale response to my unexpected connection to a couple of volcanic peaks breaking the surface of the ocean 2000 miles from the place I call home. I like to vacation in British Columbia too, but Hawaii, it’s more like I left some part of myself there and I have to keep going back to check up on whatever it is I left behind. My heart, perhaps.
Since my first trip to the islands, I have been involved on a completely unstructured study of Hawaiian culture and nature, history and economics, trying to understand the Akaka Bill and whether or not the word ha’ole is an insult and making half assed attempts to play along at kanikapila on my uke. I’m not one of those people who feels like I have to adopt the affectations of a culture not my own — I’m no white girl in dreadlocks — but there’s something pulling me even further west. I keep boomeranging back with this voice inside my head saying, “Wait! That story hasn’t been told yet!”
It is a vanity to think that I can be the person to tell those stories, but I try, I try to present a Hawaii that’s more than a beach vacation, a Hawaii with traffic and fast food and politicians, a Hawaii with a tragic history, a Hawaii that’s really another country even while it’s part of the United States. And because of that, I’m excited to be part of an event that, even in name, suggests thinking differently about Hawaii.
At its core, the week is about connecting entrepreneurs and investors during a series of panels, lunches, excursions, dinners, cocktails and aloha style exchange of ideas and relationship building in Hawaii. Our focus is bringing a core group of people from our collective networks together who have a shared interest in solving problems and rethinking tech, business and sustainability.
There’s more on the [Re]Think:Hawaii site, along with a list of some of the confirmed attendees. The not quite completed agenda for Re:Think Hawaii is here. [Re]Think:Hawaii takes place November 1-5 in Waikiki. And yes, I’m bringing my ukulele. I really hope you’ll bring yours so we can play together.