I spent some time on the West side of the Big Island last week, and a trip over there is always great.  Friendly people, stark landscape, nice amenities, well-groomed golf courses, etc.  While there, it dawned on me that those of us who live on Oahu think of the neighbor islands as just that, neighbors.  Ok, so conversely, the people on the Big Island or Maui or Lanai think of Oahu as a "neighbor island."  Nothing wrong with that, but sometimes, those of us on Oahu get a little Honolulu-centric in our thinking, and we forget that there really is another world out there across the ocean on our neighbor islands.

Conversations with Big Island residents focused on their issues, their needs, their dining places, their sports teams, their traffic.  Honolulu?  Ho hum.  Even finding a Honolulu newspaper was a chore at times--because that's not really their "local" news, is it?  It's all a matter of perspective, and it was refreshing for me to consciously look at the differences among people and places right here in our own great State, let alone other places throughout the country or the world.

There is a big world out there, with many differences, and part of that world and those differences can be found right here in our own backyard, separated by water.  So the next time you take a trip through this vast neighborhood that we call Hawaii, celebrate our own local diversity, as you Think About It.