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Hawaii looks like a beautiful place. And I long to visit one day. It looks like perfection, like life there is a constant state of paradise and beauty. But I do know people who have lived there and it seems that paradise is more like every other place in the world, with it secrets and mundane routines. There is definitely a cost and a downside to the "perfect place." But hey... I'm still going.

Redditor u/Higglesworth98 wanted to hear truth from those that spend their days in paradise by asking.... People who live in Hawaii, what are some misconceptions and/or things people don't realize about island life? [Serious]

Same old, same old....

lilo and stitch water GIF Giphy

Life can often be very routine. There's less space to build new stuff so new developments are generally a much longer timeframe. If you're not comfortable going to the same two beaches, the same three restaurants and the same coffee shop on a regular basis, life can be very difficult here.

captain199

Island Staples

A major employer and source of residency is the US military.

Those of Japanese ancestry make up the second largest ethnicity.

Staples like groceries and gasoline cost a fortune to account for shipping costs.

Yesarooni

Alea....

Lived in Aiea for 3 years.

It's not all about Zippys, Hilo Hattie, and Abc stores.... Apart from the tourist stuff everyone is living and working normal jobs.

Dating is rough if your if your looking for a LTR. Dating pool is small, but tourist and military people we pretty cool for small stints in my case.

Also very few mexican food places. :(.

Orangeglazedcattails

Things of Nightmares....

Damn giant centipedes. Found one a good 10" long on our pillow before going to sleep one night. Also had one get stuck half way in a sticky trap, and I woke up to the sound of it dragging that box all over the kitchen tile trying to escape. Nightmare fuel.

It's a beautiful place to live and has a lot of advantages, but f**k centipedes.

bravehamster

On TV

This isn't a thing anymore, but in the 1960s and 1970s EVERY TV show would have their characters greeted by Hawaiian dancers and get a lei necklace as soon as they stepped off the plane in Honolulu. For awhile I think a lot of people believed this is what happens all the time.

AnthillOmbudsman

Loveless in Paradise....

Bench Press Hulk GIF by Love Island Giphy

Dating is hard in Hawaii. The population is small, and there is a joke that "people are waiting for someone to break up." I could see it being lonely there long term if you didn't find someone quickly or move there with someone.

Reddit

Before Cali....

Born and raised on the Big Island, live in California now.

I can only speak to my own experience in the town I grew up in, on the island I grew up on, but it's a pretty damned normal life, just happens to be in a very beautiful and unique place.

Like any other tourist destination, the vast majority of visitors only see what's on the path of the "guided tour" so to speak. When you peel back that curtain, you just see people living their lives like anywhere else.

Murdathon3000

Peek a Boo

scooby doo halloween GIF by Boomerang Official Giphy

It's not very easy to hide from police on a small island... so "don't do crime kids and stay in school" is a very important message here.

Jonukas96

Crazy Expensive....

I was born and grew up on the mainland. My wife and I have lived in Hawaii (Maui) for almost a decade now. It is definitely a lot more expensive to live here. 2 bags of groceries is generally in the $100 range. Rent is crazy. Gas is stupid expensive. The other end of that is that pay can be higher too, depending on the job. If you get a good job serving somewhere fancy, it's not uncommon to leave with $300-$500 for a shift.

We depend completely on tourism here to survive. So as much as tourists can be annoying, intrusive, rude, and entitled, we need them. Distance is weird. If I'm gonna drive 30 minutes somewhere, we better be having a whole day planned. Eating out somewhere casual is at least $30 for two people. It's really like living anywhere else tho honestly.

I have fast internet, Wal-Mart and Target aren't far away. My family is on the east coast, so seeing them is hard during normal times. Forget about it right now. So that sucks. Also, I miss hoodies, good sammiches, and the woods. But Maui is stunning and magical and living and breathing.

NakedScrub

Influence of the West....

dancer hawaii GIF by ali mac Giphy

Pre Western contact Hawaii had a long and awesome oral tradition, but the islands did not have a written language or written numbers until the 1820s. The Hawaiian Islands did not have a Western system of land surveying/map making/ recording the sale of land until late into the 19th century. Some of the earliest surveys are dated in the 1870s. To this day the state of Hawaii it has two different systems of land registration.

Title searches in Hawaii can be complicated and difficult because many of the original documents were originally written in Hawaiian (which is one of the official languages of the state). Even today there are many clouded titles on land and disputes as to actual ownership dating back to the days of the Hawaiian monarchy, and some of those claims are still in litigation more than a 100 years later.

Maui96793

Climate Needs

I am kind of surprised no one has said that the homeless population is outrageous in Hawaii.

saltywings

A big part of that is the fact that homeless people come from the mainland to be homeless here because it's a more livable climate.

I've met soo many homeless people who came from like Washington or Colorado.

And then also, when all the mental health hospitals were closed, there still hasn't been any programs or ways to help people who needed those services and therefore, homeless.

And then now Covid.

Hi_Supercute

Molokai'i it's just what it is...

Relaxed Island Life GIF by Sentosa Giphy

Depending on which island you're on, you legit can be out of food and have to wait on the barge to come by for basic crap.

It's like living in the mainland when you have shortages from storms and such. The grocery store just has what it has and if it doesn't wait a few days for the next barge.

On Maui and Oahu and the big island you don't really see this, but out on Molokai'i it's just what it is.

payperplain

Oahu

Born and raised on Oahu. Every local I know doesn't wear shoes or slippers in the house. And most dislike going to tourist spots (like Waikiki). Also a half hour drive is considered a long drive.

kira621

Bad Times

My dad moved to Oahu and stayed out there for many years. I would go visit when I could.

The biggest thing I noticed was the drugs and outright poverty that seems to go over looked. With that came violence. My dad got mugged and put in the hospital coming out of a bar. I was beat up walking out of a hotel once.

per_alt_delete

The Theme Park

We went to Kauai a couple years ago and while there we attended the agricultural fair. A local told us he dropped $500 on he family at the fair. He said that was it as far as amusement parks so every year the fair was the thing. It hit us then that for us we could go a couple hours to say Busch Gardens or a day to Disney World. If they were to go to anything like that other than the fair it would be a major haul to the mainland.

AllSoulsNight

Big Island

look at this turn around GIF by Shinesty Giphy

You don't honk (much) and NEVER flip off someone in traffic.

A quick shaka will do, since you may know them or see them at the store soon anyway.

We lived on O`ahu for a decade, and have family born and raised on there and the Big Island, but will never be "local".

Don't try to talk pidgin. I know the lingo and tonal inflection, but still, just no.

Wrathchilde

I'll be there for you...

Lived on Oahu for about 4 years from 2012-2016. How expensive everything is is definitely at the top of the list. The one that most people don't expect is that I had a hard time making friends. I'm guessing this could be hard in any tourism based place but I'd go to the restaurant or bar and meet tons of people. They were all there for the week. It seems that even residents my age were all only there for a short timeframe as well. I just had a constantly rotating group of friends and it got old.

That's part of the reason I moved back to the mainland. Also everyone was always stealing stuff. Mopeds and other goods get stolen all day every day if it's not locked, it's gone. It was frustrating the amount of stuff that would just go missing or get broken into.

All that being said, I would live there again. I do miss it every once in awhile.

FeelinFishy16

flying out...

Was stationed at Oahu. When I first got there I thought the place was beautiful and had a great time. But after 3 years I kinda got sick of all the disrespectful tourists and the fact that it is a small island and the only way for me to leave was flying.

aznsensation8

Haole

Being called a haole can be derogatory or neutral depending on how it's used. I'm a white woman married to a brown man. Once, we were having dinner out while I was pregnant and our server told us we were going to have the cutest hapa-haole baby. She was pretty nice and I'm pretty sure she said it completely innocuously.

Another time I was visiting the Big Island (I lived on Oahu) and was checking out an off-the-beaten-road beach that belonged exclusively to the locals. It was crystal clear that I wasn't welcome, and though they never called me it to my face, I heard them call me a haole amongst themselves and it definitely wasn't neutral.

When I first moved to Oahu, my husband's employer hosted us for a dinner party with some of his new co-workers.

Another white dude who had lived there for about 20 years pulled me aside and told me point-blank that I should expect to be called a haole and not to let it bother me. That I was a white person from the mainland in their space - it was my trade off. Broadly speaking, it wasn't really an issue while I lived there. Most people were really nice as long as you weren't acting like a self-entitled fool.

Reamund

The Florida of Paradise...

bob ross painting GIF Giphy

Lived in Honolulu for four years. People tend to think of Hawaii as a peaceful, laid back place but really it's a freaking madhouse.

I also lived in Florida for five years and I always tell people that Hawaii really is what people only think Florida is. I've shared many stories on Reddit over the years of the endless string of lunatics and crazies I dealt with on nearly a daily basis out there. There's something about being on a remote island in the middle of nowhere that really brings out the loony in people.

schnit123

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REDDIT

Image by Foundry Co from Pixabay

Now that college has become a standard requirement for so many jobs and careers, there is a massive push by high schools to get their graduating students accepted and enrolled at an undergraduate college.

On the whole, that's undoubtedly a great thing. A more educated workforce will be prepared to solve the most complex issues facing human beings in the next several decades.

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Image by Gianni Crestani from Pixabay

*The following article contains discussion of suicide/self-harm.

The person on the other end of a 911 call has a truly remarkable job.

For those who don't play that professional role, we hope to never encounter the 911 call interaction. But if we do find ourselves making that call, the moment is an anomaly in our lives.

The chaos, the panic, the racing heart, and the desperation are all emotions we, ideally, don't experience on a regular basis.

But for the operator on the other end, our call is one in a long line of calls they've received all day, and all the workdays before that one.

It's difficult to imagine being embedded in those uniquely urgent, emergency moments all the time.

Some Redditors who are on the other end of that call shared their experiences on the job.

WhimsicalxxButcher asked, "911 dispatchers what has been your most creepy/unnerving call?"

For a few, the most unnerving moments were the calm callers.

There was something just so eerie about how level-headed the faceless human being on the other end could be through such a desperate, tragic moment.

Almost Clinical 

"I had a friend who worked as a 911 dispatcher and he always said the worst call he ever had was a ~20 year old kid who committed suicide by mixing a bunch of chemicals together in his car to produce hydrogen sulfide gas."

"He said that the most unnerving part was hearing him calmly listing off the chemicals, the type of gas produced, and the effects of hydrogen sulfide on the body (namely the almost instant death it causes at high concentrations)."

"He ended the call by providing the address of the parking lot he was in and saying that nobody should approach the vehicle without hazmat equipment."

"Apparently after that there was a whooshing sound as he dumped the last chemical into the mix, and then the line went dead silent aside for a quiet fizzing noise."

"I know that call screwed him up because he almost never talks about stuff that happens to him on the job. He quit a few months later to go into construction management, and frankly I can't blame him."

-- iunoyou

Planned Out 

"A woman called me, saying she was going to kill herself. She was gassing herself. Gave me her name & address then said she was just going to lie down and 'go to sleep.' And stopped responding to me."

"I kept the line open, trying to get her to speak to me, and eventually heard officers forcing their way in to find her body. I guess she just wanted someone to find her body."

-- mozgw4

Before It Set In 

"When I got a call from a 6 year old who got home from school and laid down to take a nap with his dad. His dad never woke up."

"The kid was so calm when calling it broke my heart."

"I ended up leaving dispatch shortly after. I was good at compartmentalizing the job for the year I was doing it, but it would've broken me in the long run."

-- tasha7712

Other 911 operators were unfortunate enough to receive a call from the very last person they wanted to hear from: a loved one.

These dispatchers' unique position gave them the unexpected access to a family member or friend at their most dire moments.

No More of That 

"My family member is a long time first responder, and 'retired' into doing dispatch. He heard the address (someone else was taking the call) and realized it was his daughter's house."

"He rushed over there just in time to see them wheeling her body out. Overdose."

"Five months later, he was called to his ex-wife's place because his grandson (son of the daughter who recently passed) had his door locked, lights on, but wasn't responding to his grandma."

"He broke the door down and found him deceased in bed. Overdose."

"He's very stoic after years of all sorts of traumatic situations but my heart hurts whenever I think of what all of this must have felt like. Like sand through your fingers."

-- bitchyhouseplant

Knowing the Address

"Not me, but my grandma. I was sitting in the dispatch office, (very small one only 2 dispatchers including my grandma) but she put out a dispatch that there was a gun shot from my best friends address."

"My heart sank to my stomach and broke later that day. He committed suicide."

-- OntaiSenpuu

When it Happened 

"My uncle passing away. Worked as a small town dispatcher for a year or so. Had a bunch of messed up stuff happen on shift, but this call came in in the still hours of the night. Small town, so not many calls after midnight."

"I answered and recognized the name and address on caller id. Aunt was in a frenzy so didn't recognize my voice. I remained calm and got ems and fire rolling to them, but by my aunt's own words he was already blue."

"I went thru debriefing and mandated therapy for a couple other things that happened, but never really talked to anyone about this. I just try not to think about it."

"That was the call I figured out I needed to find a different job."

-- dangitjon

Finally, some simply had a front row seat to sudden tragedy.

These operators were flies on the wall when disaster struck. They never asked to witness what they witnessed, but sometimes that came with the territory.

A Holiday Tragedy 

"My mom is a 911 dispatcher. Early on she said one Christmas Eve while working she got a call from an elderly lady who's husband had just collapsed(and died) from a heart attack and in the background Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas music was playing on blast."

"The lady was screaming and crying and begging for her husband to wake up but my mom could hear his gurgling in his last breathes. She doesn't listen to or watch Alvin and the chipmunks since."

-- Blueflowerbluehair

What is it About Christmas?

"Christmas night. 911 call with crying child on the other end. A neighbor had run her car over her mom during a domestic."

"The mom crawled to the porch bleeding and the child saw the car coming back. I had her hide quietly in a closet with the cordless phone."

"The 10 year old child was crying and screamed that she hated Christmas. She was afraid of the police when they got there."

"I kept her on the phone until she felt safe enough to give the phone to an officer. I almost fainted after that call was over. Had nightmares for a while."

-- 2FunBoofer

Close to Home 

"Not a dispatcher but I handle radio communications for the Coast Guard. One night I was on the radio and got a call from an 11 year old kid whose boat had started to sink. He was out with his dad and 6 year old brother."

"They had been hit by another boat and his father got knocked unconscious. I remember the entire conversation up until the radio had gone underwater."

"They ended up finding his dad floating on his back alive but the two boys didn't make it. That one really fu**ed with me because my two littlest brothers were around the same age as the youngest."

-- HIRSH2243

A Horrible Clock 

"Another one that stays with me was the man who called in. It was the anniversary of his adult son having hanged himself. He'd now come home to find his wife had done the same."

"That date is always going to be a black day for him."

-- mozgw4


If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

Again, we hope you never have to use the 911 call in your life. Nobody wants to be involved in a sudden emergency or a tragic incident.

But hopefully, if you do, an operator like one of these thoughtful, sensitive Redditors is on the other end.

Image by Nguyen Dinh Lich from Pixabay

When I was moving on from middle school to high school my parents had me tested for the "gifted" program. By some miracle I passed and was accepted. And then I turned it down. Everyone was irritated. "This will pave the way for any college you want! You'll learn so much!" his path will set you up for life!" Every adult tried valiantly to sell me this merchandise but in my gut I just wasn't buying it. So I "settled" a level below, merely advanced classes. And upon reflection... it was the best choice I ever made.

Redditor u/dauntlessdaisy was wondering how far some in life got by asking... For those of you who were considered "gifted" in school, what are you doing with your life now?
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Image by Markus Spiske from Pixabay

There's a million things that can happen to you while out on on the road.

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