Editor’s Note: This post is 10 years old.

I get asked the million dollar question frequently ” So what’s it like to live in Hawaii”? “Ahh how do I answer that?” is what I ponder in my head awkwardly as I debate whether or not to give them the vacation version or the real deal.  My persona of being “Army Wife 101” makes it hard for me to tell PCSing spouses moving here, that my personal opinion of Hawaii is that it sucks living here for an extended period of time.  I do not want to ruin the thoughts of what their home will be like , so I usually give them what I like to call a “PR” answer. This is one of those cliche answers that doesn’t really answer the question , but tries to package nicely.

Well I think it’s about time I share my thoughts, seeing as to how I am constantly asked (which by the way I don’t mind) . I must warn you though some of my thoughts are not pretty, and that everyone’s opinion is different. Just because I hate it here does not mean you won’t love it.

With that I bring you Hawaii…One Army Wife’s Thoughts:

The Arrival

I arrived here in March of 2009 (insert the Hawaiian music here) and as I stepped off the plane and entered into the breezeway in Honolulu International Airport, I took in the scent of the Hawaiian air. Being that I was afraid of flying, it was a miracle that anyone got  me to fly over a body of water for over 8 hrs. We proceeded to the military liaison desk got signed in and hopped in the government shuttle which was to transport us here to Schofield Inn on Schofield Barracks. It was 10:30PM at night when we arrived and I was so exhausted I couldn’t focus or see well enough to see what it looked like outside the shuttle windows. We arrived here on Schofield checked into lodging and the adventure began.

Like any newbies to Hawaii, the next day we awakened, picked up our rental car and set out to explore the island. I had heard prior to arriving here that we shouldn’t try to visit all the attractions at once because you will run out of things to do , let’s just say that is true to a certain extent (more on that later). In any event I was actually happy here at the beginning. My list of reasons why I was happy are below:

* My kids were getting the experience of a lifetime. They were going to explore different cultures, different foods, beautiful scenery, beaches and historical attractions such as Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona.

* I did not grow up in a area near many beaches, so the thought of having a few dozen surrounding me seemed pretty nice.

* The weather is always beautiful and consistent, so clothes shopping for the family was easier. Flip flops in every color sounds great to me.

*The biggest reason was that it gave members of our families a chance to come to Hawaii, when they normally wouldn’t have come here.

So there you have it, my very few reasons why I liked it it here. So I guess by now your probably saying well after all of that “What the hell is there not to like”?

The Fantasy

Well you see I believe people get to engulfed in these fantasies of paradise. They think Hawaii and they automatically envision palm trees lining every street, a beach in your backyard and mai tai’s everywhere. Little do they know that when they arrive here at Schofield they are in for rude awakening. Schofield is in a small little dumpy town 20 minutes from the North Shore called Wahiawa. Wahiawa is ghetto. I am from NY and let’s just say I would rather walk threw any of those streets then Wahiawa even in the day time. Wahiawa consist of some fast food joints, a few hole in the wall sit down joints, some rundown strip clubs , convenience stores and a General Hospital that looks like someone swallowed the 70’s and threw it back up. Rundown apartments surround the base as well. When I want to get fast food I head in the opposite direction to a town called Mililani. If you choose to live offpost and want to live close, Mililani should be your first option as well.

The Schools

The schools here are HORRIBLE!!!!! I had always assumed that if a school was onpost then it automatically was a DOD school. This not the case at all. I’ll be honest and say that I’ve lucked up and my kids have had good teachers, but damn these kids are off so much it makes you wonder how much are they really learning. Last year we went through furlough Fridays due to budget cuts, and basically every Friday the children were off. Lest not forget that every Wednesday the kids have half a day . The school day is over at 2:05pm. This is the shortest school day I have ever seen. My kid has PE once a month and my daughter has 2 recesses a day ( she is in the 6th grade). Visit here to read reviews on the schools .

Why It Get’s Old Being Here Really Fast?

1.For starters you can drive around the entire island of  Oahu in four to six  hours depending on traffic. ( I honestly think it’s less time then that , but i’ll be generous.)

2.Unless you love going to the beach every weekend, are a water nut, or are passionate about the outdoors (hiking mountain climbing) , you will quickly run out of things to do. We have a sea life park comparable to Sea World minus several attractions , space and rides. There is also WetnWild water park again water which is okay but ummm…how many times are you really going to go there? Pearl Harbor is a must see and I was honored to have the privilege to visit but naturally it’s not some place you would to go weekly. The Nex is nice to walk around but after you walk around what are you going to do ? Pearl Ridge Mall was ok until my friend got her pocketbook grabbed by a meth addict during a day time visit, so that pretty much prevented me from wanting to go there by myself. Ala Moana Mall in Honolulu is awesome but just not my frugal everyday place of shopping. It’s nice once in a while. The Swap meet is hot and nothing but rows and rows of people selling the same 5 for $20 teeshirts . It was nice when we arrived and wanted to send souvenirs back home, or when family visits and you want to take them somewhere where they can get cheap souvenirs too.

In reference to the size of the island you really can drive around the island in four hours. The island goes in one big circle. There are no bridges connecting Oahu to neighboring islands, and due to some environmental mess the ferry no longer is in operation. You can count on buying tickets for every member of your family to fly to another island if that is your thing. Speaking of other islands everyone screams about flying to them, but if your tired of being on an island…are you really going to fly to another one?  Unless you can get some great ticket prices to wherever your from( and sometimes you can get great prices) , count on using that nice hunk of deployment savings you stored. Space A is wonderful, but don’t be fooled it’s free for a reason and that reason usually consists of being trapped in a hotel or terminal of sorts at a airforce base for a few days.

Lastly I had the joyous pleasure of being caught in a Tsunami scare this past February. Imagine your husband is deployed , you wake up in the middle of the night to take a piss and you hear the disheveled looking newscaster on the local news at 1am saying expected time of impact is 11:19AM and sirens will sound at 5:30AM. Ummm excuse me my first thought is the local news is not supposed to be live at 1am and 2nd of all “impact” doesn’t sound so good. Being that my husband was deployed and I slept with my laptop my friend Stephanie buzzed me on Yahoo and informed me of how she was so scared that she was going to get a flight out of here. I took one look at my bank account and pretty assumed that my kids and I would meet our maker here on this side of the mountain in Wahiawa.

There are two more parts of living here that I have yet to discuss which is the FOOD & BUGS! That is a whole post in itself and I would rather discuss it separately. With that said stay tuned for Part 2 of “Hawaii…One Army Wife’s Thoughts on Why She Hates Living Here”.

Read Part 2



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Krystel is the mom of two and an Army Wife. In addition to Army Wife 101 she is the Co-Founder of SoFluential.com a digital media agency that connects brands with the military market. She has appeared on MSNBC ,FOX LA and formerly was a weekly contributor to HLN's "Raising America". She has written for various outlets including Sheknows and Lifetime and is a big fan of cupcakes and french fries.

148 Comments on Hawaii…One Army Wife’s Thoughts on Why She Hates Living Here!

  1. Space A is the same way here in Germany… a big pain in the you know where. My husband is trying to get orders to Hawaii. We have a family member and a very close friend stationed there. I grew up in FL… and lived at the beach. After not seeing a beach for close to 3 years now, what I wouldn’t give to live on an island surrounded by water. Along with living in Florida, we have a hurricane “season”, I know a little different then a Tsunami but we’re still hoping to go there :)

  2. My husband and I are stationed in Hawaii at Schofield and I couldnt agree more…..urgh I tell everybody it was nice when we vacationed here but its an island in the middle of the pacific? we do the same things all the time…hiking, beach, and MORE beach….it just gets so old!

    • And Stephanie how much more honestly will you do back at home? Most friends and family I know on the west coast do less traveling than I do, basically work and do everything I do here with the exception of the beach? I grew up in the Islands, when I travel to the Mainland each year for up to a Month, I can’t wait to get home. Its now 2012 and so much has developed that makes Hawaii a great place to live but to each his own??? Aloha

      • I think what you forget is that yes while their are alot of beaches and all that jazz in Hawaii , you can’t go anywhere else. That is the biggest thing for people like me, once you have enough Hawaii all you can afford-ably do thats’s close is go to another island. Personally I just moved from Hawaii last year and being back hear is great , I don’t feel so trapped. Once you get past the beaches and the vacation feel especially when you LIVE there and have to deal with real life and not just the vacation feel then it get’s overrated. Like you said to each his own but many people really don’t actually like being stuck on an island.

  3. I have always wanted to go to Hawaii but hubby said he would fight getting stationed there. I know that the dogs will have to be quarantined and that right there pretty much stops me from wanting to go there. As much as my husband loves being in the water I can see where even that can get pretty old really quickly

    • Your gods do not have to be quarantined if you follow the procedures to get them here with all their medical requirements. I flew into hawaii with my exhusband and my two dogs in the cabin. They do take your dogs from you at the jetway to a screening area, but if your flight is early in the day, you can pick them up in a couple hours. If you land at night, you will have to wait til the next day. But they will not be quarantined for weeks or months at all if you follow the steps.

    • Do the quarantine before you get there. It’s just getting everything in order. Now I’ve not gotten him off the plane, but he’s on the 5 day or less, wish me luck.

  4. That is kind of the same deal with me. I live in Okinawa, Japan. Everyone thinks that because its called ‘Japan’ its suppose to look like Tokyo. And it kind of does the first mile that you get out of the commercial airport. And then the buildings start to get smaller and smaller.

  5. Thanks for sharing this with us. I admit my first thought about being stationed in Hawaii brings back a wonderful trip I took there in 2000. But I have to remind myself it wouldn’t be like a vacation, my husband would be gone or working most of the time and not everything is wonderful about it.

    Do you find other people just love it there and want to stay forever? I encountered that in Germany. Either you wanted to move back to the US or you just loved it and wanted to stay forever.

    • Hi Julie,

      Thanks for stopping by! Your absolutely right …either you love it here or you hate it. I don’t think there is a inbetween lol.

      I have found several people who love it, but a few are people who are younger way younger then me and for them this is party city , or those who are almost done in their careers and have decided to settle here. You then have the group are my age with kids and just love the beach life and for them this is paradise :)

      I need a roadtrip , I miss other types of food and just need a change!

      Visit again for Part 2 :)

  6. I really thought Hawaii was a lil different but it seems like it would be the same as living in Alaska…and I hated living in Alaska…you get tired of doing the same thing over and over and especially for 3 or more years…

  7. I couldn’t help myself but to laugh at the “insert Hawaiian music here”. Too comical! I actually am the in between person. I do not mind the scenery, beaches on the weekend(grew up in Cali), not being able to drive for hours to another location. We have found several things to do on the island and still have no where come close to seeing/doing them all. I still want to learn how to paddle board, go to the falls, a luau, hike Diamond Head. The list goes on and on lol. Things I don’t like….well I usually hold my tongue but here goes. I do not like the racism that exists on this island toward the “Mainlanders” or just people who are just not local. I did not feel it until I had to go job hunting. I had to go job hunting and throw out my previous plans to finally apply for nursing school. They do not consider military dependants as residents and we can not even compete in a spot for the wait list they have. In a way I understand. Its a community school and they want you to be able to give back to the community when your done with your schooling. It’s just not fair to the military spouses though. I do not want to go to school for anything else so now I work. Oh and my kids actually like going to school here(elementary thru high school). The older two actually say its harder than the previous school at Fort Hood. The elementary school teachers are doing a great job in my eyes. They seemed to be very concerned about educating my children. So there you have it. Am I in the middle? I’m not sure what side I land more on, however, I am just going to make it work for us while were here.

    • Wow..I thought they did consider us. I’m glad you told me. Would it help if you got your drivers license? That would just be another year, though. Anyone have any clue on housing? I undertand that you can’t get on certain parts of the Navy housing.

      • Hi suzy, in order to be considered for residency, you have to be here for a year, file income taxes here, and register to vote, to even be considered for residency status here. I was told they that want people that will stay here permenantly to work, and military spouses don’t stay. They want to train their own people first, so good luck. My husband and I live off post in Mililani Mauka, and its very nice here, its quiet and close to the base.

  8. I totally agree…you run out of things to do. And I have a 1 yr old…so by the time we get anywhere because of the horrible traffic he’s hot and crabby. I feel guilty complaining about living in Hawaii but it’s true! Its such a deal to want to see my family back in MN. Long trip, expensive, and the thought of the return flight is a nightmare! Thanks for the post…I know I’m not alone!

  9. I agree with everything you have said. I HATE it here so much and I wanna go back to the mainland sooo bad! I was really excited when I found out we were coming here and when I stepped off the plane I was like “this is Hawaii??” Its not all its cracked up to be. Then we got housing…I stay on AMR and not in new housing. Im 5 months pregnant with a 2yr old. I have no a/c or carpet and I swear if I see another huge bug or gecko in my house one more time Im going to scream. Good news it that we are moving into navy housing in 3 weeks so I wont have to bring my newborn into this dump the army calls a home. My mom will also be here in December and I told her not to be disappointed when she sees this island cause its not all that! I love your website Armywife101 and keep up the good work. I cant wait to read part 2 of the blog!!!!

  10. I am one of the ones who loves it here. We are leaving in about 20 days and I am very saddened by this. I would stay here forever if the Army would let us. We have an 18-year-old, 10-year-old and 7-year-old. The 18-year-old graduated from high school here and she loved it. She is actually staying here for college and is already started. The two boys love the bugs and geckos and the fact that there are NO snakes!! I did take them out of the school on base because it was overcrowded and no one seemed to care too much about the kids. They are in a local pubic school on the North Shore and they are both thriving there. They get alot more then just trying to make the numbers! When my husband came back from Iraq we went on the all island cruise which was right at $1000 for all of us and took in the other islands. Then we decided that we liked Kaui best and went back but we did get the bargain tickets with GO! when they went on sale. We are adventure people and we hike and bike and beach all the time. We bought the year rooud tickets for Wet N Wild which was right at the same price as if you went once or twice. We went about 40 times during the year and brought our own lunch to eat at a picnic area. We also got year passes to the Polynesian Cultural Center and the kids love to go and just walk around. Then when family comes you can take them and not have to pay for yourself.
    All this being said, neither my husband nor I have families back home except for my mom and his sister so we are not missing a huge family back home. And we are older which helps. I do find that younger people tend to have a harder time or those that have huge close families. We hope to be back again one day!

    • Thank you! So much whining I was beginning to wonder if I should be dreading our move to Hawaii in January or be excited! Right now I am excited! We are a busy outdoor family too. I also home school so I am not worried about the education they receive. We don’t usually sit around. We are always busy with a project at home, getting together with friends or going on an adventure:) Even if that adventure is a picnic at the park!
      My only concern is people complain about every post. I have been at Fort Stewart for 6 years now and so many hate it here too. I have also heard so many people complain about every other post too. Oh, you don’t want to go here or there because of this or that. Well, we have loved it wherever we have lived because we just love being together and meeting new people. We are not so young but we have 4 kids that have adjusted fantastic-ly to all our moves. Sure we hate leaving old friends but we always think about the new ones we will be making and adjust accordingly. I think kids deal with change based on how their parents do.
      Well there’s my 2 cents, and I’m sure I will get yelled at for it but I’m not saying it to offend but more to say Life in general is what you make it. I heard a professor in college say if you think about something long enough it will happen. I think it goes with this too in the way if we complain long enough we will hate it! Trust me I have had many battles in my life but even after all of them I still absolutely love the life I have been given and the people I have been blessed with:)
      Love to you all, fellow Army wives;)

  11. Great Post! You are absolutely right, Hawaii is a gorgeous island to visit, but not the place to live. We’ve been here for over a year and I’m so ready to leave this place. When I arrived I was told not to go off base because the locals are not as friendly, I thought, really, in beautiful Hawaii. Of course, I didn’t listen. I’d always take a morning jog at one of the most beautiful parks in Oahu located in Miliani without any problems. Well, one morning (one week after my hubby deployed) I decided to take a jog and when I returned to my car I saw diamonds, some thieves had broken into my car and stole my purse including checkbooks, credit cards, license, military id cards, etc. I was devastated, pissed, scared and could not stop crying. Of all times, why now, after my husband deployed. Now I jog on base and I feel so trapped. To me Hawaii just seems like a different country, so far away from home, with street names I can’t even pronounce. I had the hardest time giving the Honolulu police officer directions to the park. Traffic is horrific and a short drive can take forever if you time it wrong. I agree, Wahiawa is definitely a thumbs down and Waipahu is no better. Some of the surrounding cities are like slums. The bugs are definitely a nuisance so you have to be extra clean! Again, Great Post!

    • I am so glad I found this website and got to read alot of comments that I couldn’t agree anymore about this nasty place and the worst place we have ever been to. I have never been so stressed being here with low mentality people here. People are so raists here and 3rd world country, not PART of the United States AT ALL. They will never fit in any other 49 United States!. As long as we get to get out of here and go back to States, I will be thrilled!!!!! I can’t wait to get OUT OF HERE!. I have met so many Americans were shocked by everything once they got here. We are all fooled by the word “paradise” which is a Joke! There is nothing paradise about this place. All the people I have met so far, they can’t wait to go back to the States!
      Military should do a better job to protect our troops being here! since they are so raists againts military family member get harrass from these people.

      • I understand where you’re coming from Kim. You’re saying the locals are third world and low mentality, but yet your ass can’t even spell “racist” right and the rest of your grammar is atrocious. It’s like I’m listening to a local speak. The irony.

  12. Well, I guess I am thankful for this post. I know in the back of my head, that being stationed on HI is not like being on vacation there. But I do have to say…OUCH!!…you busted my bubble. But no hard feelings, since I think I did get carried away with the thought of going to “paradise”. Living and vacationing there are likely to be worlds apart. As for “loving” or “hating” it…..I will just wait and see what comes my way. Being an army wife for 10 years has taught me to just roll with the punches and work with what you have. So….bring it on Hawaii…lets see what you got ;) C U in 90 days!

  13. We just PCSed from Hawaii to Colorado. While I miss many things about the island, it is nice to be back in the land of choices and options! When we lived there, my favorite comment I heard ad naseum was, “You live in Hawaii? Must be rough!” Ya…cuz I was just chillin’ at the Hilton with a mai tai all the time! HA!

    Do you know when you will be moving again? May God bless you as you faithfully serve your country. You are a beautiful example of a military spouse!

  14. Whatever you do – don’t get yourselves sent to Guantanamo Bay if you hate Hawaii – GTMO is beaches, and military – 25 miles an hour – and only about 50 miles of road – one day and you’ve seen it all.
    They also have cockroaches bigger than a 2 year old and blue crabs that climb trees, cuban pythons that can carry off a very fat labrador retreiver and banana rats that look like Ewoks that chew down the trees in your yard. When they set up the prison there, we realized then that we had not been sent to paradise.

  15. I was only there for 9 months, but loved it. We drove around and I constantly thought, “I can’t believe I live someplace this beautiful.” I loved the mountains, learned to scuba dive, and enjoyed hiking throughout the island. We found some great restaurants (Albero’s, Anna Millers, and a wonderful NY style deli where I could get a fabulous hot pastrami on rye and Dr. Brown’s black cherry – oh how I wish I could get that where I am now). I was able to get a great part-time job (with medical benefits) teaching computer classes at the Pearlridge Mall. I don’t remember being treated any less for being from the mainland either. For me, the worst part was a lack of friends. Since I was not a spouse or even a fiancée at the time, I didn’t have coffees, frgs, or any access to the post to meet people easily. And without a car, I had a hard time getting places to joins clubs or organizations. Overall, I had a great time in Hawaii and it is certainly a place that family and friends are more than happy to come and visit you at.

  16. We were in Alaska for three years before getting stationed in Okinawa. Hawaii and any other island is now at the very bottom of my list of places to go! These places are nice to visit, but unless you want to get fully committed to the island (or Alaskan!) way of life things get old real quick.

  17. We’re currently stationed in Hawaii and we are one of the ones who love it. So much so, we asked for orders to come back so this is our second tour. I completely agree with the issues you pointed out — run out of activities, “island fever”, etc., but I don’t think it’s much different from other bases on the mainland where some of the bases are located near some pretty less-than-favorable areas as well. I mean I’m originally from Ft. Bragg so Hawaii IS paradise compared to that and we have to been to Twentynine Palms and Camp Lejeune and I would NEVER return to those places. I think what helps in finding new activities is to make friends with Hawaii residents who are completely separate from military life. Through my job here, most of my friends I have here are actually local and not made through military connections. Not to mention I am half Asian so while I do “fit” into the look of Hawaii’s locals, I can empathize with the racism experience since I’ve encountered and experienced various forms of racism and discrimination while living on the mainland. But you are in Schofield – the “countryside” to say the least and we’re at Kaneohe Bay and a stone’s throw from Honolulu, just over the Pali. {And ugh the bugs are DISGUSTING! I stayed in Mililani for awhile and came across the centipedes, the cane spider and the roaches…ACK! I do suggest having a cat if you don’t already have one. My cat now takes care of the bug issues}

  18. oh and i totally agree with you and I have only been in Hawaii for 2 months. We came from being stationed in Alaska and the locals here compared to the locals there are really not nice. In Alaska reguarlly we would be out in the town and greeted nicely and my husband was thanked for his service, here we feel the evil eye anytime we have to go out and he is in uniform.
    I have not had 1 good experince here. Im hoping that when we get in out eity bity tiny house on post
    that hopefully our neigh bors will be nice because I havent found any Aloha here at all.
    I hope it gets better..=)


  20. This is an awesome post! My husband is hellbent on getting to Hawaii….I’m the more reasonable one saying “what if….?” and he’s only thinking of the vacation aspect of it….Don’t get me wrong. I love the beach. But I also want to be able to get to my homestate without clearing the retirement fund.

  21. I am so happy to see that I am not alone,on hating Hawaii. My husband is in the Navy and we are stationed here for about two more years, I seriously hope it goes by soon. I have never felt so trapped in my life!! When we arrived last December of 09′ I thought to myself “oh wow, Hawaii”. Now I am screaming get me OUT OF HERE!!!!

    They call this the melting pot?!?! I don’t think so. I was born and raised in New York City and I am not trying to be rude, but I believe that’s the true melting pot. Locals are only nice to their kind….. I see a lot of discrimination against caucasians or military families. Moving along the food is alright,tired of the same ole’ white rice with mac salad on the side. The bug problems are driving me up the wall!!!!!! No matter how clean my house is I will always find a centipede,roach,or spiders. And a few gecko…. yessss NASTY GECKO’S!! And NO they are not good luck, I want that Dang lizard out of my house. I get so crazy and stressed with these issues. And to make matters worse I don’t know anyone here at all…… sucks! Mind you my husband was born here and was raised on the mainland. But he has family on this island whom I rather not even bother with,because they don’t really keep in touch unless it’s a special occasion like a holiday or luau.

    So besides it being boring here for me, I know no one. I just keep telling myself two more years…..

    And my husband wanted to buy a house here I shut that idea down real quick with a NO. I refuse to stay in Hawaii.

  22. Hawaii is WONDERFUL for the first year. Then ‘cabin fever, or er.. island fever’ sets in. Once winter hits there is NOTHING to do. And you can’t escape anywhere by car to go and be adventurous. Flying home runs us thousands and we can’t just leave our animals here for long periods of time. Hawaiians don’t want us here and tell us, or well me, often. You see it on their bumper stickers everyday. After 2 years… get me off this island, I don’t know how i’ll survive another 2 years.

  23. I really agree with you! I loved it here when we first arrived… it’s been 4 months since we’ve been here. I want to go back to the mainland already! LOL I tell my husband all the time, I want to PCS out of here when he gets back from his deployment. I guess we just have to try and make the best of it! But thanks for all the 411… I love your blogs!

  24. We’ve been here 3 1/2 years and my husband just extended… I have mixed feelings about being here – Bellows and camping are awesome… Mililani Town Center, Phuket Thai, my job… but I feel that many times there is a juxtaposition of military and local culture that is startling to both… The life we lead here is one of “hooah” and self reliance – a direct contrast to the quiet communal culture that many locals have here on island… I’ve also gotten stink eye from Native Hawaiians, although not to the extent that Ive heard others get… some acquaintances have actually had to pull their teens out of the schools bc of bullying. It’s still more subtle than many places on the mainland…I have island fever and have entertained fears of what would happen if there was a natural disaster… better to be here on on the mainland? I do feel trapped but am stuck for now.

  25. My partner is from here and I am not and that’s how I ended up in this third world nation called Hawai’i.

    First off, oh where oh where do I start? Rude people, yes I’ll start with that- I’ve never seen such rude ignorant people in all of my life as I have here. No respect for anything or anyone out where I am at. Also, The substance abuse problem on this island is wildly out of control! Drinking and fighting in the streets is a normal occurrence in my neighborhood. Nightly drinking binges complete with blasting loud music and not caring about anyone else around them but themselves is the top order of the day!

    The insects and other crawly critters here are the least my problems but the people? man oh man…they’re a trip and a half!

    Sorry to be so negative but I’ve lived here for 8 years now and as you can see it has taken it’s toll. Great article! keep em coming!

  26. Question regarding getting stationed in hawaii. Is fort stewart, ga better than living over there? We not sure what to do because I have never got on an airplane and plus I would have to fly by myself, and if I do have to get on a plane I plane on being drunk as hell or I better have a parachute stuck to my back. I hate heights.

  27. WOW, I’m sorry I’ve been here for a while too. You sound like a spoiled bitch! This is the most beautiful place I’ve ever been, maybe you would like Fort Polk better, or Fayettville NC- talk about a shit hole, or maybe they should dump you and your complaining butt off in Watertown NY!! That would shut you up in a second. Get your lazy butt outside and enjoy the most beautiful weather God put on this earth. Basically SHUT UP!

    • @Angela. She is honest and is open about her opinions and I applaud her. In fact, your entire blog, Army Wife 101, is fabulous and so incredibly informational for people like myself looking for “real” views on their duty stations. Even though she may not like the area she offers incredible insight on her reasons which allows me to weigh my options. On another note, I have been to Fayettville, Leesville, Sierra Vista, Hinesville and Pyeongtaek and have so many wonderful things to say about all those cities so maybe, you should just “basically, SHUT UP!”. With all do respect, of course.

    • Amen sister! I agree with you- get outside go to the beach- be active and live! Enjoy the beauty, and stop bitching!

  28. @Angela, it’s considered poor blogger etiquette to tell someone else to “shut up” on their own blog, no?! I too, appreciate the honesty in this well written post. I’ve been looking all night for the good, the bad, and the ugly on Hawaii. Perhaps you should post a blog about why you love your island as much as you do, offer another opinion into the conversation instead of trashing the author for writing her opinion, on her own blog no less.

  29. Thanks so much for approaching this topic ArmyWife101, because it’s about time someone laid it on the line! My husband and I are currently stationed in the Pearl Harbor area, and it has been an interesting journey to say the least. While our goal isn’t a never-ending rant, some things simply need to be told. And part of the reason people are afraid to do so is the fear of being called names i.e., “spoiled” & “b!tch” whhen sharing their personal experiences.

    Although I enjoy what Hawaii has to offer culturally, certain elements leave a lot to be desired.

    1. TRUE: The standard of education is poor, and is reflected by the behavior of children and adults alike.

    2. TRUE: Military families are often treated like dirt from Locals who often benefit from our dollars.

    3. TRUE: The housing & other commodities are often substandard. IMO, Locals overuse the “Well this is Hawaii…” excuse when called on mediocre products and services….

    I may have more later, but great discussion!

    • Read these comments about the truth about this place from this website!


      I first visited Hawaii, I was roobbed at gunpoint by Hawaiian natives. They took everything. I reported it to the police, two Hawaians looking guys told me it was my fault. And” they really hate White Americans”.

      They basically laughed at me. I had to use western union to get help from family.

      I am know sending out several emails around America letting them not to go to Hawaii, and to patronize other countries.

      They are also getting the message , within the next few years, Hawaiis economy will be shafted because Americans will not go there.

      Comment by Jim — July 30, 2009 @ 6:19 pm

  30. I am living in Hawaii, It’s gorgeous here..People say “oh it’s an island, no where to go” Yes, that’s true, but most people on the mainland never go anywhere anyways. Some schools suck, but there are a lot of them that are great. No allergies, perfect weather, slow drivers, easy lifestyle..Those are just a few of the reasons why I love this place..If you hate it so much, get out of the military and live in the city..where your car will probably get stolen, have allergies, asthmatic kids suffer more in cities, and be stressed out everyday and you’ll have to worry ablut people running you off the roads and flipping you off! HA!

  31. Oh dear God, I’d love to experience the boredom of Hawaii after I have seen all the attractions :) Your post gives me hope that DH will be stationed there because not everyone will have Hawaii on the top of their list.

  32. Seriously woman? You live up in Schofield and you’re worried about a tsunami? Be truthful and tell the people that you live almost 9 miles from the nearest coast and are 1/2-way up the mountain peaks. O brother, drama.

    • Ummm the island is small and because I am not from there I don’t give a crap about being 9 miles from the water. If it wasn’t a big deal then half the base wouldn’t have been scared to death with me. Tell that to all the people in Japan who were affected that didn’t live exactly on the water. Thanks for stopping by though lol!

      • At almost 1,000 feet above sea level you’re also at an elevation that would NEVER be threatened by a tsunami.

      • I was at Schofield during that, and we just filled the tubs with water and went to the commissary for some extra batteries(yes, the line was insane). However, due to Schofield’s location, we knew we weren’t in some sort of imminent danger. If “half of Schofield” was scared to death, it was the stupid half. Take from that what you will.

  33. My husband just got orders there, honestly I have not been very excited form the get-go. Can any one tell about colleges over there? I am currently in college to get my ASN and I have been looking for schools but I do not see any that have my major. That is what worries the most is not getting into a good college when I get there. This is my first time moving with the army I have not been in the army wife world long at. I know I have a lot to learn. This move will stress me out. If anyone can tell me good colleges it would be very apperciated.

    • Chaminade University of Honolulu, The University of Hawaii, and Hawaii Pacific University ALL have nursing programs (associates AND bachelor’s programs). HPU and Chaminade work directly with the military and their families by providing accelerated on base classes.

  34. Hello Im looking for some advice I guess
    my husband and I will be station in Schofield Barracks starting in april and we are only taking my car, since he is Intelligence he cannot have his phone with him so due to early let outs or anything that may cause him to get out early he refused to let me drive him there every day and pick him up
    If we are gonna live in waipahu would I be able to take a bus to the places i may need to go or would getting a second source of transportation be in our better interest

    • Honestly I don’t know anything about living outside of post. If I were you I probably would try to live alittle closer like maybe in Mililani. I do know there is lot’s of bus service though.

    • Royal Kunia (part of Waipahu) is a great place to live and very close to Schofield without the high cost of Mililani rent. Hawaii has one of the top rated public transportation systems in the country (last I checked we were 10th in the country). The Bus charges $2.50 per route (there is even a circle Oahu route!), so if you plan to use it a lot you should get the monthly pass. I’ve never heard any friends complain about using The Bus. You’ll also see a LOT of people walking, on bikes, running, etc. Because of the beach culture, you might also be able to find an older car or moped you could use to get from point A to point B on Craigslist.
      Royal Kunia has a grocery store, dining, and a walmart. It is also really close (5 min. drive?) to our only outlet mall – Waikele Shopping Center and about a 15 min drive to Kapolei (the second city). Kapolei has tons of places to eat, shopping, groceries, wal-mart, Costco, Target, etc.
      I honestly believe you get what you put into it. If you come here and expect to be bored, you will be. If you come here and want to be active there are TONS of things you can do from Ice Skating at Ice Palace, to Wet-N-Wild, hiking, surfing (even if you don’t surf you just MUST watch a surf competition), swimming in water falls, shopping, and the parks and pools on base are great too. There are huge Chinese New Year celebrations every February. Easter brings tons of egg hunts (most are free). The 4th of July Spectacular at Schofield is so much fun with live music, games and rides for the kids, a craft show. You’ll find pumpkin patches and haunted houses (including a haunted plantation village that’s for ages 8 and up) around Halloween. All of the holidays have amazing celebrations. I never experienced holidays on the mainland like I do here. Honestly, my husband and I are having a hard time scheduling everything we want to do and we aren’t moving ANY time soon. LOL

  35. So we will be heading that way in September. Loved the “reality check” of your posts. I’m sure we will be the in-between type people. My husband grew up in Puerto Rico, and I spent 9 months there… so well prepared for some the horrors of “island life”.

  36. Hi, Glad I found this website. My hunny was sent to Hilo on the big island in October on a 3 year order. I apologize ladies, I am not up on the Army lingo. I was finally able to get a job here and I came over in January.

    Honestly, this has been the worst experience of my life. I met my hunny in Houston while he was stationed there, and was a wonderful romance. Until I got here.

    I hate the weather. I hate my job. I hate the “unsaid racism”.

    I am 42 years old, been single majority of my adult life, two grown children and well adjusted and one a college grad, and the other still in college. I have worked hard on my career and been doing it for 22 yrs. I worked my way from an associate degree to a couple of BS ‘s. I have always felt that well, this life can take everything from you but your knowledge.

    When I was told by my employer who I shall remain nameless that ” Yes, discrimination does exist, you just need to get over it ” and the straw that broke the camels back ” You need to learn how to be more humble ”

    Wow, oh wow. You can’t get more humble than where I started from. Heck the house I was born in, didn’t even have running water or a bathroon. So, um. I know humble. Humble was taught and served in pie growing up.

    I am a proud independent woman with a career, I will not change that for no one.

    I am a believer in respect, honesty and integrity. Pretty much, just telling it like it is, and calling things as I see them.

    My plane ticket is booked back to the United States of America…(please note my sarcasm) My former employers were thrilled I was coming back, Heck several hospitals I have worked at, were thrilled to hear I was coming back.

    This place is a different world. Getting the Hawaiian frame of mind, was not a bother, it was how I was treated, made to feel isolated, and not respected. I could care less if anyone likes me or doesn’t, but I guess I grew up a little to Southern Baptist, Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. I don’t believe they know that phrase here on the big island.

    I finally found the support of a recruiters wife, who I am sure her and I would have become the bestest of buds. This place just isn’t for me.

    As for my hunny. I feel like I am deserting him, and maybe I am. I have been sick since I got here. This whole catchment water thing………EEEEKKKK. I thought I left those sorts of things when I left Tenn.

    He has been totally supportive of me going back, he knows I will either get strung out on something here, or become a alcoholic. (some sarcasm, maybe) if I stay here.

    I salute you Army wives, you all deserve a medal for honor and courage.

    I am not as strong as the rest of you.

    Just gonna say watch out for catchment water and vog.

    Adios, and best wishes to you gals.

  37. I LOVED living in Hawaii! I lived there from December 08′ to July of 11′ and I
    Loved that everything was close, always found fun things to do (and did go to pearl more
    than once), never had an issue with the locals and don’t see a difference between
    a tsunami warning and the earthquakes in Cali or tornadoes in NC (which terrify
    me and I am from there!).

    I won’t disagree with you on the schools though, we supplemented their education.
    All in all I think Hawaii is like any other duty station, it is what you make of it!
    Personally I would be quite happy to make Hawaii my home! So I’m afraid I must
    Respectfully disagree with your article on living there!

  38. I think that your over reacting because I live in Maui, Lahaina, its much smaller of a city than Oahu, and I am perfectly content here. I enjoy paddling with my canoe club four days a week which gives me something really fun to do and something competitive to do in my spare time. I also like going to the beach or mall with my friends and going out to lunch with them as well.

    Another thing I can tell you is that if you spend as much time looking for something to do as you did writing this article, you could probably come up with a million different things to do. All of the kids in my class love taking the ferry to Oahu on the weekends and coming back in time for the first day of the week. We have the funnest time there. Just saying.

    I am in the 6th (going in 7th) grade and I learn more than some of my friends do that live on the mainland. That might be because i’m in honners classes which means I learn a grade or two above my actual grade level. I go to a public school. I love my school and all of my teachers, have options to take two classes of my choice along with 6 other classes that I have to take. These include Math, Science, Social Studies, English, Health, and P.E. My two extra classes are Work/Woodshop and Piano Classes.

    I completely disagree with your article and I hope that you learn to love it there. I guess…

    • “honners classes”

      My God…I hope you’re not doing ‘honners’ in English!

      (ps. It’s bloody well spelled ‘honours’ (British English) or ‘honors’ (American English! ugh!)

  39. Hi,

    I read your post. I can’t believe the tiny, insignificant things you’re whingeing about. My God Americans must be the most coddled and wimpy people on earth. You get housing provided, EVERYTHING provided from the military and you’re still complaining???

    Come over to Kalakaua Avenue where I live and cram into a tiny apartment because there’s no work for a haole with 3 college degrees and who just had his 516th job rejection in 3 years of being in this shit-hole called Honolulu. I get spat at in the streets by locals, have been hospitalized in intensive care after being mugged by druggies and generally live in a real ghetto here. You have EVERYTHING provided for you….quit complaining and do your nails.

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