Still, we live at the top of Mount Tantalus, which is above Honolulu, so it felt remote and seemed like we had a better chance of being faraway from any likely target zone — Pearl Harbor perhaps? Another military base?
As I looked through a big window in the living room, I could see most of Honolulu below. On the edge of the city is the lush Diamond Head, an extinct volcanic crater. Beneath that lies rows and rows of homes that seem to melt together. The suburban boxes feel like they would just fall into the sea, if not for the skyscrapers that dot Waikiki and downtown Honolulu and form a wall that stops the houses from flowing straight into the ocean.
It was the view I had looked at my whole life. But for a split second, I saw it all gone — just gray dust and rubble, like a photo I might have seen of a bombed-out city in World War II.
I saw the people I loved gone, as well as the city that had given me everything, opening its arms to me when I born at Kapiolani Hospital and shaping me into the person I am now.