Motivated by curiosity and his clothing line, James Astle, a BYUH alumnus from Los Angeles who is now a special instructor, walked from Laie to Honolulu spanning over 38.5 miles and 16 hours. James said, “The walk was something I always wanted to do, I just wanted to see the land in Oahu and see what it was like while walking. I thought it would be faster but it took longer than I expected. I've always wanted to walk to town because I wanted to see what it was like.”
One of Astle’s friends, Bryce Coleman, who is a junior from Arizona studying peacebuilding, joined him on the last quarter of the walk. Coleman said, “I thought it was a semi-stupid, but somewhat brilliant idea. I really like accomplishing feats that change your perspective on the world. I feel like walking across the island would change your perspective on lots of things like cars, shoes, and the island itself.”
Watching her husband embark on this adventure was nothing new, according to Princess Astle, a senior from the Philippines majoring in exercise and sports science. She said she thought her husband was insane with his idea.
Princess said, “At first, I thought it was crazy because it takes about 16 hours. I was never worried because James is such an adventurous person and he’s done crazier things before. If there was one thing I was worried about, it was the weather. It was so hot on that day, but I’m glad he did it.”
James said he wanted to use this experience to promote his clothing brand. He said, “Now, I make mostly shoes. I started my business in LA. I got into sewing and made a lot of stuff. I used to make a lot of T-shirts in high school, sell them, and make some money. I used to make stencils too. Then I came out to school here at BYUH.
“Jame is the brand (pronounced as Jaw-meh). Right now, I’m trying to get my products manufactured. I’m going through the process and just getting all that stuff organized. I’m going to the Philippines and China next month.”
A benefit from the walk, according to James, was finding new places along the trip. He said, “One of the coolest things about the walk were the spots I saw that I had never noticed while driving. And I was able to really feel and understand the land more just through walking.”
Astle said he also gained a greater appreciation for the things in life such as cars and bicycles. According to James, his legs were tired by the time he arrived at the Pali Highway. He said he jumped some fences and felt like giving up when it started to rain and get dark.
He continued and said, “I had to finish and I am grateful for the experience.”
The website for James’ business is Jamewear.com. Other than shoes, Jamewear also sells travel bags, camera bags. James said, “I make custom jeans or denim which used to be the core of it, but I switched to shoes.”
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