At last the gauntlet of death eased its campaign and I got to enjoy some real vacation time, with varying degrees of success. Here is a smattering of highlights from our trip to Hawaii:
Trying to Not Get Kicked Off the Plane
Our flight was delayed an hour, so we parked ourselves in a restaurant table closest to the airport terminal for best people watching potential (I swear we saw a pair of professional “bearders” pass by). The boyfriend enjoyed some adult beverages under the auspices of “it’s vacation!” but really more because he is only slightly less afraid of flying than I am. I wasn’t able partake myself because of my sinus issues, unfortunately. When we got the news our flight was delayed another hour, he ordered a Bloody Mary. He let the server know that this, his third beverage, was really, really good, and she replied, “Yes, we make all our drinks as doubles!” Mierda.
The boyfriend was slightly woozly when we made our way to the gate. The check-in attendant asked for his last name. He stared back blankly then looked at his boarding pass: “Panza!” he declared.
The check-in attendant’s brow furrowed. I swear if my boyfriend had been any shade darker than milky white the TSA would have swept in to investigate us.
A funny aside to this story is the difference in our moods when we arrived at our destination. I was nearly euphoric, as I typically am after stepping off a plane, because I was on firm ground and hadn’t gone down in a ball of flames into the Pacific. My boyfriend was grumbling as we rolled our baggage through a nearly pitch-black parking lot looking for our rental car. I asked why he was so grumpy and he confessed: “I think I’m hungover.” It was 7 pm.
The Perfect View
I had managed, booking on short notice, to get an ocean-front condo, in a small complex during high season (whale season) in Maui, for less than the nightly rate of a hotel in downtown San Francisco. The hyper-colored blue strip of water, made dramatic with the islands of Molokai and Lanai in the background, was like an IV of Prozac every day.
An unexpected bonus was the daily life we saw out on the water. First, the whales: Between 5,000 and 10,000 whales are in the area for the season, and we were able to watch several groups popping up every morning while we were enjoying coffee on the patio. Second, there was a reef break just outside the condo, where about 5-15 surfers and paddle boarders were at any given time. One afternoon, the two worlds of human and Humpback collided, when a group of whales buzzed by right next to the reef break.
Sea turtles also came up to the rocks next to the condo to feed, appearing, from my overhead view, like a group of green Pac-Man’s shuttling around ungracefully from rock to rock in the turquoise surf. When we were at a nearby beach we found one lonely turtle basking in the sun, eyes closed and oblivious to people like me who stopped to get a photo.
A Case of Restlessness
I should have beached myself like the pale mainlander I am and enjoyed the sun and critters, but alas, I have a twitchy spirit and must assess my surroundings fully before I can settle down; Kind of like a cat that spins around about 20 times before they find their perfect sleep spot. Some of the sunniest, best weather days we spent driving around, checking out parks, shops and beach access points. Right when we had the lay of the land and were ready for a solidly beachy couple of days, the “Vog” moved in (volcanic smog), the weather cooled down, and the surf got rough.
Not that I’m complaining, but I feel like I have some unfinished business in Maui! The kind that involves sitting and doing nothing.
I’ll have to split this up into a two-parter. Next will be upcountry and our Hana adventure. For now, more pictures!