Hawaii – Day 3 – Sitting in the lap of luxury

 

My wife is pretty amazing, and when she puts her mind to it, she really delivers. Some of you already know how deep her pockets can go when she feels the need to deliver on something she knows you will appreciate, others of you have yet to experience it.

I say all of this to put emphasis on the rest of our vacation – from this point forward we celebrate 3 years of marriage.

We woke up a little later on Sunday. Our goal was to go to brunch buffet around 11 and then head on over to the airport in the afternoon, we lined up a shuttle to pick us up a couple hours prior and packed up our shit and were off.

The brunch was another beautiful aspect of the wedding I mentioned previously, so rest assured… there was plenty of food and an amazing view. We ate all we could muster and got off and on our way around noon.

We hiked up to The Kahala and sat down in their lounge to chill out before our shuttle. We sat around chit chatting, playing solitaire and watching the money fly around until our shuttle was due. We sat on the hotel round about and watched as once again – no shuttle arrived.

Thankfully we were stashed at a hotel about 4 miles further than the hotel we were staying at, and in the rich district – taxi cabs are everywhere.

I should let you know at this point that I took out $300 cash when we landed for miscellaneous and food related spending and I was down to my last 53 dollars, expecting that to last us a bit longer. The Jew in me was having a rough time with all the money flying out of my pockets like birds do my fruit trees.

The taxi got us off and up out, costing exactly 52 dollars to get to the Airport – keep the change dude… sheesh. 8 miles in 10 minutes, no wonder uber is taking over.

The second hiccup occurred just on the inside of the terminal. The wife got pre-checked by TSA, their fun little way of letting you know you have been randomly selected for not needing to remove your shoes during the screening. I passed through screening, dropped my drivers license into the bin, along with the rest of my shit i should have put into my bag, and through the back scatter I went.

On the other side I only grabbed my bullshit and left the license in the bin.

I know I’m an idiot.

We walked out into the terminal and decided to get some lunch before our flight, so we chose a local place called Stinger Ray’s. This is about as close to food as you can come, but first an aside.

Demographics

If someone were to ask you, as I am rhetorically, what is the size of the indigenous population of Hawaii – you would likely be of the opinion that it would be quite large. You would be incorrect. The truth is, Native Hawaiians make up about 6.6% of the population of Hawaii. They are so few and far between, and most of which have already adopted the role of tourist servant. Of the people aiding our vacation, nearly every single taxi driver was Hawaiian, the shuttle drivers were as well, and beyond them, the only other folks we met that were native Hawaiians were cleaning staff (at least up to this point, on Maui its a slightly different story).

Of note is the percentage of Latino’s that are on the islands – 7.2%.

With that in hind sight, our meal at Stingers was all the more revolting. The first thing I found on the menu was the burgers, and the first one is a cheeseburger made with Velveeta. Velveeta, for those that don’t know, is about as close to cheese as you can get from an oil slick – it is a tasteless, odorless ooze that has congealed, happens to be orange and is on the verge of melting into asphalt with a moments notice. Bleght!

I settled on a pulled pork sandwich and the wife ordered Nachos.

Our food came and although the sandwich i had was fine, the nachos made the wifey gag. They put Velveeta on their chips with a scoop of mushed up avocado for their guacamole.

Bleght.

Thankfully our meal didn’t last long and our plane started boarding. My hands went to my pockets, looking for my boarding pass, when I realized my ID was missing. I quickly traced my steps back to the TSA and explained to them what happened – thankfully they had my ID and we were off.

Where white folk stay

On approach to Maui I could tell that this was going to be a much more relaxing stay. Honolulu is nice, but it’s way too busy for my taste, more like San Francisco or New York. Maui is like landing in Redding, California. There is nothing but farmland in sight and a small outlet type city immediately adjacent to the airport – otherwise nothing. The weather was incredible – 94 in the shade with humidity, we were drenched. Out of the terminal and over to the rental area where we found out that we had to go elsewhere for our rental, but blah, blah, blah. found it and off we go.

We were staying in Wailea, at the Grand Wailea – a Waldorf Astoria Resort & Hotel, with rooms upwards of $350 a night, depending on your package of course, and suites that run $800+. For the record, i didn’t know people spent such money on their vacations, and thankfully we didn’t either. Our three night stay was discounted =D.

We checked in and the wife asked if we were in a suite and what the upgrade was, see above. Before even realizing it she had forgotten to ask if we were able to see the coast! awe, lame… The bell man took us up to our room and this is what we could see of the coast…

10635980_10152252940191507_7448441032164523309_nNote that to get that picture we had to crane the camera out to our railing, we were facing due south, with a chance for pain. I walked back over to our bell man and tipped him a nice crisp new $20 bill and he thanked me for being so gracious and was on his way.

I turned around with a smile on my face, to greet my dearest and her frown. she walked over started looking around the room and then came the knock on the door.

Would you two like to have your room upgraded? I dont typically do this, but there is a room down this way that is typically for disabled folk. If you don’t mind the larger doorways and different bathroom layout, it is a considerably better room.

Down the hall we go and into our destination – room 8076. 10350345_10152253067371507_1168886967170081162_n

Boom Upgraded – our view was almost exactly due west, and we could see the sunset even while laying in bed! $20 well spent!

Looking out of our door,  facing the southern volcano, and then out the sliding glass door down the beach front and then into the ocean… an odd dichotomy presented itself. There appear to be a line drawn in the proverbial sand between the haves and the have nots. Only a couple miles down the road things turn brown and houses look much more like what you and I would more accurately call huts, yet here its 800 dollars a night for a suite. It makes for a really shut in kind of experience.

Besides being a jumble of “H”s, “K”s and “U”s, Humuhumunukunukuapua’a is also a beachfront restaurant, connected to the Grand Wailea. It has seating directly over a bone fish pond and amazing food. The two of us got dinner, drinks and desert for $320 – Surf ‘n Turf + a White fish on couscous and a native fruit sorbet sampler.

Boy was my wallet unhappy with me.

It was so hungry.

We ate and crawled back up into bed, where we watched some news and passed the fuck out.