Received a great email from an aunt; you know, the one who is younger than me! Casey married my wife's uncle and is an awesome lady. We had a blast at a cousin's wedding recepton awhile back, when Casey dared me to run the several hundred steps from the Seattle waterfront to Pike Place Market. Fun to do at 0600 in February while trying to dispose of a wedding reception hangover.
That run was surreal. Foggy, cool, misty. I'm running near the ferry docks when I hear a rumble-like growl coming out of the mist and getting louder. Alligator? Got a bit tense before I realized it was a man sleeping on a park bench and snoring loudly.
Casey mentioned a vacation they took to Maui. After reading my account, she shared hers. Narrative follows:
Hana: Crazy drive. Cool that you came back the other side. You know Doug, he had that rental contract memorized and no chances were to be taken. So we came back the way we went in. We actually swam in those 7 pools, which I later found out had pig waste runoff from the fields above the waterfalls. Uh, not so nice. I prefer not to think too much about it. I console myself with the fact that I'm still alive 20 years later and hopefully nothing really got stuck in me. Gag.
Haleakala (the 10,000 foot volcano/tourist trap): You are a nut!!!! I enjoy being able to say we're related, though, when I talk about your exercise regimes. :-) I am willing to live vicariously through your lunacy. Ok, so picture this: Maxx (oldest son) broke his leg just before the trip, so among many plans for that trip, our plan for all 4 of us to go to Haleakala was over. It was just me and Sam (youngest) that morning, Doug had no interest really in doing it a 2nd time (we did it on our honeymoon, the whole ride the bikes down the hill thing).
Sam and I arrived at the tour company, and realized we had forgotten our warm clothing! It was all safe and sound, folded up back at the condo, and the company we were riding up with didn't have anything warm. So Sam and I went up in just regular shirts. Then, it was completely 100% overcast. So we waited for FOREVER, in the MOST BORING PLACE, to see LIT FOG. (those were Sam's words.) I kept telling him it would get better, but it really didn't.
Next came the bike ride down. Because of course Doug and I had such a great time 20 years ago, we wanted to share that with the kids. It's a few hours leisurely bike ride down, a breakfast stop at a little restaurant on the way, and then lunch in ... Paia? (That fish house on the corner of that main street was delicious! We ate there with the boys another day.) We got on the bikes, mine wasn't too comfortable, but Sam was already pedaling ahead and I couldn't get his attention. The company planned a pit stop ahead for everyone to double check their bikes and get a group photo so I figured I'd work it out there. Ummm, that was pretty much the last time I saw Sam until we got to the bottom.
I am not kidding~ Every turn I expected to see him splayed over the guard rails, but he was never in sight. Not once. Luckily he is my son, and we BOTH took the SAME wrong turn. Just as I was about to turn around after realizing I'd gone the wrong way (talk about silently freaking out! lol), I heard, "Mom!" Oh my god, I was never more glad to see someone - not only because I was so glad he was safe, but because I had no idea where in the hell we were! I was still riding that awkward bike, it was so painful and wobbly. I laugh a little hysterically still every time I think about it.) Thankfully someone in a van stopped and gave us a ride. (It was no time to care about killers and kidnappers, these were desperate hours man, 8 a.m., in Maui, on a bike, the stuff nightmares are made of!)
I think it was a guy who used to work at the bike shop, and I think he said something about knowing when he saw people on bikes on that road that they'd gotten lost. He drove us back to the road we needed and dropped us off to finish the route. I was wishing he'd just take us all the way. After all that, we STILL were the first back, back in Paia at EIGHT THIRTY AM, and I swear I had never been so scared and exhausted (and just a tad irritated ;-)) in all my life. Nothing was open yet to eat, so we just drove back to the condo (an hour drive or so I think). God, what a trip. I think they called us Mashers, people who ride straight down without stopping. No pictures, no time together looking at the view, no chit-chat, nothing. Sheer terror. In hindsight, I am so thankful Maxx couldn't go. I think it would have been way worse. Sam thought the ride totally made up for the sunrise! Of course he did.
Me again: Don't you feel bad for the schmucks who go on vacation and absolutely nothing goes wrong? How boring is that? Incidentally, all names have been unchanged in order to indict the guilty. And I put this posting into the "Stoopidity" category merely to reflect the stoopid things that happen.