Wednesday, September 9, 2009

WE WON! WE WON! (Concluded)

In those days there were no direct flights from the mainland to Maui, our first destination. And of course when we landed in Oahu we had long since missed our connecting flight. We checked with the inter-island carrier and learned that there was only one more flight to Maui that day, and there was only one seat available. I suggested that Amalie take it, and I would catch up when I could. And we wondered where our luggage was. We had to wait around quite a while for that last flight, and at the last minute they squeezed me in. By the time we landed at the Maui airport, it was dark, and the airport itself was dark. We had no idea where our bags might be, but as we rounded the corner of the tiny building, there were our two pieces of luggage patiently waiting for us.

Maui is shaped somewhat like a figure 8, with mountains in the center of the 0’s, and its airport is located in the center of the 8. We had ordered a rental car, and when we picked it up, discovered it was one of the Japanese makes. Okay. Our Sheraton Hotel was at the Lahaina side of the island, and we were going to have to drive around along the coast to get there. We hoped we could find it. Well, there was only one main road, so I followed that. It was pitch black out, and I hunted in vain for the high beams on the headlights. We finally arrived at our hotel, rather late for dinner, but we were treated most kindly. We were served dinner, and watched the remainder of the Hawaiian version of Christmas holiday entertainment. The next day one of the hotel personnel showed me where to find the high beam switch.

On Maui we rented a plane ride that took us up and around the island, and right into Haliakala Crater, where the astronauts had trained for their moonwalk. After exploring Maui, we flew to the Hilo side of the big island of Hawaii, explored there, and then, with a rental car, drove around to the Kona side for a couple of days. Our next stop was Kauai, and there we rented a helicopter ride around the island.

Their last stop was the Sheraton Pink Palace at Waikiki on Oahu. When I went to check out on the last day, the cashier asked rather suspiciously, “Who is this Mr. Thompson?” (The ad agency was picking up the tab.) Since J. Walter Thompson had an office in Honolulu, I suggested the cashier phone them. The clerk came back a short time later with a scowl on his face, and admitted that the ad agency was paying the bill. The flight home was uneventful -- thank Heaven! Until we landed at Oakland Airport -- not San Jose. Turned out not to be a problem. The flight attendant explained we had landed briefly at Oakland to let off a few passengers, and that during the seven minute flight from Oakland to San Jose, they would be serving an 8 course meal, and the in-flight movie would be Dostoievsky’s “War and Peace”.

Funny signs:

Must what?

hwo to do taht?


  1. Eight course meal. HAHAHAHA. Maui sounds wonderful. I'd love to see it one day (but not by helicopter.) I'll tell 'em "Mr. Thompson recommended it."

  2. I've actually done that Oakland to San Jose hop via a diverted flight, and the plane doesn't lift high enough for anyone to get out of their seatbelts.

    Eight course meal. You had me for about a nanosecond there. Heh.