Our timing couldn’t have been better—we got out of Dodge the day before the big snowstorm hit. Both Karen and I had downloaded movies to watch and as a Christmas surprise I gave her/us upgraded Comfort Seating, so the flights were easy. By the time we landed, got a rental car, drove around the island to the condo it was 11:30 pm (3:30 am MN time). Strangely, we both slept well—avoiding jet lag for the first time ever.

Our traditional first day breakfast (for me: mahi eggs benedict with passion fruit-orange-guava—POG—juice) is at the Pioneer Inn, Lahaina harbor. Karen did some gift shopping and found some very cool sandals for herself. Then (busy day!) had to do $350 worth of grocery shopping and make a stop at the Maui Coffee Company.

Our first day lunch tradition (we obviously have a lot of traditions) is at Aloha Mixed Plate with my favorite dish: shoyu chicken, mahi and teriyaki beef, aptly called the “Aloha Mixed Plate.” The manager was very chatty about a wide range of topics including the ins and outs of pruning plumeria trees—the sap is poisonous—and the recent decision to stop the sugar cane farming on the island. I knew that it was becoming more controversial because the fields have to be burned to harvest the sugar cane and the smoke from this process is stinky, messy and unhealthy for many people. She told us she hoped the water rights could be used to grow more local fruits and vegetables.

That evening, sitting on our lanai waiting for sunset and my (traditional) conch shell blowing, brother Richard skyped us, (with a minute or two to go before the official sunset time) so he could join us for sunset. Very fun surprise.

Day 2 (February 3) got in our first morning walk, photographed some flowers, and just so appreciated the sunshine and color.

Where are the whales? We’ve only seen far off breaches ….

Karen wanted to hit the bookstore, so I tagged along. I got a kick out of seeing four books on cooking with Spam—I bet even Austin, MN doesn’t have as many. I picked up a book on local legend and hero, Eddie Aikau. (Kris or Auntie Jane, you can have it next.)

We’ve introduced ourselves to the new property managers, Brian and Bev. Very friendly and hard workers! I took a photo of Brian painting the sidewalk and fixing a sprinkler head.

Beauty surrounds us. The ocean or mountains are a backdrop, even at a shopping center. Today Molokai was as clear as I have ever seen it.

Oh! Look at the time! I need to put on my Aloha shirt for sunset and toast my sweetheart with a gin and tonic.



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