A Creepy English Toad at Halekulani’s Orchids

english toad at halekulani's orchids

Before I tell you about the creepy English toad at Halekulani’s Orchids restaurant, I need to explain my photo. Also, I have no photos of Orchids. Nothing was really unusual enough to take a picture of except maybe that creepy English toad at Halekulani’s Orchids. So these are not oysters from Orchids. However, they are the most delectable oysters I have ever had in my life.

Look at how fat, juicy and huge they are!

The time has come, the Walrus said, to talk of many things. Of shoes and ships and sealing wax, cabbages and kings.

Hella and I ordered these oysters at Michel’s at the Colony Surf the night after we dined with the creepy English toad at Halekulani’s Orchids. Our waiter at Michel’s could only tell us they came from the state of Washington. So the name of these oysters remains a mystery. I suppose I could call Michel’s and ask what type of oysters they served on New Year’s Eve but that would involve picking up the phone.

On to creepy English toad at Halelulani’s Orchids on the night before New Year’s Eve. This was our first night in Waikiki. Hella and I really haven’t talked much over the past year so we were anxious to catch up on all of the important events in our lives. We’ve both enjoyed a fabulous 2018.

We shared jokes, stories. And we laughed and laughed. In retrospect, we both agree that we were not loud enough to be disturbing. However, I did not notice the creepy English toad at Halekulani’s Orchids right away because I was focused on Hella’s conversation; although, he sat with his back to us about 8 feet away. His dining companion, we later observed, looked like a domestic abuse victim.

She sat erect in her chair staring at their table, eyes downcast, knees together, clutching an upright purse in her lap. Not moving. Occasionally reaching for a glass of water. We wondered afterwards if she cut her hair herself or if the creepy toad did the honors. They seemed a strange couple. Was she a wife? A caretaker?

As we were nearing the end of our dinner and considering a dessert wine, I launched into my humorous and unbelievable tale about the remodeling project in process at our house in Kona. I had just reached the part about how Lowe’s did not deliver all of our cabinets, which delayed part of the install, and how Lowe’s also did not tell me our new cabinets had been discontinued. Which I discovered only by calling Shenandoah.

At that part of the conversation, the creepy toad at Halelulani’s Orchids spun around in his chair. He looked at Hella and then directly at me, rolling his fat arm over the back of his chair and leaning in, as though he had something confidential to say to us.

My first impression was he was about to commiserate. That perhaps he had done a remodel through Lowe’s as well. I mean what else could it be? I thought I heard him say the word Lowe’s. He spoke so softly it was hard to hear. Like he could be a child molester or some other type of pervert, Hella later pointed out, because that’s how they speak. Perhaps she’s thinking of Hannibal Lecter?

Due to his English accent and soft voice, it was difficult to understand him, but we were also in a state of shock when we realized what he had said. He began by saying we needed to pull our lives together. He called us out of control.

Who knew what a story about remodeling with Lowe’s could bring out in a stranger? I don’t recall what else he decided to share with us because we were both so stunned that he was still speaking in such an accusatory tone. We were speechless. He ended his brief tirade by suggesting we immediately seek the services of a psychiatrist. It was a really crazy and bizarre encounter.

I glanced at Hella and asked if she wanted a dessert or a dessert drink? She said we should go. She did not want to be near this ugly, creepy toad. Neither did I. He made our collective skins crawl.

What do you say when you’re accosted out of the blue? Well, we’ve thought of many things much later but at the moment it happened, all I felt for him was pity. Such a sad lonely creature. I stood up. I think Hella thought I was gonna punch him in the face, ha, ha. But instead I walked over to his table, slapped the table edge to get his attention and said, “I hope you both manage to have a Happy New Year’s.”

Turned on our heels and left.

Where were the waiters at Halekulani when their customers were being assaulted by a weirdo?

english toad at halekulani's orchids

This photo above was shot at House Without a Key at Halekulani on New Year’s Eve. After dinner at Michel’s, we enjoyed the Bill Maher show at the Blaisdell Center in Honolulu, and then we took off for the Daijingu Temple for a blessing from a Shinto priest. And to buy our golden frog amulets and a variety of other New Year’s treasures. By the time we made it back to Halekulani, it was fifteen minutes to midnight.

Hella sweet-talked her way into crashing the party underway at House Without a Key, and a waiter brought us each a glass of champagne to toast in the new year. We survived 2018 and New Year’s Eve in Honolulu. But we will probably for years still laugh about our odd encounter with the creepy English toad at Halekulani’s Orchids.

He meant to be mean. But why? Why are people so unhappy that they try to make themselves despicable to complete strangers? I do not have an answer to that.

Elizabeth Weintraub

Subscribe to Elizabeth Weintraub's Blog via email

Sorry we are experiencing system issues. Please try again.