Road to Hana from Wailea

Elizabeth on a RockWe thought we had the Road to Hana tour from our home base in Wailea all planned out. I set my alarm on the clock radio at The Fairmont Kea. I called for a wakeup call at 5:45, followed by a 2nd wakeup call 15 minutes later. All of this was in addition to relying on my internal clock to wake up by early enough, because the last thing we wanted to do was be late for our 6:45 meeting time scheduled by the Road to Hana tour people.

As luck would have it, we raced out of our top floor suite at 6:30 without any wakeup calls whatsoever, on top of which the alarm clock had malfunctioned. We made it halfway down the hall before Barbara figured out she had left her cellphone on the table. We dashed back to retrieve her cell and continued on our way halfway through the second wing before I realized I had forgotten the tickets for the tour. What a circus. See, there was a reason that we had given ourselves an extra 15 minutes of time to meet the deadline. That’s the kind of real estate agents we are — planners — always on time. Back to the room to retrieve the tickets.

By the time we got to the Terrace level and rounded the corner where we were to meet the van, we discovered all of the other passengers were already on board, and even with being 5 minute early, we were still late. Which is probably why we got the last back corner seats.

617 curves, and 56 single-lane bridges. What part of motion sickness did I not predict? Oy. I could be stoic or I could speak up after 30 minutes of discomfort, and speaking up seemed like the better choice. I asked our cheery tour bus driver from Shakopee who, even though he has lived in Hawaii for 26 years still retained his Minnesota accent (don’t dingle dangle, hey) for a plastic bag. He was so polite he asked me what size. Size? Seriously? He spotted the look of agony in my eyes and quickly ripped off a kitchen-size trash bag. Then, he also handed me a piece of ginger, coupled with a frozen can of pop to alternate holding against my neck, under my ears.

My real life saver, though, was the guy sitting next to Barbara, who hailed from Bentonville, Arkansas, home of Wal*Mart and Tyson Foods, the fame of which I only know because of my agent friend, James Dray at Wise Realty. The dude from Bentonville handed me 2 dramamine. Jennifer, from St. Louis, was also gracious enough to offer us second row seats, which were a tremendous help.

By the time we got to the burial place of Charles Lindbergh, whom they say was buried standing straight up so he can look out to sea, all was right with the world again. On the road to Hana, sometimes you’ve got to rely on the kindness of strangers.

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