Monday, August 25, 2014

Hawaiian vacation, day 1

Due to requests that I re-start my vacation series, I now present my summary of our trip to the islands. For those who haven't read my past vacation archives, they can be found here.

Our trip got off to a wild start with Craig.

Craig HATES flying. In the days leading up to the trip he became increasingly worked-up about going, and convinced himself that we were going to have a horrible time (no, he's never been to Hawaii before).

This reached a comical highlight the night before we left. Mrs. Grumpy sent me to get some extra socks for the kids, and so I went to his room. He was on the phone with a teen-crisis hotline, hysterical about going on the family vacation.

One can only imagine the thoughts going through the mind of the crisis volunteer on the other end. I imagine all the issues she'd heard that day:

"My stepfather is sexually abusing me."

"Mom won't stop drinking, and my Dad left us."

"My parents are taking me to Hawaii."

By nature of this job I'm pretty good at keeping a straight face. But I likely would have had to mute the line if I were the one dealing with Craig's call.

Of course, once we got to the airport he was fine, worried only about his hair.

Mrs. Grumpy and my mom took the kids to the overpriced McD's for breakfast, and I sat down at the gate to get some work done. I try to ignore others at airports and on planes. Don't talk to me, I won't talk to you, and we'll be fine.

Unfortunately, many disagree with this view. No sooner had I sat down and started work on some CME than a lady plopped down next to me, tapped me on the shoulder, and screamed "Can you believe this is all the hummus they give you for $8?"

I looked at the styrofoam container she was waving around, and tried to discourage her by saying "mmmph" and turning back to my reading.  That only led her to believe I was deaf, mute, or both. So she stuck the thing under my nose and said "SERIOUSLY!!! THIS WAS $8! ISN'T THAT AN OUTRAGE?"

Failing to get my attention, she moved to a guy in a business suit, who pretended to be on a phone call. Then she went over to bug some family, who told her to go complain at the food place. She then left the gate area, making me wonder if the whole thing was a TSA test of some sort.

A few minutes elapsed. Then a guy in a business suit sat down on my other side, whipped out a phone, and immediately began talking loudly into it with phrases like "Did you talk to the senator?", "I have meetings with senators all week. This is a MAJOR national issue," and "You need to realize how much money is involved at this level. It's very serious." He kept this up until he realized no one around was staring at him, so he left the gate, too. Hopefully someone catches him and re-starts his medication.

Mercifully, Mrs. Grumpy and the kids returned, scaring off other attention-seekers with some I'm more familiar with.

Our flight was delayed because an overhead bin had a faulty lock, and wouldn't stay closed. We watched as 2-3 different techs got on the plane, tried to fix it, got out a greasy maintenance book, argued about which screw was the problem, and then finally left to find a different type of screwdriver. While they were off the plane some guy in a "Binford Tools" t-shirt got out of his seat, slammed it closed, and punched the lock with his bare hand. When the tech guys came back it was working fine, and we got to take off.

At one point during the flight Craig got up to go brush his hair in the bathroom, so I went to to get something out of my carry-on. I noticed this suitcase in the bin. I'm not sure if the suitcase is inoperable, or the medical equipment, or both. And if the medical equipment is inoperable, why is it being flown around? Or even left on the plane, for that matter?

While I didn't bother with the in-flight entertainment, I did look up at one point to see an excerpt from a television show with 3 guys pairing beers with different varieties of Rocky Mountain Oysters. I guess it beats combining them into 1 beverage.

The best part about the Maui airport is that even the restroom signs are on vacation:

Because, if there's anything more relaxing than a laid-back bathroom stick-figure, I don't know what it is.

Kahului airport here is conveniently located next to a Costco. This, I suspect, is probably the busiest Costco in the world, as it's constantly packed with people who just got off planes and are there to stock up on Diet Coke, bagels, beer, and other essential vitamins & minerals. And, of course, to have lunch after your flight. Because the lady bitching about hummus at the airport has nothing on the people who just shelled out $9.50 for a bag of nuts during the flight.


jimbo26 said...

Brightened up my morning . Cold , wet and damp in the UK .

Anonymous said...

In Hawaii, people with disabilities go naked.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your vacation with us! Nothing beats a Grumpy vacation story to brighten my Monday morning.

Mockingbird said...

Craig's it...okay?

Mari-Ann said...

Loved the post! I hope the trip was all-around wonderful. Airports are thinly disguised insane asylums. You just proved it again.

tbunni said...

Sorry Mari-Ann, I have to differ with you. I believe insane asylums are thinly disguised as airports...

Better you than me, Dr Grumpy!

Anonymous said...

Personally, if I were the governor of Colorado and I were running for re-election this year, I'd try to prevent a business I'm associated with from creating a product with a "castration" theme. It seems like it's just handing a line of attack ads to the opposition.

Jessica said...

That thing about the Kahului Costco? It's absolutely true. My parents live on Maui and have to try to go at the non-tourist hours, which is approximately never. The first place everyone takes their rental cars is inevitably that Costco.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure the calves whose Rocky Mountain oysters were being paired with beer would consider $9.50 a bargain for a bag of nuts.

Hattie said...

Time for a Mai Tai!

Ms. Donna said...

Did the hair survive the flight?

bcmigal said...

Thanks so much for posting. You added so much light to an otherwise very dark Monday! Can't wait to hear about day #2!

gloria p said...

>Anon: Locals don't eat Rocky Mt. Oysters. They are what we feed to tourists so they can prove they were macho in CO. It's a Dept. of Tourism scam.

Dr. G: Did Craig have anything to complain about in Maui? If he hated it, I'd be glad to change places with him next time you go. (Then he could brag about the Rocky Mt. Oysters.)

Anonymous said...

Tim the Tool Man Taylor would be so proud!

Tsunoba said...

The crisis hotline. Wow.

Speaking of Hawaii, my mother went there once on a cruise. (She also used the live there, but that's not important to the story.)

While she was there, she was...somewhere, I think it was a park or something, and this couple came up to her and asked where the Mahalo Cans were. After a bit of back and forth confusion, the couple finally clarified that they were talking about trash cans, the ones that have "Mahalo" written on them.

It was at this point that my mother informed them that "Mahalo" is Hawaiian for "Thank you."

Anonymous said...

I love your vacation posts! By the way, you haven't really lived until you travel from Boston, MA to Aukland, NZ with a 3-yr old and a 6-yr old! Tricia

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