Catch up with the story!
Part one: Vacations Give the Loveliest Headaches
Part two: Some Vacations Don’t Need an Airport
Part three: Am I Actually on Vacation Yet?
Part four: Getting Lei’d While on Vacation
Well, we were finally on the open road, late in the evening, on a small piece of volcanic land in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Paradise! I mean, I think it was paradise because I couldn’t see a thing. The car was headed north to Waikoloa Village which meant that my view out of the driver’s window was a big gaping hole of nothingness. Greg’s view was a great big gaping hole of nothingness with a few streetlights thrown in. The boy had conked out in the back seat as soon as we had started driving and didn’t give a crap what was out there.
I was as every bit of tired as he was but there was stuff to do, lots of stuff to do, and I was running on the pure adrenaline of actually having made it to the island. Only twenty five miles to go before we sleep (okay, find the place, check in, drag the luggage, unpack and try to find something to eat—and then sleep) and I immediately find the absolute slowest driver on the entire planet. If I were at home with roads and neighborhoods I understood I would have left that little Kia in the dust, but I was nervous. This was a highway with only one lane each way and rolling hills that blocked my view every three seconds. I was trapped. Nooooooo!!!!!
The hubby took the time to look up directions on his phone at this point because he needed something to do, and NOT because he didn’t trust my razor sharp navigating skills to be able the handle the “drive north 25 miles and then turn left” instructions that I had already memorized. I, however, shifted in my seat, looked left into nothingness, played with the radio, looked left into nothingness, contemplated passing the car in front of me on the right shoulder, looked left into nothingness…It was a cruel, cruel way to end the night and I was losing the special buzz of finally being in Hawaii for my vacation.
But, much grumbling later, we made it to our turn off and I managed to go left on my first try (see, Greg, I can do it). After so much nothing to look at, I was very surprised to see a bustling little neighborhood in front of me! A big enough neighborhood for two separate outdoor malls, restaurants, condos, resorts and golf course—and it was extremely busy with a lot of people milling about. It took me a second to remember that it was late Saturday night and people were getting their good times on and that it was probably not a great idea to run anyone over with my car. It was a tall order though, because I wasn’t anticipating a stop sign every fifty feet or people that didn’t give a shit if I stopped or not. We weren’t in the middle of nothing anymore.
A few minutes of stopping and starting later, we found the resort. Hooray! Then the terror began—do we park first or go to the lobby first? Should we park or do valet (I don’t have any cash on me, do you?) or what? Do we need to check in to get a special pass? No, let’s just go for it. Wait a minute—it costs twenty dollars a night to park? Are you freaking kidding me? Oh wait, I knew that. I knew that. Kay, let’s go for it. It looks pretty full though, should I try to get as close as possible or just take whatever I see first? I’m feeling lucky, let’s get closer. Ten minutes later we ended up parking near the entrance gate we first went through. Yeah, that sounds about par for the course.
We followed the concrete trail through Hawaiian foliage to the front lobby like a very sad little train trying hard to get up a hill. The boy was still half comatose and wasn’t feeling the whole “carry his own luggage” vibe and was hard to push and prod to the lobby. We actually got lapped by a family of seven that had better things to do then wait for our sorry asses. Taking the last turn we finally four our oasis! At least seven convertible Mustangs and Camaros were getting the valet treatment and I took a second to wonder why I wasn’t one of them. Oh yeah, saving money, sensible car, yadda, yadda…Suckers!
We got through a very (surprisingly) streamlined check in process where the final words of welcome to us included something like “the train should be by in a few minutes” to take us to our room. Hmm. Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore. We waited patiently as possible for the train and perused the map of the resort and realized we were dealing with something the likes of we never had before. The resort had three separate buildings just for rooms. We’re usually “stay at the hotel where you park the car in front of your room” types. The kinds of places where you have to walk across the parking lot to get the awesome pool that is located next the highway. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a tiny bit, but it really wasn’t an environment we had ever really seen before and it was awesome!
It wasn’t until later in the trip that we realized we lost an average of fifteen minutes of free time each time we waited for the train, but at that moment it was the coolest thing ever. Our room was in the farthest building from the lobby and there was a ten minute hike up and through the hallways to get to it, but it was all good. We were officially at the start of the fun stuff. Suddenly wide awake, the boy pushed his way inside with his mouth hanging open and a very hearty “This is EPIC!” spewing forth so loud our neighbors two doors down could have heard. He wasn’t wrong. Big, clean, and not an airport or a rental car—it was, indeed, epic.
Past family vacations had been conducted with the same schedule that included the unpacking of bags before doing anything else but this time I immediately spit on that idea by grabbing my gifted airline laulau and macadamia nuts and heading straight out to the balcony. I couldn’t see much since it was so dark near the ocean but I did have a great view of a couple of young adults canoodling by the swimming pool. I greedily ate my food in record time as Greg remained faithful to his tried and true vacation agenda by putting his clothes away and the boy staked his claim on the pullout bed. A little while later, after taking care of some major necessities and finding the hubby already in bed I bundled up the boy, tore off my jeans (but not really), took ownership of the only television remote and let myself be carried away.
© DRB 2016