June 06, 2003
Travel Diary Day 7: Maui

I woke up relatively late, 7.00; goofed-off, wrote the last entry, and finally got around to breakfast after walking down to the beach. The hotel, unusually, doesn't go right up to the water. After they had acquired the property, they found that the area abutting the beach was a Hawaiian burial ground. This led to some controversy for the resort, but they did the right thing and deeded the sacred ground to the state while setting the hotel back behind it.

During breakfast I worked on the draft of the commentary Joe and I are writing for Cell Cycle. I received pitying looks from other guests probably wondering why this guy can't relax.

A couple next to me: He is off at the buffet, the waiter asks her if she'd like coffee; yes she would, and "my husband likes it with cream and sugar." She seems both surprised and delighted with the novelty of saying that word.

My activation energy was low, but I dragged myself out to my Soccer Mom conveyance and decided to drive north on 30. I think car rental agencies pretty much discourage people from exploring the northwest corner of Maui because the road is winding and treacherous. It's called the Kahekili Highway (Edit: In fact the rental agencies specifically prohibit driving rental cars here--though 90% of the cars I saw were rentals), but highway is an exceedingly generous word for it.

Driving it is supposed to give a flavor of what Maui might have been like before tourism. The precarious road climbs cliff sides and plunges into little valleys. At first it is two lanes, then a wide one lane with a dotted yellow stripe, then macadam barely the width of my Town & Country (what a preposterous name for a minivan). At this point, after negotiating a sphincter-tightening stretch, I chicken out and turn around at the first opportunity. I just haven't the faith (or the insurance coverage) to risk Soccer Mom Mobile. Pictures below. The photo with the sideview mirror is where I turned around right above what I believe is the Waihe'e Valley (echoing with rooster cries):



All of these photos were taken with the Canon G3, a very capable, and quite feature-laden camera. I still am getting used to not bringing the camera up to my eye to take a photo. Framing a shot from the LCD is an adjustment, but it does have the advantage that I can angle the screen and take shots that I couldn't make through a viewfinder. Technology-wise, it's a better camera than my Fujifilm RIP, the flow is just different.

After getting home, I took a late lunch by the beach: A "Lahaina Sunset", Maui onion rings, and ginger beef handrolls. I spilled my drink brushing away a fly, but the server was kind enough to give me another without charging me. I met Felix, the local cat.

Walking up the hill back to my room, all of a sudden I felt bone-sappingly tired.

Nap.

Posted by erich at June 06, 2003 11:15 PM
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