Wednesday, January 07, 2009

day two:

i woke up at six-thirty in the morning and already the house was awake. her parents were in the flower room making leis. (thats what they do for a living. they make leis and have pretty girls sell them to tourist. it seems so intentional. such a given. the kind of story no one would write because was already written long before. you move to maui and you surf until your bones are filled with salt, then you make leis into your old age. how wonderfully typical.) she is in there with them expertly poking a long needle into the butt of a jade bulb and talking about new york. i walk in and say hello and scratch my head and ask if anyone wants some coffee, because im going on a run to the shop. the parents say no thank you and smile and she says ill go with you and does a small, excited jump and runs to get her slippers. on the way back from the cafe i smoke a cigarette and we talk about what were going to do that day. this scene repeats itself every morning im there.

a group of us go to breakfast at a small diner on the beach. we watch the waves and eat eggs and rice and fruit and white chocolate macadamia pancakes with coconut syrup spilled on top. our server has a daughter she went to high school with and they talk a minute about where everyone is in life. she introduces me to the server. i shake her hand. the server has a deep tan and sagging, leathery skin. despite this unfortunate condition, she looks really good for her age (a familiar symptom i noticed in Hawaii's women). we exchange pleasantries and when the check comes we all split it. not once did anyone foot the bill. i found it kind of refreshing.

afterward we walk down to the beach and dive into the ocean. it isnt even eleven in the morning yet. she tells me we will go to the other side of the island to visit a place called Hana. its the paradise of paradise, is how she pitches it. she says we'll do this on the following friday. we'll make a trip of it. i dive underwater and swim towards her waist and squeeze and pull her down with me and she doesnt fight back. when we come up she giggles and i spit water from my nose and she points at me and says, ew boogers! we watch a tourist try to walk into the water with his flippers already on and laugh. she tells me in Hana there is seven sacred pools and a waterfall we can dive from. i'm excited.

later we go surfing. its her, her dad, her sister, her cousin, and me, while her step mother and uncle watch from the beach. everyone catches a wave. she gets up easily, as if she does it every weekend. i have trouble paddling out, then laying on the board, then sitting on the board. i dont get past that level of skill, and still cant say i sat on the board for longer than thirty seconds. on the way back in i get frustrated because it doesnt seem like im moving. she comes and helps me and her dad surfs by and says i made a great effort. thats the only attempt at surfing i make the entire trip. im sure i looked pathetic.

we have dinner at the table at home that night. it is all of us again, just like at hula grills. we eat fish and salad and garlic bread. we drink wine. everyone is excited about the party tomorrow evening. they are expecting two hundred people. there is a dj booked. there will be free food and booze. its supposed to be warm and there is no forecast of rain. i drink a glass more wine than everyone else except her, who keeps up with me sip for sip, for solidarity's sake, of course.

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:gray matters: by jkg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at downtownalleys.blogspot.com.