I recently spent a week in Maui. When I mentioned to friends that I was headed there for spring break, everyone said the same thing: Oh man. You are going to love Maui. Which got me thinking. How have all of these motherfuckers been to Maui, an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean?
For our first four nights in Maui, we stayed near Makawao in a quaint upcountry bed and breakfast called Maui’s Northshore Lookout. The property had four guest rooms, a small pool, a breathtaking view of the jungled hills, and one lucky motherfucking cat formerly living in a San Francisco high-rise.
On our second day, after drinking made-to-order smoothies and vanilla lattes on a porch overlooking banana trees, I meandered into the shared living space and noticed this small sign propped up on a shelf:
The sign’s sentiment, I would discover, was one that permeated the whole island. This sign was telling me to chill out or get out, motherfucker.
I had no problem with that. Mahalo.
Maui is beautiful. It has lush mountains, white sandy beaches, and a plethora of flora not found on the mainland. It looked and sounded like paradise. I wanted to bottle the sound of mornings in Makawao and send it to Dan Harris for his meditation app.
Our four nights at the B&B were relaxing and peaceful. We day tripped to Baldwin Beach and saw gigantic sea turtles sunning themselves on the sand. They were so still and limp, I was afraid they were dead. Thankfully, the woman who served us the lattes explained they were not dead. Motherfuckers just needed a break from swimming.
We drove to the top of the Haleakalā volcano high above the clouds, where I saw a big-ass motherfucking telescope. We drove the Road to Hana and visited the Waiʻānapanapa black sand beach, a scene from heaven if it exists, with aqua waves crashing against black rocks.
After four nights, we were on to the second half of our trip, to stay at the Hyatt Regency on Ka'anapali Beach, about an hour west of our upcountry getaway. We checked in, dropped our bags in the room, and headed to the pool. There were so many motherfuckers, we couldn’t even find open chairs.
The next day, we headed out on a Hula Girl sailing trip to go snorkeling in Honolua Bay on the north side of the island. After an hour of rough motoring through rain and wind, we strapped on our waistband floating devices and climbed down the boat’s ladder and into the warm, clear waters of the bay.
We kicked over to the reef, where I saw more motherfucking fish than I’d ever seen in my life! I swam next to a turtle and watched tropical fish of all shapes and colors glide by, so close I could have touched them. My heart swelled with an unfamiliar feeling. Equanimity? Awe?
The best things in life really are motherfucking free.
When we got back to the hotel, we ordered room service. Our meals came in single-use plastic containers. I did some quick math and calculated that if the hotel has 800 rooms and each room has at least two people, then about two thousand pieces of plastic would be making their way into the world, likely the ocean, where my beloved turtles lived.
And what about the $19 Mai Tais served in plastic cups with fluorescent pink straws from the bar by the pool? If I see a sea turtle with a straw in its nose I swear to God I am going to cut a motherfucker.
I know I’m a hypocrite. I realize I flew on a massive jet powered by fossil fuel to get to this tropical paradise. But what’s with the single-use plastic? And please don’t say motherfucking COVID.
I tried to book dinner at the Old Lahaina Luau, but it was already full. No matter. It seemed too touristy, anyway. Later that week, my friend told me I had to see the luau at the Hyatt.
“Why?” I inquired.
Because, according to him, they have motherfucking flamethrowers. Next time.
My friends were right. I did love Maui. I loved seeing the curve of the coastline from my perch in the hills. I loved knowing that the Polynesians rowed 2,500 motherfucking miles to get here first.
And I loved knowing the Hawaiian alphabet only has twelve letters: A, E, H, I, K, L, M, N, O, P, U, and W, four of which — Honu — spelled what I loved about Maui most: