We go to Hawaii every five years.
We have taken the cruise from California to the islands and then on down to Mexico and back to Long Beach. If you like to read that is a good way to get to the islands.
The first time I went to Hawaii was for my sisters wedding.
My son was just a few months old and our fellow travelers weren’t very enthusiastic about him coming along with us. We were all strangers on a group tour.
My son was one of the better behaved by the way.
One poor fellow with us had been sent on this vacation after he had gone into hospital and his wife had cleaned out all of his bank accounts and hit the road. He was always late, lost and out of touch with the world around him.
We stayed in Waikiki for a few days in a vey nice high rise hotel just a few blocks inland from the sea.
The trade winds blow most days and I find the climate very agreeable as I run a little on the warm side. The breeze cools me down nicely.
One night I awoke to the smell of smoke in our room. That is never a good thing when high up in a building in a land that is very different and unfamiliar.
The first thing I thought of course, was, “this building is on fire. We must get the heck out of here and fast.”
I left our room with my wife and child in tow and knocked on my parents and older brother’s rooms as we headed to the stairs.
“Everyman for himself,” had echoed in my head but I did wake them as we left for the stairs quickly. They never came down stairs for some reason. Their rooms were across form us on the other side of the building.
We hadn’t taken the time to put our cloths on before we left our room. My son was still asleep in my arms as my wife and I climbed down the several flights of stairs in our jammies. He has always been a good sleeper.
It must have been around five in the morning. The climb down on the stairs was slow and creepy. We were shaken up to say the least as we entered the lobby from the stairwell only to see the normal activities of a large restaurant and hotel going on in front of us.
I could hear the sounds of the fire department arriving in the rear of the building. I could see the reflection of flames on the rear windows of the hotel. The flames were growing higher and higher yet no one seemed alarmed.
“What the heck is going on,” I wondered.
“The hotel is on fire,” I mentioned quietly to the waiter walking past me at a leisurely, “Hawaiian pace.”
“No it isn’t, that’s just the field across the street. That happens now and then. No big deal. Nothing to worry about brother. Nice jam jams by the way.”
Several people in the lobby looked at us with interest and wonder as my wife and I stood in front of them in our sleeping attire.
It turns out that our hotel had no glass in the louvered covered windows and the building just acts like a very tall chimney causing the air and smoke to fill the upper rooms on that one side.
Just our luck, I guess. If we happened to be hungry at that moment we could have had a nice breakfast without having to wait very long.
We didn’t have breakfast on our mind at that particular moment, however. Survival was the issue at hand or so we thought.
We turned around and rode the elevator up to our room after we were sure that the hotel was not burning down.
This is what travel is all about. Learning new things in new lands and meeting new people.
We have always had a great time in Hawaii and I have a few fun stories about them coming soon.
Many of my novels and book of short stories will be up on audible soon.