Moving to Maui, Part Three


So I now had a part-time job on Maui and a place to live, at the Aston Maui Kaanapali Villas, which is a combination of hotel and condos:

I had brought along one suitcase and my bicycle. The condo I was renting had four plates, four forks, four glasses. Life was simple, and I was discovering I liked it this way. No boxes of unorganized Christmas decorations haunting me from the attic. No closet full of winter clothes. No grandmother’s china gathering dust.

Actually, my design clients in Maui tell me that that’s the very best part about a vacation home on Maui: no stuff. So if that’s what we all aspire to, why do we own so much stuff? The truth is, it owns us…

Anyway, I was settling in, and deciding what to do about my life back in California. Condo life was agreeing with me. Until, that is, the night of the infamous late-night condo cleaning incident. I’m pretty sure they still talk about it at the front desk there.

Here’s the scene: it’s HOT in Maui. So once the sun went down and it cooled off, I decided to do a little cleaning. I put on a thin white t-shirt. And that was all. Get the picture? Hold that thought.

I opened the door to the condo and tossed out the throw rugs to shake later. Now there are fire codes in hotels, and safety codes, and these all conspire to create self-closing doors. Big, heavy, metal self-closing doors. A huge gust of wind blew through and WHAM! The saying “don’t let the door hit you in the butt on the way out” was suddenly reality.

Except that now I was out. Locked out of my condo on the outside walkway three floors up in nothing but a see-through t-shirt.The only thing that could have made it worse would have been if I was out on a tiny ledge, like in the movies. If there was ever a time I wished to be beamed up, Scotty, it was now.

What to do, what to do?

I yanked my t-shirt down over what  I could cover, got into the (now functioning) elevator and rode downstairs. I moved like a lady in a too-tight skirt, mincing my way to the front desk. I stopped just short of it and called around a support beam: “Hey, excuse me! I’ve lost my key and I’m locked out.”

The night clerk was named Mary. Mary was suspected of doing a little nipping at the bottle she kept stashed behind the desk (actually, a lot of nipping) because the boss wasn’t there at night to know the difference. Mary looked over in a fog and tried to focus on me.

“Who’s that? Who’s there?”

I called out my name. I told her which condo I was in. But Mary didn’t know me from a tourist.

“Well, what do you want? I can’t hear you. Come over here to the front desk!”

I sighed, clutched my shirt, and began my slow journey into the middle of the lobby. At just the same moment that a tourist couple entered and wanted to check in. I sidled up to the front desk, turned my back to them and whispered loudly,  “I’m locked out. I can’t get in. Do you have a spare key to my apartment?”

“Well no, of course not. I’ll have to call the maintenance guys. I don’t know who’s on duty.”

The maintenance GUYS? Great. Just great. The gods who had come out of the sky in my deux a machina moment and given me a great apartment and a job were now extracting their pound of flesh. Literally. I was sure I could hear them laughing up there.

I yanked my t-shirt down as hard as I could as the tired tourists glared at me. I steeled myself for the moment my Savior With a Key would get his eye-full. Luckily he was a gentleman, and pretended that it was common-place for him to have to have to let stranded women in see-through t-shirts and no bottoms into their apartments. Let me tell you though, I made sure he walked ahead of me on my walk of shame.

Like I said, I’m pretty sure they still talk about this at the front desk, because let’s not forget, I NOW WORKED THERE!  And I know I made the maintenance guys’ Hall of Fame for stupid guest tricks at the hotel. Except, that is, that just the week before I had dropped my key down the teeny little crack in the elevator shaft and they had to rescue me from that.

What are the chances? And how could a woman who was smart enough to own a home and manage a business keep pulling these incredibly dumb stunts? Deux a machina.

And the gods laughed.

A hui hou! (til next time). If you’d like to subscribe to this blog, please click the “Follow” button to the right.

Aloha, Jamaica

Copyright Jamaica Michaels, 2012. All rights reserved. May not be reblogged or reprinted without express written permission of the author.

7 thoughts on “Moving to Maui, Part Three

  1. Hi, great story! My partner and I are staying at the Maui Ka’anapali Villas next month on our first ever trip to Hawaii, so it was a nice surprise to find your blog. Do you still work there? Don’t answer if you’d rather not. My main question though is about lounge chairs. in one of your blog entries you mentioned renting one for a month/by the month. Are the chairs on the grounds of the Villas only available for rent and not just to plop into as a guest of the condos/hotel? Just wondering. Thanks for the stories! Hoping I don’t see any cockroaches or centipedes though! =)

    • Hi Sean Patrick. I’m laughing because I actually rented a beach cabana, but didn’t have a photo of that to post. So yes, you can use the lounge chairs to your heart’s content, but the covered cabana chairs are for rent directly on the sandy beach. You will LOVE the Villas. I only fill in there now as concierge when someone goes on vacation. I really enjoyed that job. Go see Dawn or Nancy, they’ll do a good job for you. Have fun. Let me know if you have other questions. Aloha! BTW: How did you stumble upon the blog? It’s nice to know how people are finding it.

      • Aloha and mahalo! I’m a pasty white Irish-American, so I stay out of the sun anyway. =) But just wanted to make sure the regular chairs weren’t for an extra fee. I found your blog on a Google search for recent images of Ka’anapali Villas. I clicked on recent photos and then looked at the Website they were from. So rest assured your tags are working well! =) I bookmarked your blog at the top of my Firefox browser, so I plan on following along. I write a lot too, so keep on doing what you do so well! There will be days when it seems like NO ONE is out there reading along (because people don’t like taking the time to comment), but we have to keep on pressing forward! Mahalo again! –Sean

    • Aloha,
      I looked at your site…you’re doing a very nice job with it. Where on the mainland do you live now? May I add a link to your site on mine?

      • We are in Utah – there’s actually a good group of us that live right around each other so that’s nice to see some friends from back home every once in awhile. Please add a link, I’d appreciate it. Looking forward to seeing more of your stories!

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