So This Thing Happened …

Scene 3

Even the trip from the jetway to baggage claim seemed different from mainland airports.   Annie’s first impression of Maui was a cacophony of flowers – real and fake, lei and arrangements – accompanied by scented symphony of various fresh tropical blossoms and the wall of dense humidity.

“Mom, I feel like I’m breathing through a sponge!

“I know, Emma.  It takes some getting used to.”  The pervasive clamminess on her skin barely mitigated Annie’s joy.  “Anyway, that’s the price you pay for paradise!”

“ANNIE!!!!!!  JOSEPH!!!  EMMA!!!!!!”

All three heads turned to see the attractive sixty-ish woman barreling towards them – arms outstretched, beautiful plumeria lei in hand.

“Rose!”  As Annie reached to hug her sister-in-law, Rose returned the embrace, somehow managing to include all three of them at once.

“Aloha!  Oh, I’m so happy you’re here!” Starting with Annie, Rose proceeded to ceremoniously adorn each person with their own floral lei, accompanied by a kiss on the cheek and another hug.  Annie assumed the hug was Rose’s own addition to the process.  Rose stood back and laughed at the three tourists in front of her – all faces wearing sappy/happy combination of bliss and disbelieve that they were really in Hawaii.  “Oh you guys so lolo.  Let’s get da bags and get outta heah.”

The twins were dispatched to retrieve their many pieces of luggage and Rose enveloped Annie with another wonderful bear hug before kicking into gear.  “Okay, heah’s the scoops.  I gonna take you straight to da house.  My granddaughter is  deah now, stocking da fridge.  You rest.  Tomorrow I come get you and take you to da car place.  Do wat you need to do, get settled then in two days, we get one party!”

“Rose, that sounds great.  Thank you”  Annie turned serious for a moment.  “I mean, really.  Thank you.  I appreciate this so much.  “

“Eh, yeah, I know.  We happy you here – that’s the main ting.”

“It just all clicked into place.  The kids have wanted to visit you and see Hawaii for so long and bringing them as a graduation present seemed perfect.  And Eddie’s insurance policy, well…” Annie’s voice trailed off.  Ever the dreamer, Eddie Jones impulsively took out a million dollar insurance policy on himself when they were in their early twenties.  He jokingly told her if anything happened to him, it would be her consolation prize.  Annie never liked the idea of it and assumed he let it expire.  But he didn’t.  The fact that losing her soul mate resulted in a modest fortune was the supreme irony of Annie’s life.  In the four years since Eddie’s passing, she had to admit – the money – though not infinite – had certainly made life easier.  As a web designer and quasi computer nerd, it allowed Annie to work when she wanted and only on projects that interested her.  This in turn enabled her to be the kind of ‘hands on’ Mom she always wanted to be.  The closeness of the three of them was a tribute to this.

“Well, Annie, some things are meant to be.  Da caretaker ting and then the police ting and you know, The Man Above does stuffs like this.”

Annie smiled but didn’t comment on Rose’s divine reference.  It just wasn’t Annie’s thing.  But she had to admit – the circumstances of this visit were pretty remarkable.  When she phoned Rose to tell her they were thinking of coming to Maui for a couple weeks, Rose told her that the owner of the restaurant where she had worked for years was going to be on the mainland for the summer and was looking for someone to caretake his property.  And then – just a week ago – Rose called to say that a police officer and family friend mentioned the Maui County Police Department needed a web designer ASAP and the county connection wasn’t available at the moment.  Nice coincidences, she supposed.

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  • ronmitchelladventure: Truth be told, I wanted to ask, "Can we touch with anything we want?" Decided not to ask, as sometimes a sick sense of humor falls flat. Plus, I was c
  • martiwrites: On one hand, I actually facilitated those training classes for years. On the other hand, I'm a Serb living in the land of aloha. Double whammy and h
  • ronmitchelladventure: As a manager, I refrained from my cultural hug and kiss on the cheek greeting after attending sexual harassment training for managers. We learned that
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