The morning of our sleepless night we jumped into the water to have a tea party. It didn’t last long because only one turtle accepted our invitation and he was too young to have an in-depth conversation with. The turtle asked me, “What do you see when you look at me?”
We we’re sipping sand out of gold cups. The water was hazy, my head was split into a thousand directions, and I was wearing purple- per usual.
I said to the turtle, “Only what you allow me to see and of course that which is visible to the searching eye. But if you really want to get down to it little buddy, I can see sacred symbols written across your entire body. I can see both an abyss and an oasis inside your shell. I can see a wing tattooed onto your heart, but you are too timid to let it fly.”
The turtle looked at me like I was a turkey, stuck his head in his shell and drifted away.
I was bored after that and we were all ready to get the hell out of dodge. We tried to weigh anchor but it danced with the mooring ball chain through the night and they were still embraced in some sort of tango. It jolted they boat each time we tried to tear them apart. With Sava in the water directing, I drove Juniper in circles to get her untwisted and break her loose form the ball.
Once loose we headed to the ferry dock and the sweetest harbor master ever, pulled up in a golf cart filled with beer and butter for us.
That was the only time we touched the land of Lanai. Barely touched it, rather.
Next we made our way to Lahaina on Maui.
Lahaina used to be called Lele which means “relentless sun.” It it the land of relentless sun and on our way to it there was absolutely no wind. We motored with our fishing lines out. With envy, I watched lots of birds hunt and capture fish that we were hoping for.
The bilge pump was acting finicky so we hand pumped the sour smelling water out along the way. Josh and I took turns. There was a lot of water!
It was a workout.
I would say the best part about sailing with other people is that sometimes I get to just sit back and be a passenger and I like that! Just before Maui, this passenger showered and shaved on the bow, then painted her fingernails and toenails maroon and of course put on her pink lipstick. To me, Maui is the mustang convertible of the islands and I’m a chameleon.
Speaking of chameleons, did I tell you about the bathroom door yet? The lock sticks! There are times when we can’t open it. I am afraid to get locked in there. Getting trapped inside anything is a fear so big that I start sweating and scream and my head fast forwards to the 40 hours I’m gonna be trapped in there. I know, it’s ridiculous.
Anyway, because of all that, I do my “business” with the door open. Anytime anybody has to do “business,” we play Madonna songs really loud and turn our heads. There is no hiding from nothing on a boat!
We got a temporary slip at the marina in Lahaina. There were at least 30 boats anchored or moored just outside the harbor.
On our way into it, we saw people surfing each side of the wall, families fishing from the wall, and kids jumping from the wall. The kids fell with a trail of screams behind them.
In the actual harbor, there is absolutely no room. Boats are packed like sardines and if I breathed too deep the boat would touch fenders with one of the neighbors.
It was so small and we had to reverse into the slip, Tahitian Mooring-style, and at the last minute I freaked out inside and Sava took the helm. I have to work on this style of docking. He does it so easily. As if he’s on a Sunday stroll. What the heck! I gotta get there.
I hate docking and I HATE sailing close-hauled, but it’s all a part of the sailing package.
After we pulled in a man yelled “fire in the hole,” as he started his engine. I even covered my ears when he said it. From now on I’m gonna say that when I start my engine.
We tidied the boat, then got food and some nice cocktails. I got a lilikoi margarita. Sava’s friend came and they spoke a lot of Russian and Josh and I understood every 20th word for which there was no translation. Like “Facebook” etc. I always feel dumber when people are speaking but I have no idea what they are saying.
The first word in the language that I am inventing is “lalalulala” and it‘s polysemantic, like most English words. It can mean “love” or “yellow rose” which is symbolic of love but is also just a flower. It can also mean the place where the sand meets the sea aka shore.
Anyway feel free to smell the lalalulala in my garden. It’s sweet with a touch of sundrops.
The next day we got Angela, the bimini, fixed by a man named Barry who got shipwrecked off the coast of New Zealand on day two of his voyage. He was with four people. The boat broke into pieces. They held on tight to what they thought was a deserted rocky island. Eventually they found the only two people who lived on said island and they were saved.
There are a lot of twos and multiples of twos in that story. Anywho, he did a killer job on Angela.
Josh and Sava went diving after that and I surfed. I am not a surfer, but I love surfing. I have friends who won’t be seen in the water with me because I ride a Rasta-colored Wavestorm, but that doesn’t stop me from doing it, because surfing brings me immense pleasure. I realized- way too late in life- that I don’t have to be perfect or look perfect at everything I do, because life doesn’t care how good I am, it cares how much fun I’m having doing whatever it is I am doing. I realized- way too late in life- that other people’s opinions and judgements about how well I do something or the style in which I do something, doesn’t matter and shouldn’t stop me from doing it. I realized – way too late in life- that if I cling to everything everyone else says about how I should embrace this world, then I’d die miserable in someone else’s world. I keep my flow going by doing whatever it is that makes me giggle inside, and I don’t give a damn what anybody else has to say about it.
Sailing makes me giggle the most. It makes me do a lot of things, like curse and pray and collapse in exhaustion, but mostly giggle.
That night we bid farewell to Josh. He had already decided to sail to Tahiti and wanted to squeeze in some extra time with his lovely lady beforehand. It was a surprise for her, so Sava and I had to pretend like he was still aboard for most of the following day. I have her in my phone as Jenna Mermaid. She is a real mermaid. I’m just an imposter, a wannabe, a pretending-to-be. Her grandma is from Arkansas and that day were texting about chocolate gravy, which I have never heard of, but apparently it’s a thing in Arkansas. The entire time, I couldn’t say a peep about Josh’s absence aboard.
Meanwhile, Sava and I were sailing towards Big Island. He was still on the fence about Tahiti, even though he was the one who brought his passport!
I braced myself mentally for the Alenuihaha Channel. It rests between Maui and Big Island. It is 30 miles wide. It has winds that blow up to 15 knots higher than the open ocean! And it’s known for its steep waves.