The One Where I Disappeared & then Came Back with an Epic Maui Post. Part 1…..

Hey friends and bloglings,

I was gone for a minute, I know. I abandoned MoFo and went to Maui. We have some property over there and I hadn’t been in years. We rent both of our units (3 bdrm in Kahana, 1 bdrm in Kapalua if anyone is interested!) and I manage them. I haven’t had the best year….actually, in my memory I look back on most of 2012 as a series of unfortunate events. And….that’s a bummer man. But I am SO glad I decided to go away. It was off to a rocky start (took some of bad juju from CA to HI). I reserved a rental car 6 months in advance and when I got there, they wouldn’t let me rent the car. !!!!! I’m 27 and I have only rented a car once from Enterprise. I had no issue at all. When I’m on Maui, alone, trying to get my car from Dollar, they tell me over and over that they will not rent me the car because my credit card is a debit card. You know, a check card. It has a Visa logo, but is directly tied to my bank account. And me being me, I have ZERO credit cards. I have a couple (Nordstrom, gas station) but no Visa, Mastercard or Amex that isn’t tied to my bank account. I don’t know….I don’t like spending money I don’t have, so I don’t use credit cards. I thought I could do everything with my debit/credit card because of the Visa logo, but apparently NOT.

So, I am at the airport (at least an hour drive from my destination in Kahana) and none of the other rental car places have any cars. Le sigh….I found one car at National, which was $951 something for the trip. Compared to the $400 rate I was supposed to be getting from Dollar, I could not bring myself to spend an extra $550 of my vacation money for a bullshit car. So, I sat and cried and freaked out. I then got the idea to check for other rental car places on the island and found a car at the Enterprise in Kaanapali, which is about 10/15 min south of Kahana. I took a cab ride that cost me $100+ but was just glad to find a car. The awesome dude at Enterprise took pity on me and gave me a really great rate too—actually lower than Dollar.

Relief. Okay–fast forward to the next night. I’m sitting talking on the lanai with two friends who arrived the night before. Suddenly, loud sirens start going off everywhere. People start running out of the condos with suitcases and we’re like wtf….? Someone stops and tells us there’s a tsunami coming and we have to evacuate like RIGHT NOW. Our condo is right on the beach, so there’s no way it’s safe. We start running around grabbing everything we can, hop in our cars and got to higher ground. We sat in our cars on a hilltop for over 4 hours waiting for the tsunami to come. Everything ended up being fine. It was scary, but so glad everything was okay.

Then, my trip was almost perfect. Just some rental car bullshit, quick evacuation and tsunami scare and then finally….FINALLY…..bliss. Now I’m going to show you some pictures of one of my favorite days ever; my visit to the Maui Gold Pineapple Farm and Packing House. 

Pineapple tops awaiting planting

Awesome pineapple fact: You can slice off the top of your pineapple and plant it to grow a new pineapple plant. Pineapples can grow in CA, but need to be planted indoors in a minimum 5 gallon container. They cannot handle cold temps and they need TONS of sunshine. Like, get a 5 gallon tub on wheels because the plant will need to be moved to wherever the sunshine is.

Baby Pineapple

Pineapples grow on a stalk. They were named pineapples by the first people who discovered them, because they looked like pine cones but were sweet like apples.

Maui Gold pineapples are the best. They have an acid standard! Maui Gold pineapples are 15% acid at the most making them sweeter than any other pineapple. They even have a little testing station inside the packing plant to test pineapples at random to see if they are keeping with that standard.

And what may be one of the coolest things about being on a pineapple farm, Maui Gold in particular, is that you get to taste these luscious golden yellow gems. You can only get pineapples this yellow near the farm they grew up on. Once picked, they only keep for a day or two before being spoiled, so they cannot be shipped anywhere. They were tender, sweet and probably my favorite our of the 3 I tasted. The tour that I took was all you can eat. There were only 3 of us, so me and this one lady went to TOWN. What I didn’t know, was that if you over do yourself on pineapple, you will grow the most grumpy canker sores ever. The bottom right side of my mouth experienced a cluster of the worst canker sores I’ve ever had. They peaked when two of them formed a canker bridge to merge into one giant sore. The right side of my face hurt and even my glands on that side were tender and swollen–that could have been a complete coincidence though. Eating for the remainder of the trip was interesting!

Pineapples packed & ready to ship

The pineapple farm is highly interesting. I learned a ton and will probably only buy Maui Gold pineapples from now on. I had had them before, but after touring the farm and tasting them again I have decided they are superior to any other pineapples out there. I got to take one home to the condo and I also took one home with me to California. The only complaint I have is that I kept hearing mixed info on whether or not a pineapple counted against your number of carry-ons. The verdict is that they are a special item which has to be marked and they do count as a carry-on item. I carry on my luggage so that was a problem for me. The people at Hawaiian Airlines made me check my pineapple…..sigh….But, what was awesome was that the woman who was helping me said to me in a bit of a snotty tone that I would still have to pay…you know, the ridiculous $25 they make people pay for checking bags? Because air travel is horrible and sort of disgusting nowadays….but they don’t take payments at the counter. I assumed she meant that they would charge my card–the one I used to buy tickets. Well, that card expired right before my trip and I was issued a new one with different numbers. The joke is on you Hawaiian Airlines….My pineapple safely made it on to a connecting flight and through baggage. I can’t believe my tiny pineapple traveled with luggage and cargo and survived. May have been those fresh macadamias I had also shoved into the box.

The box.
The prize.
How to properly remove the top from a pineapple (if don’t wish to plant). Grab at the base and twist and it will come off clean.

I would recommend visiting the farm if you’re on Maui. Also, if you’re looking to buy Maui Gold pineapples, they do sell them on their website. They’re a little on the pricey side to order online, but they usually do have them at Costco stores for a good price. On the island, avoid farm stands unless there is a farmer’s market going on. Many of the farm stands also charge a ton for the Maui Gold pineapples and other produce like papaya, avocados etc. You can get decent pineapples and other produce at a lot of the grocery stores around Maui and at the many amazing farmer’s markets. One of my favorites was in Makawao where I got coconut pineapple jam, homemade brown rice miso, macadamia pesto and guava jam. I miss Maui already.

Okay, that’s it for today’s really, really, really long post. More to come.


6 Comments on “The One Where I Disappeared & then Came Back with an Epic Maui Post. Part 1…..

  1. I think it’s totally stupid that people won’t rent to you w/o a credit card. What could be more responsible than paying in cash with actual money you have? It’s the people who charge money they don’t have that would arouse suspicion in me. Anyway, sounds like a good trip all in all. I would love to go to HI, must be so beautiful there!

    I absolutely love those Maui Gold pineapples. They sell them at my local co-op, and the are so delicious, they’re addictive!

    Glad the car worked out and the tsunami was a false alarm.

  2. I love to read about your adventures, but you have left my mouth watering for pineapple!

  3. You own a condo there?! Lucky! I may have to check that out the next time we head to Hawaii. I’m pretty sure if I heard tsunami sirens during my first day there, I would have a meltdown, that would be so freaky! I think the best pineapple I’ve ever had was a white pineapple in Kauai, but I’ve yet to try Maui Gold, I have to say that I’m envious that you Americans can bring them back with you. I’ll have to wait until my next visit there before I can taste fruit that good.

    • Um, a white pineapple sounds like something I need to have in my life. Next time I go to Maui, I think I would like to also spend a few days on Kauai. I love the Big Island as well, but because our property is on Maui, that is the only island I ever seem to end up on these days and hey, I am not complaining :D. If you ever need a 3 bedroom or 1 bedroom on the west side of the island, I would love to give you a discount. I also just instituted a policy of leaving some welcome goodies for our arriving guests as well. Nothing too fancy, but everyone could use a bottle of water and a snack before they hit the grocery store or the bed!

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