Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Normally I’d be telling you this around September, but logistical demands have meant that Mr. Gleemonex and I will be taking our big vacation in May this year. My requirements are simple: sun, warm temps, beach. We are huge fans of Hawaii, having been there five times so far (Kauai twice, and Maui, the Big Island, and Oahu once each) and seriously considering moving there, so this time we thought we’d do Molokai since we haven’t tried it yet. But it wasn’t panning out — bad flight times, mega-expensive flights, nothing in the way of hotel choice (like, Expedia couldn’t book it at all, when I tried them for reference purposes).

Next choice: Maui. UNACCEPTABLE flights (like, either $900 each for a non-stop, or $700 each for one that stopped in Honolulu, with an EIGHT-HOUR layover, and arrived back in SFO at 5:50 a.m.). Plus the hotels were fucking ridiculous — the place we stayed in a few years ago, a nice but not spectacular joint on Kaanapali beach, is running over $400 a night these days. Bitch, it didn’t cost that much back then, and I ain’t payin that now. Even the Kaanapali Beach Hotel, a locally-owed, un-schwank place, was $205/night. So … no.

I priced all the other islands — Kauai, our first love; the Big Island, where we ate the best of anywhere we’ve traveled (with the possible exception of Paris); Oahu, where we’d avoid Honolulu entirely in favor of the north and east shores; Lanai, impossible unless you’re Bill Motherhumping Gates. No dice. So I broadened the search: Los Cabos. Puerto Rico. San Diego. Turks & Caicos. Miami. South Padre. Punta Cana. Florida Keys. The entire goddamn Caribbean. I was about to give up. Until I went back to the Molokai idea.

Epiphany: condos! We’d stayed in one our second visit to Kauai, and that worked out fine. And lo — here’s one, in the best area of the west side, for a magical $75 a night. YAY INTERNETS! We take that, we pay the extortionist price for the flight (oddly, less than the last time I looked), and we’re good to go!

So in less than three weeks, we will be on our way to the Most Hawaiian Isle, a place that’s 38 miles long, 10 miles wide, and holds fewer than 7,000 permanent residents. Even among northern Californians, who go to Hawaii like Texans go to Padre or SoCallies to Vegas, Mr. Gleemonex and I together know exactly one person who’s ever been there. Ain’t a stoplight on the whole island, no fast food, no K-Marts … it is gonna be SO AWESOME.



Anonymous shen said...

I live on oahu and go to the north shore for mini vaca's. Still expensive for a shared rental. $100/night. see http://sharkscoverentals.com/

for bigger ones I go back to my family on maui. Free place to stay!

2:48 PM  
Anonymous Jenn in Sacramento said...

I go to Hawaii quite a bit myself and I can't wait to go to Molokai. I was going to suggest condos but then I got to the part where you found them. vrbo.com is a great site. I'm jealous!

3:46 PM  
Anonymous Sara said...

I went to Molokai three years ago, and I have to admit that I found it highly disappointing. I think when they call it the Most Hawaiian Isle, they actually mean Isle Where Tourists Are Definitely Not Welcome. The hotels and condos all seemed run-down and strangely deserted, and there were approximately three restaurants on the entire island, two of which were almost constantly out of most of their menu items for the seven nights I was there. There's definitely some gorgeous scenery on the island, and Papuhaku beach is worth a visit, but other than that the island definitely doesn't fit into the usual "Hawaiian Vacation" mold.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Gleemonex said...

Oooh, thanks for the link, shen! Bookmarked it for the next time.

Jen: I think I found this one through vrbo! Will definitely use them again for the other islands -- I'm waaay over those expensive-ass hotels.

Sara: I read a lot of forums and whatnot about Molokai before deciding to go, and there was a healthy sprinkling of people who had a similar experience to yours. But I eventually decided nothing ventured, nothing gained ... I'm not much of a talker-to-strangers myself (in real life, as opposed to online!), and I understand that Molokai natives might not *heart* anyone who represents the possibility of their island getting touristed and overdeveloped. But all I want is to enjoy the weather, the natural beauty, and time off the grid with Mr. Gleemonex, so we're going to try it. ;-)

4:51 PM  
Blogger Jory Dayne said...

Ooh I will back up Jenn in Sacremento, vrbo is a great site -- I'm going back to Kauai in August and staying in a sweet place for $64 a night!

May I recommend that you find yourself a bakery on Molokai as soon as you get there, and pick yourself up some Molokai sweetbread. When I lived on Maui I LIVED for the ferry from Molokai, our friends would always bring over the bread and it was heaven for as lng as it lasted (read: approximately 15 minutes, at the long end).

Also, say it Moe-luh-kuh-ee, and impress the locals.

4:53 PM  
Blogger Gleemonex said...

Jory, you are a man after my own heart -- I hear Kanemitsu is the place to go for that bread, and so I shall.

Ahhhhh, Kauai ... I have to move there, there's no other way to live.

5:02 PM  

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