Friday, July 19, 2019

Kauai Day #4: The Ethics of Rum, a Boat Tour of the Na Pali Coast, and How Many Dramamine Did I Take?

Ummm... four, probably. Four-ish. At least four, but definitely no more than five.

This year's overdose of Dramamine was sponsored by a boat trip up the Na Pali Coast. Will, especially, had been eager to see the Na Pali Coast, which you really can only see--especially when the trails through it are closed, as they were when we visited--by air or ocean, and she, especially, was thrilled when the grandparents organized this trip. Syd was hoping to see dolphins and sea turtles. Will was excited about snorkeling off the boat.

But first: rum tasting!

It hadn't occurred to me that my 13- and 14-year-old children would have Opinions about rum, but I don't know why it hadn't, because I'm the one who taught them about rum's importance to the Triangular Trade route that enabled humans to enslave other humans and force them to grow sugarcane.

Would I have gotten the same pushback if I'd taken them to a molasses factory? Probably, sigh...

Anyway, I eventually had to get Matt to back me up about the fact that we don't currently have to boycott rum. I don't think the kids were completely satisfied--I mean, who doesn't love a good boycott?!?--but they did finally let me go to my rum tasting in peace, AND they found me a little stand of sugarcane to look at when I was done:

A little bit of rum and two Dramamines later, and we were all on a boat, headed up the Na Pali Coast:

It didn't take long for Syd's dream to come true!

You can see where waterfalls used to flow:

As well as arches and tunnels and caves, some of which you can enter:

My pictures of this kid are cracking me up--she loved the sightseeing as much as I did!

This is cool: off in the distance, on the left side of the photo, you can see the private island Ni-ihau, 42 miles away. To the right is Lehua, a tiny island that's a bird sanctuary:

The boat trip included time for snorkeling. I had Will bring the magnifying goggles that her grandparents had rented her, and she combined it with the tour's provided snorkeling equipment and was off, as usual, like a shot. This is the only photo that I managed to get of her, the only time she stayed still long enough for me to focus:

Here's Matt:

And here's Syd, who stayed close enough to the boat that I could actually see her, yay!

Can you see the giant fish that she's following?

And more giant fish!

Her grandfather may or may not have been chumming the water with bits of his sandwich, ahem...

Here, on the other hand, is someone who is appalled at the very idea of using bits of her precious sandwich as fish bait. The very idea!

Considering that we were two hours into the trip before I decided that I definitely wasn't going to get seasick, I'm feeling like I stopped at a mere four Dramamine, which is just barely over the maximum amount of Dramamine that a reasonable person should take--I mean, that's just one Dramamine an hour, hardly the most irresponsible thing that I did in June. Still, it was enough to allow me to drowse comfortably all the way back to shore, nodding against Will's shoulder but still awake enough to hear a tourist behind me ask the tour guide operator where a good place to get shave ice would be.

The tour guide had been super personable the entire trip so far, so I was taken aback and woke up a little to hear him flatly reply, "I don't know."

The tourist was probably taken aback a little, as well, because he laughingly said, "What kind of tour guide are you, then?"

And THEN, you guys, the tour guide started in on this whole giant spiel about how sugar is poison and he doesn't eat poison and he refuses to recommend poison to anybody else, especially with the number of obese people now (I opened my eyes just a bit to ascertain that yep, the tourist was for sure going to be offended by that one), and blah blah blah sugar is poison blah blah blah guess how old he is you can't tell can you because he never eats sugar blah blah blah he always speaks his mind blah.


Honestly, all he had to say was The Wishing Well. The correct answer was The Wishing Well. 

It was such an odd exchange that you might think that I had dreamt it, except that later I brought it up to Matt, and HE HEARD IT, TOO!!!

Also, Matt does the BEST impersonation of the tour guide on a sugar is poison rant, and if he really gets into it, he'll add in a whole part about how he only eats a slurry made of fish parts and salt water and gets 18+ hours of shirtless exercise a day, etc.

I have just this second realized what a missed opportunity I had to ask the tour guide his opinions about the ethics of sugarcane production and the rum industry. Dang it!

No comments: