I was on duty for less that 1/2 hour when I got my first fare. Wailea to OGG.
YIPPEE! And our phone was working. I was a very happy camper.
When I checked back into Kihei, I am dispatched to a condo in far south Kihei. 2 more people headed off the island. $7 less on the meter than the first fare but I was definitely scraping the underside of the $100 mark on the meter. And it was just 9p.
The passngers on these 2 fares were disappointed about the weather but not discouraged about a return visit. The first ride were from Vancouver, BC, Canada. They are used to rain, albeit not that much at one time, and commented that at home the big difference is that the rain is cold. Very cold. Since this moisture is being sucked up from the equator's Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), its extremely warm. Our temps haven't been higher than 76 F nor lower than 73 F. While feeling "cool" to us residents, the tourists love its warmth. The folks on the second ride were from The New Hampshire/Massachuchetts border and were happy it wasn't snow. Our storm's total inches would have been more than 20 feet of that cold white crap in their part of the world. Thats about 5 feet higher than the average US home.
The rest of my night was moving drunks from point A to point B. Except for my one dog-watch fare, they were all tourists. Eager for some form of excitement after being imprisoned in their dark condos and hotel rooms. Very few residents were on the party scene. Might be saving money to replace all the perishable foodstuff lost due to the power failure. I lost milk, mayo,veggies ice cream and some meatloaf & smashed potatoes.
Not one fare was obnoxious or overly intoxicated.
We have just 2 more weeks until the peak holiday period. Not that I am counting or anything. Like hell I am not! LOL!
10 fares / 115 miles / 4th quarter $100 bracket
STORM OF 2007
Thats what the statewide media is calling it.
We have three supermarkets in Kihei. Star Market had a generator and only lost their frozen goods. All refrigerated products were good. Safeway's generator failed to activate and couldn't be started. Lost everything requiring temperture control. I don't know how FoodLand made out. I could see their POS terminal screens were illuminated every time I went by. So they had some type of generator in operation, to what degree is unknown.
Thumbs down to our power company (MECO) for sloppy emergency preparedness. The poles that failed should have been of a type and strength to withstand gale force winds. We are in a hurricane zone and thus I wonder how many failures there would have been if it had been a hurricane. The bean counters who run the place have cost Mau'i millions of dollars in direct loss and possibly billions in future revenues. Thanks, guys.
All the resorts and hotels have various auxillary power systems. However, putting some of them in a coffer type box with inadequate drainage caused 2 of one resort's multiple generators to get flooded. Oops.
There were no reported incidents of "price gouging" anywhere. A lot of other places in America couldn't claim that in similar situations.
As far as I know, there weren't any fatalities related to the storm. Thats good news.
This was the strongest storm to impact Mau'i since its last hurricane, circa 1873.
Our county and the state should start lokking at some major road improvements. In thirty years, due to global warming, the Pacific is going to be a few feet higher. Much of coastal Kihei. especially South Kihei Road, is only a couple of feet above sea level. Likewise with SR-31, which is the only connection that west Mau'i has to the rest of the island. In 100 years the sea will have risen 5-7 feet. Maybe more if it becomes a runaway heating of the earth, as some predict.
Kudos to all the public and private emergency crews. They did a fantastic job. Mahalo!
It was eerie driving around in the gloom of a cloudy moonless night. If I looked to the north, I could see the glow of the lights in Kahului and Wailku against the rain clouds. Looking south was pitch black. Which seemed to suck the light out of ONE-NINE's headlamps. Creating stars on the roadway from the lane reflectors in the inky ebony. I could sense what the island was like before the arrival of man and fathom the depth of a truly dark night.
***Have a great weekend everybody. Lets get together again tomorrow.
THE PICTURE GALLERY
"Let's all be careful out there!"