The chances that I was getting on the plane were looking good as I waited for my name to appear on the “cleared” list. My name appeared on the screen and I hopped on before they could give my seat away. For a seven-hour flight it went by pretty fast due in part to the delicious screwdrivers and light snacks. When I arrived it didn’t seem like it was really happening. The airport had open walls and the sweet warm breeze warmed my cold winter bones. I retrieved my duffel bag from baggage claim and went outside to wait for Isaiah Beh and Chris Cabrera. Soon enough, a jeep pulled up and we were on our way to paradise. Into the sweet Hawaiin breeze the car made its way to the local skatepark. Ki’hei Skatepark was fuckin’ fun, with skatelite on everything and a sweet little pool in the back. We spent the remainder of the sunlight skating there. Luckily jet lag hadn’t set in and all of us skated really well. We left to get some beers and food before heading over to Lahaina Skate Co. to meet up with Donovan McNab and Forrest Fleming. Donovan owns the shop and sleeps in the garage. LSC is a solid little shop with super good vibes. We all hung out before we split to get back to home base. Isaiah had to work in the morning so we peaced. My bed for the night was a hammock about 6 feet up and above another bed. Best night of sleep ever.
In the morning I walked around before Isaiah got up and took some Polaroids. Dillon Dorsey called and said he was going to show me around. We made coffee and watched Random Lurkerz III before heading out. Isaiah didn’t have to work until later so we went skating at the Wicky Wash and also a ditch that had been recently cemented and made ready to skate. After skating for an hour and a half, Isaiah was off to work. Dillon drove me around the rest of the day showing me many sick spots and also his home. At the first spot there were some benches and a ton of flatground in-between. We got kicked out after five minutes and then headed down the stretch-way towards the beach where we encountered a white ledge. Perfect height and tucked into the trees, this ledge was “crip” besides the foot traffic of beach goers. We skated there for a while and decided to hop in the car and see more of the island.
We picked up some hitchhikers from Canada and they smoked us out on the way to pick up Isaiah. I called Donovan and we decided to go skate Wicky Wash. We skated there for the remainder of the day, packed up and went to get grub. After eating we went back to the shop and drank some brewskies, while watching the Listen Skateboards video, Viajeros Locos. When the video was over we headed to the bar where Chris’s band, I Chalice, was playing. I thoroughly enjoyed the live reggae and vibes. Many shenanigans happened that night. After walking up the huge hill to Jared and Isaiah’s we jammed out on the guitar before hitting the hammock.
All I remember about day three is that we skated and ended up back at the house while the rest of the world slept. That’s pretty much what we did the whole time. Skate and cruise and then skate some more.
On Superbowl Sunday we built a little manual pad in the back of LSC to skate some more. Everybody learned new tricks and enjoyed the sketchy setup. On Monday we went skating again and then cliff jumped near the beach. After we dried off and got kicked out of the hotel hot tub, Dillon took his roommate Andre home and we met up with another friend. 40 oz. later we were at the beach to skate, but only for a second because the VX2000 got dropped and no filming was possible. We took it to a camera store but it wasn’t getting fixed. Instead of worrying about it we stopped off at the bar for a few drinks next to the ocean.
The next few days went fast. We went to the harbor to skate and got hassled by a tourist company. Eric Salawich was yelling at this one lady who assaulted Isaiah. We bailed before it got hectic. On our way out we saw a police car with full roar sirens heading towards the incident. We hid out at Mulligan’s and got a drink while things cooled down before returning to Chris’s ride.
The next day everyone had to work so I took pictures. I grabbed a few rolls of film, got some coffee and then went to the shop to start construction of a box. When I got to the shop, Forrest was watching skate videos. Chris called and said that he was heading over to the other side of the island for the first annual Reggae on the River festival. He was taking me with. The music was amazing as was the scenery. It was cloudy and looked like a Japanese rainforest, complete with Buddhist sculptures. We stayed there for most of the day before heading back to the westside to skate. We skated until dark and then partied the night away. I’m pretty sure someone slipped something in my drink when I went out to smoke because when I was walking home I felt like I was on acid. It was a great experience.
Then it was morning. We went to Pai’ia to skate and also to go into the mountains to see the river where warriors had fallen to their deaths centuries ago. Everybody was tired from the night before and were lagging. The view was amazing as we headed to the other side of the island; whales, landscapes, sun––all creating a wonderful feeling as we traveled. We warmed up at the local park, but ended up staying because it had so much random stuff to skate. After Chris landed his bigflip we went into the mountains to see the river and to take a swim to cool off from the incredible heat. The water was just the right temperature, cold but refreshing. Everybody meandered back down the trail and we hopped in the jeep and went to skate some more. The school was a bust so the next choice was obvious: the courthouse. Everybody went to work on the spot. Eric was shooting photos, Isaiah (due to rolling his ankle at the park) filmed and Donovan, Forrest, Chris and I skated. Manuals and wallies were flying all over and we were totally satisfied with the session. We got some beers for the drive home and took off into the sun.
Monday was a lazy day. Everybody was tired or hurt and didn’t know quite what to do. I met up with Chris and Forrest to skate before Forrest had work. Once again the training grounds of Wicky Wash was the obvious choice. It was great and everyone landed something, but it was really hot and it was time to go before drying up from dehydration.
The next few days were a blurry mess of fun, just riding the wave. I took photos during most of the day, skated and then took some more. Photos are beyond spectral: without words they can show you a feeling.
We went camping on the other side of the island in Ha’na which is only 40 miles away but the road is narrow and curved it takes three hours to navigate. Isaiah and I rode in the back of the truck looking backwards. I felt drunk. Isaiah said that everything looked like it was moving. It was, and there was nothing we could do to shake it off except jump off some cliffs and get even drunker, the old fashion way. The coast in Ha’na is dense with bamboo forests, papaya and avocado trees. We stayed there for almost two days, hiking and swimming, and then returned to the westside to get back to our skateboards and daily life.
Everyone was tired from camping, but Dillon managed to harass some guy in a BMW and the cops got called. The cops in Lahaina aren’t down with skateboarders and will take your boards and ticket you if you aren’t careful. Luckily Dillon went to get some food and missed the fuzz by a few seconds. After the smoke cleared we went skating and it was great fun for all.
The time blew by fast and before I knew it, it was already time to pack up and head home. The last day was one of the most memorable. We hung out, got stuff done, saw new things, skated (of course) and then topped it all off with a BBQ at Bradley and Adam’s with beer, food and more good times. I almost missed the flight back to Utah because of unexpected road construction and all the security and customs checkpoints in the airport: maybe it was a sign I should have stayed …