January 3, 2019. It was the end of a memorable stay at grandma’s house on Maui. My husband, daughter, and I didn’t want to leave. But there we were, driving to the airport to return our rental car and head back to the mainland. One last stop at the gas station to fill up the tank, and then we’d be on our way.
The self-serve Costco gas station in Kahului, being conveniently located just outside of the airport, was the obvious place to stop. Apparently, everyone thought so too, judging from the length of the lines snaking across the station. Still, we queued up, hoping that our line would move swiftly given that there were two pumps ahead so that two cars could gas up at the same time. We weren’t late for our flight, but we weren’t early either.
But we waited and waited. As we inched closer to the pumps, my husband could see that there was an open pump ahead. And no one was taking it! He exclaimed, “Why isn’t the next car in line pulling up to the open pump?!!!!!
That’s when I started paying attention to the other lines. The same thing was happening across the gas station - even if one of the two pump were free, the entire line would wait until both cars were finished pumping before moving up two at a time!
We were befuddled. We’d never seen such a thing. At home, we’d pull up to any open pump, even if it’s in front of a car still pumping. The pump is open after all.
Was this a custom unique to Hawaii? We weren’t sure. We just watched in awe.
And I got to thinking, THIS is why I love my home state. Where everyone is family and you treat them as such. Where time isn’t rushed. Where what will be, will be. It was a perfectly timed reminder following the chaos of the holidays and as we started the year ahead.
So if you find yourself in a long line or stopped at a red light, consider taking advantage of that moment to take a deep breath, recenter and reflect on the things that you’re grateful for.
And, yes, we ended up making our flight with time to spare.