Eleven years ago, my youngest son came home from school the first day back after Christmas and asked if we could go to Hawaii over mid-winter break. Neither my wife nor I had ever had much interest in going to the 50th state, in part because everyone in the northwest who doesn't ski goes there. But it turned out that I could get tickets and a place to stay on Maui. I still don't know how I pulled that off: Getting to Hawaii from Seattle during midwinter break takes the same degree of advance planning as going to Yellowstone in the summer.
Well, we had a great time, and I've been going there off and on ever since. And for me, February is the month to go because that's when the humpbacks migrate to LaHaina Bay to calve. There are so many that you can't help but see them from the beach, from the hotel room, from any boat ride taken. My inner seven-year old comes out, I guess, because they are what I most look forward to.
That, and fresh frozen mangorita from the H'aile M'aile General Store in the part of Maui called Upcountry, near the western slope of the Haleakala volcano. It's not the kind of drink I usually order, but someone talked me into it once and I'm glad they did.
Pictures to follow!