The late August summer day was planned and not so different than any other day. The morning sun was bright, the air moist and crisp, the ground wet, but drying; common Kula weather on the island of Maui.
Some trees needed to be trimmed as they had overgrown their space. There was one that had drooped its branches completely around an outside workshop. Another had reached long and far and was rattling the roof of the two story home. Another, aways from the home, provided shade for a couple dogs. Some of its branches were trying to pet them.
The owner met us on site and explained her needs and what was to be done … and then she offered us coffee. Hmmmm… Wow, wonderful, huh … this was a surprise. A welcome surprise.
She made a fresh pot for us and would hand deliver each cup before we started our climbs and before she would leave for work.
Our tree work progressed well. All the trees, trimmed up. The workshop would see the sun and the home would no longer be in rattling distance. And while the dogs may have enjoyed a back scratch or two, they enjoyed the new space and airy feel of the higher canopy, still providing ample shade.
As the morning moved on, the severed limbs and foliage would be gathered up and ready to chip. The owner would return and be pleased with the haircuts and overall it was a good day until the owner queried me.
“Would you all like me to make you lunch?”
What? Lunch? Is she serious? There were six of us, each burning several hundred calories an hour, getting hungrier by the minute and she wanted to feed us? Was this even a question? I did not even query the others.
“Yes! Wow! That would be wonderful!”
“Okay then.”, she said, and returned into her home. I went to inform the others of the rather out of the ordinary situation at hand.
“The owner wants to provide us lunch and will call us when ready.”
As my sentence sunk in, work stopped momentarily. Most had no words to my announcement, while some, still hanging from trees had really big smiles.
She would later come out and give us a five minute notice.
“Lunch will be ready soon!”
And then as some of us were finishing up cutting and hauling, a lunch bell rang. We stopped what we were doing and headed to the back deck. As she saw us convene, we were told to wash our hands. We found out later that she had five boys, so was well aware of the requirements to get us all ready and proper for the dinner table.
Our good day turned into a “Great Day”. There on the table, were several plates of meat, a very large salad, jasmine rice, lemonade and powdered cookies for dessert. We all sat down around this feast, were very grateful and devoured most of what was before us, alternating smiles with chewing faces. The dogs were old and did not get wind nor waft of the chicken or steak, otherwise they would have been there too. I suspect however, they may have had their fill before, spoiled beyond spoiled by the lady of the home.
Conversations were great with laughs and stories. Our bellies were filled, the tall pitcher of lemonade nearly spent as we shared a meal together and got to know a new friend, feel the warmth of her home, the kind woofing of her dogs and realized that we were in Kula Heaven after all.