Humor Non-Fiction posted March 9, 2017

This work has reached the exceptional level
What's black & blue and sports a concussion? Not Brunhilda!

Mar-Bear Versus the Volcano Pt 1

by Mary Wakeford

Brunhilda is my snarky inner voice. She often inserts herself into my writing. Bruni can be a real crank, but she never disappoints with her straightforward opinions or hilarious take on situations that arise. Bruni demanded a lead voice in this story, and wants to start it with a riddle-What's black and blue and flies a two-wheeler airborne?
RogMan and I have had the blessing of visiting Hawaii three times in our four-plus decades together. On this trip, we enjoyed the company of our daughters and the in-laws.

Our son-in-law's dad could be a professional planner. He packs as much into a 24-hour period as humanly possible. A month before we touched down, our Maui itinerary was filled with action-packed adventures. A few  with start times prior to the sun waking up.

Brunhilda, doesn't do pre-dawn well under even the best of circumstances.
One planned activity resulted in a member of our party being launched into oblivion prior to smashing into concrete from the 1940's. They don't make concrete like they used to.

Brunhilda just snickered while administering her thumb and index finger to my forehead--it's the universal symbol for L.O.S.E.R.  She deducted points on my landing for nearly causing her brain damage.
When the option of paying $150 bucks per person to wake up in darkness to bicycle 10,023 feet down a volcano, a family meeting of three was called to determine willing participants. Brunhilda was adamant about taking a pass on the bike adventure.
  • Swimming with dolphins-check
  • Horseback riding-check
  • Magic dinner show-check
  • Ukulele lessons-questionable, but check
  • Commandeering a banana seat between two wheels outfitted with disc brakes the size of Texas, twenty-six miles down a volcano sporting a 6% grade and lots of one-eighty degree turns while competing with drivers behind the wheel of unfamiliar rental cars--NO FOOOOOOKING WAY!   
RogMan, an enthusiastic rider twice biked from Tucson to Phoenix for a cancer fundraiser, was all in.
I was all out. Brunhilda second'd and third'd my nay-nay.

We forgot to invite daughter #2 to the meeting, so signed her up figuring she'd love it as much as her older sister, Katie--a veteran downhill racer. Chaaaa-Chiiing!  We forked over the $300 via a credit card so Emily and her dad could experience the thrill of volcanic downhill barrel-racing one month prior to our scheduled arrival on the island.

Then we promptly forgot to mention the invested gift of fun wheels being added to daughter #2's scheduled events.
We also paid to zoom across the Pacific Ocean atop a rubber boat escorted by spinner dolphins through their habitat of crisp turquoise water and snorkel among the coral reefs. Daughter #2 is a horse freak, so we dropped another couple hundred bucks for a guided horseback ride through the Maui mountains. My horse was gifted with double-wide sidewalls, zero shock absorbers, and thankfully, zero bucks.

I resembled the guy in first position of Village People performing Y.M.C.A. after de-horsing. My "Y" just happened to be upside down. I wasn't sure my hips would ever regain consciousness and straighten out as I struggled to the car on bowed legs one could have driven a clown car through.

Brunhilda sputtered something about being bounced so hard during the trots that my chest kept bitch-slapping her in the face. She suggested next time I ride a horse, I should strap those babies down with duct tape. I reminded her we tried that once--it took rubbing alcohol and vodka swabs to remove the adhesive from my flesh weeks following my son's wedding. 
We ended our time in paradise with a dinner/magic show our last night on the island. My son-in-law was selected to go on stage and assist in cutting a woman in half.

The woman happened to be the magician's wife.  She was clad in a revealing sequined nearly nothing outfit. The dazzling duo were easily in their seventies. It didn't appear duct tape was keeping anything in lockdown.

Brunhilda was pretty sure Tanner was going to be framed for a cheap murder vs. a pricey Hawaiian divorce. She'd seen it on Murder, She Wrote once. I drowned Bruni out with a second Mai Tai to keep her from blurting inappropriate comments during the act. The magic show was fantastic, and the magician's wife survived the buzz saw. Angela Lansbury would not be called upon that night.  
Back to my near-fatal ride. If you picked up on the 'my' you scored extra points as a reader. As mentioned, my plan was to spend the day of the nearly Midnight Riders beachside with Janet Evanovich and Stephanie Plum  as Mai Tai's were delivered every hour on the hour, while the party of five pedalled and disc-braked their little asses off on the opposite side of the island.  
On the eve of the two-wheely excursion, our group conversation poolside turned to a discussion about the timing of the wake-up call to allow ample travel time to get to the biker business shack in plenty of time for the pre-sunrise launch. Oh, and the execution of required injury and death releases in the event of ...

It was poolside when Emily learned she was the assigned bike rider and flat-out refused to participate. It was also when we learned she wasn't present at the planning meeting prior to the Chaaaa-Chiiing payment.  
With that revelation, Brunhilda snarked we should have taken roll call, or at least Minutes which would have avoided this 11th hour scramble.  
No amount of persuasion worked to change my daughter's mind. I can't remember if she was of legal age to drink in 2014, but she was definitely on the cusp. Bruni suggested we slip her some wine and revisit the conversation twenty minutes later. I drank the wine instead.

With my goblet poised poolside and three-quarters into a bottle of vino, I proclaimed I would pedal in her stead rather than lose the invested $150. This announcement came after Tanner's mom, and so far the second sensible one in the bunch, turned down the opening slot and fire sale of free.  
Brunhilda was outraged and screamed "WTFooooook happened to our plan to relax beachside with Janet, Stephanie and Mr. TaiMai, Mr. MaiTai, Mr. HighTide, oh whatever the hell his name is?"  She also suggested I quit drinking the wine because it was making her screw up her words. When she got wind of the 4:00 a.m. wake up call, she threatened to launch a migraine.

We made our way back to our room following my wine-induced blurting, "I'll go in her place, because it would kill me to lose that kind of money on a no-show." Brunhilda suggested the ride might just kill us both. She followed up with the suggestion to stock the tiny freezer space in our guest room with frozen peas ahead of time for our "you know what" following that many hours perched atop a banana seat.
More often than not, it's difficult to argue with Bruni-logic.
-To Be Continued.



Caricature created with a phone app called MomentCam
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