There is an awful lot to be said for taking a quick vacation in January to a warmer climate. Especially when you know that at the end of your travels you will link up with your divine daughter whom you haven’t seen for some time.

That was me last week. A “girl’s week,” with me, my darling madam and our good friend, the Beckster, who, having lived there, was a great tour guide. In Hawaii. In January.

Jealous yet? Well you have good reason to be. The girls had met up the week before with a goodly amount of island hopping, leaving the last week to be on the North Shore of Oahu for the three of us to wallow in the Pacific, to squidge sand between the toes, and to eat, drink and be merry.

The problem with going to a warmer climate means you have to travel in a cold climate to get there. And while you might leave from a non-snowy airport heading for another non-snowy airport to get to the final non-snowy airport to finally jump on the plane which is going to the aforementioned warm airport, you run the risk of being skittled time-wise because of a flight being held up getting to you because it was snow or iced-in in the originating airport.

Thankfully I only hit full-tilt-panic-mode in Phoenix (a non-snowy airport) when we arrived from Kansas City 20 minutes late because of a SNAFU in the not-so welcoming airport. This plane, naturally, arrived at gate A943, and the connecting flight to Hawaii was to leave 40 minutes later from gate B8,527.

This required me to – almost – run. Let me tell you, this particular duck does not run and does not like to sweat. I had to do both, and by the time I got to gate B32, it was obvious that I was about to curl up in a ball in a corner, weep quietly and just give up the idea of making my flight.

Fortunately, at that point a very kind and I think soon to be sainted airport employee espied a gray haired, sweating, totally out of shape old bag – i.e. me – looking by now totally panicked, so he zoomed up with a wheelchair and told me to hop on. Off he sped, I think running over the odd small child, and deposited me at the gate as boarding was in play.

If I had missed that flight, the blancmange was about to hit the fan.

But make it I did, and there ensued a glorious week of temperatures in the high 70s, fresh seafood, good wine, great coffee, more pineapples than you can shake a stick at, and of course good company. We stayed at an Airbnb whose owners provided us with farm-fresh, straight from under the chicken eggs, and our very own geckos in the garden.

But best of all, my time away was made splendiferous by my daughter of whom I am outrageously proud and love beyond speech. Here was my little gap-toothed sweetie going to school, and now here she is – an all grown up, confident, stunning woman.

Gee I did well.


-- Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at