We didn't mind that the bathroom was attached to the main house; that was the only part of the Airbnb listing that worried us, and that part of our adventure turned out fine.
But serious, we expected a private bathroom.
The listing describes the glorified outhouse as "~18 steps from the cottage... your private bath during your stay...," yet our hosts had construction workers all day—which we weren't made aware of, mind you; we just woke to the sound of power tools, much like the distant drilling of patients manhandled in a dental office, at 9am—and we shared that outhouse with the workers, no question about it, since the toilet seat was left up.
As regular pee cycles would inevitably have it, I fell in the shared-slash-private toilet.
I know, I know;
I should have checked where my bottom was going first.
Yet I've lived with my husband for two years (albeit we've only been married for a couple weeks), and he has not left that seat up.
So I've gotten used to not checking.
I figured, private bathroom, only the two of us...
I shouldn't have to "lookout!" before I squat.
In addition, even though I messaged the host several hours before arrival (the initial response wasn't very warm; we were reminded the check-in time...?), we were there for two hours before my husband said hello to the host's husband, out on the grass...
And the initial response:
"Didn't know you were here."
We explained we didn't have a car, we Ubered in—okay, I lie; my husband explained that to the host's husband; I had nothing to do with that part; I was inside the cottage, under a blanket, in my Kindle somewhere—then we were offered a drive to the supermarket the following day;
And this was a kind gesture from the host's husband, one we hadn't expected at all.
That kindness soon sour-milked into false hope after my husband left a voicemail the following morning with the host (per her husband's instructions), and that voicemail was never returned.
So my husband waited a few hours, then hiked to the grocery store for sandwiches, which was what we originally planned to do anyway, no hard feelings, eye twitch.
Meanwhile I got to work on my novella, my creative goal for our trip (I always have a creative goal on trips) (it's a regulating tool).
Later that day, after I already felt like I got the hint that we were in the bubble of 3- or 4-star hotel mentality, from a) no warning about construction, b) little warmth on arrival, and c) lack of response to voicemail—and whatever, right?—not every Airbnb can be above-and-beyond, right?—
I messaged, "Hello, When is the construction over?"
Y'know, out of curiosity for when I no longer needed to listen to music through earbuds to avoid the memory of dental drilling, not that I have dental phobia, not that that sound drives me bananas or the construction worker isn't tapping his finger on the button when he's bored to pass the time, that's all just fine and dandy.
We could have rented a car for the two days after our trip to Lanai, of course. We didn't have to Uber.
Yet I'm on the autism spectrum, so I like to do the same thing as a clean-cut, planned routine.
And I'd planned for a week of Ubering; not 3 days of car renting on Maui, 2 days of jeep renting on Lanai, and 2 days of car renting on Maui again (too much paperwork!).
I thought seamless Ubering would be best, and our 2-night stay in Kula? Well, that's when I'd write and read, my husband would hike and play video games, and we'd rest up for our redeye home.
Easy. Mountains. Nature.
That was the entire point of the cottage in the middle of nowhere, for a writer and wanderer couple to kick back and relax.
But because I asked about the construction, I was guilt-tripped for not having a car.
We were described as the "first guests who were 'stuck' without a car," when we didn't consider ourselves stuck at all; staying in, writing, and reading was the plan, and I've never stayed at somewhere before that found my lack of a vehicle offensive.
Forgive me if I sound too Millennial, but the Uber option was seamless, easier, and cheaper.
Which brings me to the last part of the listing that felt inaccurate: "a restful place."
We were treated ill for choosing to use Uber instead of renting a vehicle; and even if you put the ill manner and false hope aside, we had construction, without prior knowledge, 9am to 5pm; then yard work at 6pm;
And this is all happening in a cottage with no curtains on an entire west-facing wall, on our honeymoon—and yes, people were in eyesight—which means we were in eyesight of them, highlighted by sunset rays, a tourist exhibit display.
There was no visual privacy, no audible privacy, and no private bath, and that meant we got on the redeye with 2-3 hours of sleep a night pocketed from our last two days on Maui, and I had a honeymoon-end memory of landing in a toilet bowl.
I wouldn't return to this particular Airbnb. If you just want a bed for 7pm-9am, and don't otherwise mind noise or shared quarters, and you like to get fully dressed before you head to the potty because people will definitely see you skipping along to the outhouse, this would be a better listing for you.
First draft: August '18.
Word count: 979.
Photograph: Star Tours @ Hyatt Regency, couples gazing option; iPhone 8S capturing the moon through polarized lens; then iPhone image altered with PicsArt app (Effects > Tiny Planet).
YOU ARE READING
Story is Second NatureNon-Fiction
I crumb stories all over the Internet. But as the 21st-century frontier expands, I fear losing my cookie trail. So I'm gathering two pieces per platform, in search of the story beneath.