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Just got back from my usual Christmas visit to Ft. Lauderdale. My original plans included visiting the Mai Kai more than once since I was going to be in the area for about a week, but between a few very unexpected family crises and not finding anyone that wanted to go with me (my family and friend that are down there think I'm nuts because I'm a tiki freak.) I only made it to the Mai Kai once (with my sister) the night before I was to return here to Gotham. Once is better than none and it was a great visit. The moment I sat down in the Molokai lounge, I felt like a junkie finally getting a tremendous fix of heroin.
Saw the floor show for the first time which was great, and got a coupla fun facts from one of the Molokai Maidens.
Did you know that:
The maidens have to report their weight each week. Back in the day they actually used to weigh them in!
Also back in the day, if the maidens didn't have black hair they had to wear a dark wig. They also used to work barefoot, now they wear flip-flops.
Towards the back of the bar there is a phone which doesn't work. Apparently they used to use it to call in drink orders. Now I'm told they just use it, to pretend they're talking to the boss when those individuals who've downed a few Zombies start hitting on them (I swear it wasn't me...I'm engaged!!).
Now if you know any history of the Mai Kai you have probably seen the pictures of the old surfboard bar (see page 139 in Book of Tiki). I was told by the lady in the giftshop, who has been working there for 20 years, that the surfboard bar was actually located where the gift shop is now. She also filled me in on a few other folks there that have put in a few decades of service and are still there now. I can't remember who they are but it was an impressive lot. Also according to the gift shop lady, the hard cover editions of Book of Tiki are now in the collectible zone, which I didn't know. I gotta hard cover copy like a year ago. So all you other hard cover owners...not like I have to tell ya...but don't like remortgage your house with them or lose them in a poker game.
So yeah...mission accomplished. Hoping to get down there again in February or April. 'Til then...
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