Maui receives so many commendations from national travel publications that one can become a bit jaded and begin to take the praise for granted.
That would be a mistake because reading these laudatory pieces should remind those of us who live here just how lucky we are.
The latest bit of praise lavished on Maui came in the magazine Coastal Living. In its 15th anniversary issue, the publication ranked Lahaina in its top 15 "Happiest Seaside Towns" in the United States. Lahaina came in 10th in the survey.
To be honest, our first reaction was, "No way, there can't be any happier place than Lahaina." But, then again, we might be a bit prejudiced.
The magazine said of Lahaina, "Its banyan trees add a courtly air to the downtown, and its brightly colored Front Street, busy with shops and galleries, keeps things lively. Lahaina has nearly perfect air quality, and when you add its dry, sunny climate in a tropical paradise, that makes life pretty ideal."
To that we'd add it has fabulous restaurants with everything from Pacific Rim cuisine to fun family fare. Of course, there is also world-class entertainment ranging from 'Ulalena to Warren & Annabelle's to Old Lahaina Luau.
Now, we know it can be argued that those things are mostly for visitors. But, by golly, they are available year-round for us residents, too. And that makes for a very happy environment. It also makes for pretty impressive (and easy) entertaining when we have houseguests.
So we'd congratulate Lahaina on this last commendation. Even those of us who live on other parts of the island realize that Lahaina is one of the happiest places on Earth.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.