Girasoli's post about her gecko visitor (http://www.slowtrav.com/blog/girasoli/) reminded me of my first visit to the Aloha State of Hawaii. It was nighttime or early morning to be exact. Arriving home to Kaneohe from a night of 'playing' in Waikiki, I inadvertently kicked something in the front grass while walking from the car to the front door. It jumped, made a low gurgling sound and scared the bejesus out of me. It was one of the largest frogs I had ever seen. Thank goodness we had sympathetic neighbors (in more than one sense) because I couldn't contain a scream. These are the coqui frogs of Hawaii.
About a year later a friend visited from Boston. It was an inopportune time in that two of us had just moved from Kaneohe into a vacant (a/k/a devoid of ANY furniture - very irregular for Hawaii) house in Kailua. The only thing that came with the house was a lanai and a holdout male roommmate. But, this was Hawaii and Joannie's first visit to the Oahu. We hadn't seen her for over a year so it was a great reunion!
Remember my saying this house was devoid of furniture. This means no beds as well. So, being 20-something and full of risks and life, we bunked on the living room floor temporarily until we could get to a swap meet. (Read - poor 20-somethings.) Now, one of the reasons we decided to rent this house was because the entire back wall of the house was an indoor lanai full of lush plants and there were sliding screen doors to separate the rest of the living space from the lanai during rainy season. It also keeps geckos in the lanai area - something we were to be educated about . Well, we kept the doors open for the 'full Hawaii' effect for Joannie. She awoke in the middle of the night screaming and said she felt something walking over her - when we turned on the lights we saw a few geckos. My friend, Denise, leaned over and said quietly, "Whew, I thought it was going to be coackroaches."
In Hawaii, I overcame my fear of creepy and creeping things. Actually, the geckos were cute and quick; the coquis were monstrous and ugly; and the cockroaches - well, what can one say about roaches.