About six months ago, our friends announced that they were having a destination wedding.
“Awesome!” we said.
It was going to take place in Turks and Caicos, they informed us.
“Where in the world is that?” we asked. (It’s right here.)
The date would be the end of April.
“April?!?” we joked. “Why not during January when the weather is crappy?”
(HAHAHHAHAA. It is snowing as I type this — on May 3 — because OF COURSE IT IS.)
So we went, and it was lovely, and I already told Jason I am saving all of my money to go back because it was the best vacation I’ve ever had.
After months and months and months of looking out the windows to see white and gray and brown (accompanied by seething rage whenever I viewed the “spring” weather forecast), I was blown away by our view once we got to the island:
The first day, we toured the resort:
Is this a pawn? A knight? A rook? Who knows?! This is why I play cribbage.
Before the wind picked up in the afternoon, we spent our mornings at the beach:
Please note that I do not normally have cleavage, but I found the perfect swimsuit that makes me feel amazing.
The best part of the trip was swimming in the ocean with Jason and a few friends. All of a sudden, I heard a noise like someone flipping book pages. I turned around, and saw dozens of tiny, silver fish skipping across the surface of the water. So cool.
I went snorkeling twice. Jason had never snorkeled before, so I gave him a quickie lesson and we clumsily flippered our way past a coral reef. After awhile, we went our separate ways (because I kept inadvertently kicking him and he couldn’t understand my gurgled cries of, “There’s some fish right below us!”). I saw so many fish; the water was so clear, you could see all the way to the bottom.
My favorite was the stoplight parrotfish.
Hello, friend! (Photo from here.)
I followed a couple of parrotfish around the reef for a good 15 minutes, talking to them underwater the entire time (partly because I was so charmed by them and wanted them to like me, and partly because I was hoping my nonstop chatter would keep any sharks or barracudas away, especially since another snorkeler tapped me on the shoulder and said, “There’s a barracuda about 10 feet to your left!” To which I thought, “Then I will be swimming speedily to my right.” Also, word to the wise: If you are snorkeling, please do not tap another person on their shoulder, especially if they are having a weird tingly feeling that they are being stalked by a large, toothy, prehistoric sea creature.)
Tangent: Whenever I go snorkeling, I always manage to give myself a mini panic attack. This time, it happened after I saw a bunch of small fish go barreling past me at full speed. As I briefly wondered where they were going, and what they might’ve been swimming from, my brain helpfully supplied all kinds of gruesome scenes from the film Open Water. And that is when Mr. I Saw A Barracuda decided to tap me on the shoulder. I may still not be completely recovered.
At one point, my mask started to fog up, so I removed it, spit on the goggles and re-adjusted it. When I stuck my head back underwater, three yellowtail snappers were right in front of me. I could’ve touched them if I wanted to (I did not). I waved my hands to shoo them away and they sat there, floating silently and unblinking. That wasn’t creepy AT ALL.
BACK OFF, CREEPERS. (Photo from here.)
When I finally caught up with Jason on shore, he triumphantly told me that he saw a giant stingray with a tail that was at least six feet long. Grah.
In the afternoons, when the wind picked up and the sun became unbearable, we retreated to the pool with some friends:
Not pictured: the 300 strawberry daiquiris I consumed.
The whole vacation was incredibly relaxing. Because we didn’t want to worry about roaming charges, we shut off our phones before we arrived. And it was amazing to not have to worry about anything. We were unreachable! Suck on that, real life! I’m a ghost! My mind was completely, utterly blank. It was lovely.
Surprisingly, even though I grazed at the buffet like a starved wildebeest, I didn’t gain an ounce. I assume it was because I always started with a plate of fresh fruit. My fruit intake seriously increased by 1,057%. (My Mountain Dew intake was zero, but I happily swapped it for those aforementioned strawberry daiquiris.)
Jason even tried some new foods. He discovered that he loves mahi-mahi, which we had at the rehearsal dinner, located at the perfect spot overlooking the ocean:
Please ignore my tan line and focus instead of what my stick-straight hair does when not confronted with temperatures that suck. Slight beachy waves from literally 4 minutes of work and no hair product! I desperately need to live in a warm-weather climate.
The wedding was beautiful. (I won’t post any photos of the bride & groom because it’s not my place, but trust me, they were beautiful as well.)
I highly recommend going on vacation with friends. It worked out well for us, because if Jason wanted to stay out later when I was tired, he could while I went to bed. Win-win.
Oh, yeah: I promised Jason I would nap in this before we left. I didn’t, so now we have to go back. Ha ha, a loophole!