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06

Apr
2013

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In Travel

By Lindsey

Self Described Pale Girl Does Caribbean

On 06, Apr 2013 | No Comments | In Travel | By Lindsey

{ blogging on iPhone leads to funny mistakes and pictures posted twice. Fixing it is hard without messing up the whole post. Please forgive }

::

I think I thought if I imported the pictures and put my thoughts about the trip in a blog it would feel distant.

Less than a week ago I went with my best girl friend’s family to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.

It was a last minute invite. Of course, I don’t turn down adventure, regardless of inflated airfare. Hey, they can get away with it. I’d pay a pretty hefty sum to return.

I’d never been tropical. As far south as I’d been was key West. When my high school peers were planning Cancun trips I was scheming my way to Europe. I’d always said – look – a beach is a beach. Heck, I grew up on a beach. ( I hope you aren’t cracking MS coast jokes right now )

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Cue skipping record sounds….
A beach is not a beach.
I’m glad I didn’t join the other 17 year olds for a mindless booze fest because walking into our open air house, through the back pool/hot tub and onto the rocky cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea was a dose of shock, euphoria, and kid-like fascination that grown ups fight hard to get.

For the first time in 10 years I ran into the water and swam. Real swimming where I put my head under water, then floated on my back to the point that sound is blocked and you imagine you are a sea creature. Standing up I saw straight through to my pink toenail polish.

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That connection to true beauty and treat of nature honestly made me emotional. Then I heard Rihanna and some hypnotic club music playing in the distance and remembered I wanted another mojito.

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Back inside you still felt the breeze and heard the wind swaying the palms. The house was essentially two structures. The bedrooms, which were each secured, also had generous balconies and showers that looked over the sea. Often in resort housing or lets say, house hunters international, you see a budget friendly choice of cream tile across the property, cheesy furniture and exposed grout. Not our house. Every detail was planned and selected with care. Hardwoods throughout. Warm smelling cedar shelves in the closets and no Miami Vice borrowed decorations. It was done in such a glamorous yet rustic way that I walked around snapping shots of every corner, serving piece and roof thatching. Throw in some cocktails and I thought I was a photog with Anthony Bordain. It drives Camille, BF, crazy, but I can’t help it. If that’s one of my biggest character flaws I’ll make it.

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The common area was like nothing I’ve seen before, but exactly what a beach house should be – the outside in. It rains, you smell it. You forget your book inside, you run from the pool without opening a door.

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The staff at the resort/our house prepared local meals with fresh produce and meat. Even the pig that the head cook ( I call him a chef ) told me….was just snoozing. The lobster sizzled on the grill and later left us eating in a trance with butter running down our arms and faces. The men on the staff every night walked the grounds and gathered bright flowers and foliage to decorate the dinner table. Hibiscus and bouganvilla mixed with the brightest flowers we couldn’t identify.

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I don’t ever want to forget these things. That’s what travel does. It gives us moments to remember when say, I don’t want to wake up at 2:30 am, getting up to make your own coffee feels laborious or the simple pace is replaced with worry for loved ones and our futures. I am thankful the Breland family treats me as one of their own, not just on this trip, but at Christmas and other times where my family is far away.

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– Full disclosure. Spring vacation 2013 is still happening. As I write, I’m on the train to meet mom in NOLA where tomorrow we will board the Norwegian Star for Mexico, Honduras and Belize. Yes, I know, cruises are selling about as much as hummers right now, but this is a result of me drinking two glasses too much wine and bidding on the cruise at a benefit back in Sept. So, here it goes- bring on fanny packs, overweight bikini wearers, overpriced excursions and cheesy souvenirs. Actually, though, the way I look at it, if cruises are out of my authenticity loving character then going on a cruise is actually authentic and adventurous for me. It’s all about spin, baby.

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