The beautiful thing about working more than usual is getting paid more than usual. After I picked up a few extra days of singing Disney songs, running around Chuck E Cheese, and making dinosaur chicken nuggets (yes they still exsist!), I decided I deserved a damn break. So we hopped on a red-eye to ARUBA! Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take ya! It was beyond bliss. But honestly, I have to be real with y’all. Preventably mistakes were made, and it’d be a shame to keep them to myself, eh? But first, some pictures.
Welcome to Aruba
WHAT WE DID RIGHT IN ARUBA
WE HAD OUR TSA PRE-CHECK IN ORDER
If you haven’t done this yet, what is stopping you? Scared of being in the system? Since I’ve done AmeriCorps and work with children, I’m pretty well documented thus far. Being able to skip the line and not be rushed through security is such a relief. Even better is when it is an international flight, and are able to skip ahead instead of waiting literally hours. If you haven’t been there yet, I pray you never have to endure that round of hell. The process takes 45-90 days, so start meow.
Look at those happy pirates, who didn’t have to wait one single second in security.
WE HAD THE FLIGHT ENTERTAINMENT DOWN PAT
So we spent about 20-24 hours traveling to enjoy 48 hours of vacation. You can’t help if you’re a weekend warrior sometimes. The idea of surviving long flights is not to fill your brain with as much stimulation as possible. Too little stimulation, you hold the chance of feeling groggy or misaligned with the new time zone. Don’t depend on your airline, especially if you’re flying coach. A human can only handle so much Seinfeild. One of the best ways to pass the time while maintaining the mental peace is adult coloring books. It’s even better when you have a partner, because you can take turns. Flying alone? Don’t be shy! Ask someone if your row to join you.
WE WENT SNORKELING ON A SMALLER TRIP
Not only was it one of the easiest and rewarding snorkel trips I’ve been on, it was a booze cruise! The most popular one is called the Jolly Pirates, which is a large pirate ship that takes a ton of people snorkeling for 4-6 hours depending on the package you choose. The group we went with was much smaller, and allowed us plenty of room to roam around. We all had the opportunity to enjoy the catamaran without feeling on top of each other. Big fan of space.
WE WON SOME BETS
Not to be a bad influence, but… if you haven’t gambled at all yet you’re missing out! I’m much more of a wiener (somehow that was literally the most appropriate word I could come up with) than Paulius and wanted to pull out early. *Ignoring all innuendoes.* We broken even on the craps, but the real deal was betting on UNC in the final four. We not only bet the winner, but by how much at half time 🙂 Resorts are a great place to learn how to gamble because it seems that in the U.S. people are much more concerned with getting hustled. Our people knew we were new and didn’t get too upset when I literally threw the dice
WE ATE LOCAL
Even if you don’t care for fish, you will LOVE grouper. It is the lightest, fluffiest, whitest fish in the sea. Perfect for ceviche or grilled for a sandwich. DON’T YOU DARE FORGET BITTERBALLEN. I’ve mentioned my love for this unidentifiable delectable ball of molten lava once or twice, and teh island does it right. Pro tip- crunch that sucka with a fork to release the steam or you WILL regret it.
AND WHAT WE DID WRONG IN ARUBA
We forgot to hydrate.
Granted, this is partially because we bought tickets less than 24 hours before departure. If you’re a new traveler, you may have not realized how downright dehydrate you get while traveling. Instead of tripling our water intake, we drank on the airplane. Although it didn’t effect our trip directly, because it was so short, we were certainly feeling it the days returning.
We didn’t get the right seats.
When you’re traveling as a couple, the best part is being able to cuddle up. However, I thought I would be girlfriend of the year by getting exit row seats- extra leg room right? Wrong, wrong, MFking WRONG! Why? The seats don’t tilt back NOR do the armrests lift. Luckily, we were just ecstatic being next to each other for a few uninterrupted hours. But keep in mind the exit row seats often do NOT recline- killer news for a red-eye flight.
We didn’t wear our team shirts.
No shit, we have these matching dolphin shirts that we wear one travel days. Like two painted dolphins frolicking in the sea with FLORIDA in big letters underneath. Maybe it’s all in our head, but Paulius and I both agree, it seems to make people be a little easier on us. I also have a feeling if we ever were to get separated, the public would have an easy time putting two and two together… Or in our case, one and one?… No laughs? Fine, I’m done here.
We didn’t get Dutch Pancakes.
The story goes, they are fkin delicious on the island. Not to be confused with poffertjes, Dutch pancakes are very large and very thin, and can be savory like ham & cheese or sweet such as apple & cinnamon. This was one of two things that I really thought we would do, but just didn’t get to. Luckily for you though, I did ask around where the best are and the winner is allegedly Linda’s Pancakes.
We saw zero flamingoes.
You might imagine Aruba as a tropical paradise, with flamingo families scattered about. Babies learning to walk, moms and dads curled up in the sun. I’ve got some bad news for you, flamingoes aren’t even native to Aruba. All those pictures you see on Pinterest are from a private island calledRenaissance Island owned by the Renaissance Aruba hotel. Good news is you can pay to have a few hours of frolicking with the adorable birds. Personally, I felt a little silly getting excited to see non-native animals. A cab driver, life-time local and lovely woman, informed me that Bonaire is actually known for flamingos. You learn something new every day.
Have you ever been to Aruba? Did you know flamingos are not native?