I am back in the chaos of University this week. I have to admit, I got lazy! I’m use to spending all day being domestic or just enjoying my own company, but now I am being thrown into the world of reading and taking notes. It sounds easy, but when people start throwing around works like “Marxism” and “Psychoanalytical”, you know you’re going to land up with a headache.
This also means that I am even further behind in my 30 days of blogging! However, there was a ray of light that was offered to me when I received and e-mail from 20sb.net. They were organising a blog swap and all we had to do was enter our details and we would be partnered up with a fellow blogger. From there we had to write about Summer Vacations, channelling the memories we had of adventures we enjoyed.
I had the good fortune of being paired up with Tiffany from runninghutch.com. She has an incredibly motivating blog, one that I know I will be keeping a close eye on in the future and I recommend going over and taking a look at all her other blog posts because it really is colourful, motivating and entertaining! Tiffany has written up a wonderful post for me which I have posted below; she even included some fantastic photos and I hope you all enjoy her story as much as I did. I found myself agreeing with her about a few things, especially the taxi driver part, the bad weather AND problems with eating while travelling. It really is a good read and I’ve provided all her details so you can all head over there and check her out!
As owners of a small family business, my parents weren’t much for big vacations. During the summertime, we’d get one or two long weekends at a lake. We’d spit cherries seeds as far off the shore as we could and I would hopelessly try to skip rocks. And while those trips are cherished memories, the one that truly takes the cake is when the Hutchison family splurged and actually left the country for a “real” get-away vacation.
This trip was a pretty major deal…to us…at the time. Mom and dad were using their 25th anniversary as an excuse to “go big”, and generously decided to take my sister and I with them. We were going to be gone for an entire week! We were leaving the country!! Albeit only next door to Puerta Vallarta, Mexico. We were going to take an AIRPLANE to get there!!! I got TWO NEW SWIMSUITS for the trip!!!! ONE OF THEM WAS A TWO-PIECE!!!!!
Such a family vacation as this we had never seen and would surely never see again. I had never felt the mysterious allure of travel adventure like this before (and I’m sure this is where my love affair with traveling began). The build-up to this trip, the excitement of packing, telling my friends, was all such a novelty.
However, when you take podunk, cow-town folk from the perpetual cloud-cover that is western Oregon, and drop them in all the sun and sweat culture shock of tourist-trap Mexico, you have the makings of a National Lampoon’s Vacation, starting with the Taxi ride to the hotel.
Why is it that, no matter where you go in the world, the Taxi driver that is delivering your family from airport to hotel is going to be THE MOST unsafe driver you’ve ever had the misfortune to buckle in with? I remember enjoying the humid breeze from my window as we buzzed by pedestrians and cyclists…and being a little embarrassed at my mom who was yelling at my dad to yell at the driver to slow the hell down.
Why is it that, no matter where you go in the world, you manage to eat the one thing that your immune system simply can’t handle? Fortunately for me, Montezuma’s revenge was really just more of an upset tummy. My sister and parents, however, were another story. We had come across a wonderful little taco restaurant off the beaten path and it had shade. Sold. We sat, ate and were satisfied. The next day, I sat again…bored in the room while my parents and sister refused to leave the room.
Why is it that, no matter what time of year you travel, you’re bound to get caught in some freak adverse weather conditions? A bit of rain was quickly followed by a flash flood. A nice shopping trip on the streets of Puerta Vallarta quickly turned into a I-hope-my-feet-don’t-get-cut-on-any-floating-debris-as-we-wade-through-the-brown-river dash to the only place open and dry during the afternoon siesta.
Why is it that the moment mom and dad get away for some couple fun, deranged animals attack? Okay, this may not be a thing, but I am so bummed I wasn’t there to see a wounded pelican attack my mom. Well, her purse.
It’s a well-known fact that homeless animals are just as adept at separating tourists from their food as shopkeepers are of their hard earned vacation money. The perpetrator in question was to be a wounded pelican. I have always pictured him with a sling around one wing. As my parents approached, the Pelican eyeballed my mom’s tasty leather purse that was swinging, teasingly, toward him. Steadying his unbalanced bird body, he waited until just the right moment and just the right swing of the purse, and then lunged, with his massive beak gaping wide, hoping to swallow the purse whole before anyone could stop him.
Shrieks of disbelief and terror must have emerged from my poor mother. She says she was shocked to find herself playing tug-of-war with a huge bird. Fortunately, they both came out winners. Mom saved her purse and the pelican was spared what would surely have been a deathly dinner.
While all this may seem unfortunate or freakish, it is out of this vacation that familiar and often-repeated family stories were born. Dad loves to laugh at mom’s quack attack. Mom still complains about that taxi driver. My sister talks about how regretfully tasty those tacos were. And that flash flood always reminds me of my first real encounter with poverty. After the water subsided, we took a bus back to the resort. On that bus we were entertained by two young brothers who sang, for spare change, to the percussion of a plastic comb and an empty, ridged water bottle. The boy that sang had a beautiful voice and I wish I knew the words he sang. I remember being surprised to feel both incredibly lucky and incredibly sad at the same time.
Why is it, that no matter where you go in the world, that place leaves a permanent mark on your life?
Great Story! I’d like to thank Tiffany so much for participating in the blogswap, I really enjoyed her story and I really loved all of her photos. I agree, there is always a holiday or a destination that will always be with you; you feel it in your heart and just the mere mention of the name brings back a flood of memories.