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You Take The Good, You Take The Bad, You Take Em Both & There You Have…The Top 10 Vacation Facts Of Life

 COMPLETE SET OF PHOTOS CAN BE FOUND HERE!

 

Okay. So. Yeah. As for my vacation? Let’s just say it was interesting. Yes, it was beautiful, when we were on the beach. In the hotel room? Not. So. Much. Yes the food was good…but only provided we were able to secure a reservation at one of the ‘specialty restaurants’. (That was not as easy as it sounds.)

 

I am very proud of the 5 of usfor making ‘The Best’ out of what could have been an awful situation.


Since I have one too many photos, and one too many stories about the Vacation, it would take at least 45 posts to give you the full story. And I am not going to subject ya’ll to incessant vacation postings, consisting of mainly ‘inside jokes’. And, I will be busying myself for the next few weeks creating one of my famous video/movie montages for your viewing pleasure. It’s going to take a while for me to find the time required to construct, complete with titles, transitions and special effects.

 

In the meantime, here are my: Top 10 Vacation Facts


1.
Never go to a resort in a foreign country, unless you can verify before hand that at least ONE employee speaks the same language as you do.

 

[Had we known this fact, we could have easily packed a translator dictionary. Or, simply gone to Florida. For a whole lot less money.]

2. It costs $10.00 per person to enter the Dominican Republic. Cash. Only.

[Yet another fact that would have been handy before we arrived at our destination. With only Credit Cards.]

3. You might consider canceling your trip if you bought the ‘Insurance’ and you were notified a mere 6 days prior to leaving that your hotel accommodations have been suddenly changed, to a place you cant even research online.

[That alone should have been my first clue we were about to ‘rough it’.]

4. SPF 85 works very well on children. That is, as long as you apply the SPF 85 to their skin, Every 15 Seconds. Also, SPF + Sand + Epidermis = Glued on forever, maybe longer.

[Lesson Learnt.]

5. Research The Water Pressure/Shower Situation. Seriously? Yes. Gather an extensive, informative, background pertaining to the bathroom facilities.

[Because when you are traveling to a far away place, full of people who misconstrue every word that comes out of your mouth, it makes for a rather challenging conversation to express why you are ‘concerned’ that the metal handle which belongs In The Shower, has come off and is now In The Palm Of Your Hands making showering all together impossible.]

That being said…

6. If you are lucky enough to be traveling with another party, be smart. Be sure to have adjoining rooms. This way, you can use their shower to try and remove the glued on – SFP – sand – epidermis mixture that is forever stuck in-between your toes.

7. Doritos are an expensive commodity in the D.R. They sell for $18.00 American Dollars – per bag.

[We spent at least $300.00 (each visit) at the Mini-Market gathering “American Food” for our children to eat. It was like our own version of Super Market Sweep. But THIS FACE says it was worth every penny.]

8. There is a REASON the bus which transports you from the Airport to your Resort has black covers hanging to cover the window.

(It is my suggestion, to leave those curtains tightly closed. Unless of course you like seeing small children begging on the dirt roads.)

9.
The definition of ‘Top Shelf Alcohol’ and the prospect of obtaining any ‘Top Shelf Alcohol’ is non-existent in the Barceló Hotel.

10.
When Kayaking On The Ocean Do Not Wear A Dress. (You’ll find out exactly why, in the video version of this tale.)

The Final & Bonus Fact

* The term ‘Tropical Storm’ should not be taken lightly.

It rained so hard, so fast, that the cobblestone pathways were flooded in sheer seconds. The roads looked like the canals in Venice Italy. It would be wise to have a raft, or any flotation device readily available.

And that’s all I have to say about my vacation…

For now!

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  • well… i guess we are chalking that one up to experience… who knew.. now we do… i doubt i would have made plans to go to the dominican republic,, knowing all to many dominicans that have migrated to florida and all,, but now that i have read this,, i know for a fact if i am ever to take a “luxury” vacation,, it will not be to the D.R……

  • Meleah

    Paisley:
    Good Call!

    The actaul island was nice…however our hotel and the employees that worked in the hotel were not what you’d call ‘friendly’.

  • Ingrid

    Is this where you stayed?

    http://www.expedia.com/pub/agent.dll?&&qscr=dspv&htid=896695&crti=7&hotel-reviews&zz=1215093154531&

    Unfortunately, I am not surprised by your experience. The Dominican Republic is a country where there is rampant poverty mixed with a proliferation of all-included resorts.

  • Meleah

    Ingrid:

    (how come your blog isn’t linked?)

    YES! OMFG!

    That IS where we stayed, but that review of the food was waaaaaaaaaaay off!

    Like I said, as long as we were on the beach and eating doritos, it was nice. But that Hotel? Will haunt me with nighmares for the rest of my life!!

  • the best friend

    Goodness Gracious! I love all the stories, cant wait for the Video. You falling out of the kayak was priceless. Tiffany laughing at you falling out of the Kayak KILLS me. The Dorito Face…YES its hysterical. I highly doubt YOU and all of US can wait til NOVEMBER for the video…so giddy-up on that sister.

  • i’m trying to tell you cash is king. credit cards are the devil and good for nothing. 🙂 they know it. lol

    It costs $10.00 per person to enter the Dominican Republic. Cash. Only.
    [Yet another fact that would have been handy before we arrived at our destination. With only Credit Cards.]

    enjoyed the pictures and look forward to the video.

  • CBG

    ALL THE PICTURES AND VIDEOS WHERE HYSTERICAL. AND HEARING THE TWO OF YOU GO ON AND ON ABOUT ALL THE GREAT TIMES YOU HAD TOGETHER WAS PRICLESS !!

  • Meleah

    Jen:
    You know I need a whole new LaCie drive just to make the Vacation Video.

    But I promise the Kayacking scene where I eat DIRT and land On My Face, will be included.

    Valerie:
    Hey sweety. We had no idea we needed straight CASH ONLY. However my debit card worked at the Mini-Market!

    Danny CBG:
    Dood. That was off the chain. Now you know all about “Passport Face”

  • ah…man that sounds like a very intense set of memories! The bad part is you’re confirming exactly why my husband won’t travel to other countries. I’m not sure that’s a good thing though. I’ve been trying to tell him he’s crazy and it’s worth all the little inconvienences…but hmm…well, was it worth it???

  • cmk

    The thing I worry about the MOST whenever we travel–and so far it has only been the US and Canada–is how well the bathroom facilities will work. I am absolutely ANAL about toilets (no pun intended) and showers and how clean they are and how well they work. I would have had a complete and total meltdown! Glad you survived. 😉

  • this makes me not want to go there!!!

    um, on the shower thing. what if *they* are smart too, and use *your* shower?

    i don’t think i’ve ever gone out of the country without a couple of pieces of local gold in my pocket. i hope you didnt have to offer them payment of *another* kind…

  • jennifer

    Soon there will be a Lacie for every event! We love memories too much.

  • jennifer

    “Certain Bald Guys” icon is hilarious by the way.

  • I can’t wait to find out WHY you would wear a dress while kayaking!

  • Wow that’s really expensive for a pack of Doritos.
    I never knew there is an SPF 85, did it really exist?

    Now I so don’t want to go there. Florida is cheaper, better, and cleaner…

  • A friend of mine was there recently as well. I SAW pictures of one of those Tropical Storms… absolutely amazing.
    You went kayaking in a dress? LOL… there has to be a great story behind that!

  • Meleah

    Heather:
    Yes. It was worth it. I had some of the best times with my son during that vacation. I wouldn’t go there again, but it was certainly worth it.

    CMK:
    I totally FREAKED out. Freaked Out. Completely. But, the only way we could UPGRADE to a better room, was to pay 15 per night per person extra 15 x 5 = 75 x 7 = $525.00 EXTRA Dollars. To have a room with a decent shower. I took the best shower of my life when i came home!!

    HollyDolly:
    Yeah, do not go to that Hotel. The water and the beach was amazing, but stay at a better/nicer Hotel.

    Jen:
    CBG’s icon rocks.

    Terri:
    ha ha ha ha ha

    RMH:
    Yep It was SPF 85. And take my advice, go to Florida instead!

    Dawn:
    Oh just wait till you see that on video

  • I’m sorry that you didn’t have the ideal vacation. On TV today they compared sun tan lotions and “No Ad” 45 was one of the best, and cheapest. Just info for your next trip. ;o)

    It’s the 4th. I thought that I was hearing thunder. It’s fire works. Silly me!

  • Hm…I think I will be employing my D.R. friend if I ever decide to travel there.

  • OMG Meleah,

    The stories I’ve heard in detail from you & Tiff have been priceless! I can’t wait to see the final video production…I know it’s going to be fantastic (even if we have to wait until November!)

    I’m sorry it didn’t go as you planned…that made me sad to hear…but next time you go away I know you’ll make sure it’s perfect!!

  • Fanny

    even with all the hardships ( like no hot sauce) we still laughed the entire time. 7 days with 3 kids & not one argument ……thats love

  • Fanny

    by the way the pigroast rooftop party was the bomb & we have to decide ( rinaldi wants to know) if we are still goin to borgata tomorrow ??

  • I’m going to have you plan all my vacations in the future!

  • A friend of mine got married down in Cabo San Lucas a few years ago. I was really sick and had an alergic reaction to a cold medication I bought over the counter. I was in the beginning stages of anaphylactic shock and racing around the hotel to try and find the hotel doctor. Nobody understood me. Finally someone did and directed me to the other side of the – very big – hotel. With my face the size of a basketball, and my throat the width of a sewing needle, I found the nurse – the doctor was fishing, believe it or not – and she took care of me. Never again.

    Next time just go to the Florida Keys. Seriously, if you time it right, its a terrific time down there.

  • Meleah

    Awake:
    I am not a big SPF person, but we were concerned for the kids. Thats why we bought the most expansive and highest SPF available.

    Silver:
    Yeah, better to have a native in your back pocket.

    Rinaldi:
    ha ha ha ha
    The video will be great!

    Angry Man:
    You are one brave soul!

    Tiff:
    I doubt anyone else would have survived that trip WITHOUT ever having a single argument. That IS love!

    HollyGL:
    Damn Honey! Now that is horrible. I cant even imagine going through that far away from home. Um, yeah, Florida or California are better / safer bets! I dont plan on leaving the country again, unless its to go to ITALY! xxoo

  • Jay

    Yikes!! That sounds bad… and it’s exactly why I refuse to go anywhere where they don’t speak English. I have food allergies, and drug allergies and I have this horror of going through what HollyGL went through, whether with food or drugs. It would be bad enough at home, away – NIGHTMARE!!

    Just not being able to have a shower would drive me nuts, but my Other Half would actually have been on the plane home within a couple of days. He’s a man who likes to stay clean. At all times. LOL!

  • I’ve only been to Florence, but I would return in a HEARTBEAT!! Just lovely.

  • Meleah

    Jay:
    I have food allergies too. I was too scared to eat while n vacation. I must have lost another 15 lbs while in the D.R. because I didn’t eat.

    HollyGL:
    I wish I was in ITALY right about now!
    xxoo
    🙂

  • There is nothing worse than always feeling you have sand between your toes on every day of your holiday. Uuuugh. Despite all the problems, you still make it sound funny. I am still cracking up at the bus windows. Your photos are glorious!

  • Meleah

    Selma:
    And I could not get the sand off. We did manage to have a good time despite the pitfalls!!

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  • Ooooh my goodness!!! LOL! What a vacation indeed! It sounds like you had an EXTREMELY eventful time, that will provide dinner party anicdotes for the next 10 years. It is times like that where you are truly glad to have a good friend with you… and it certainly sounds like Tiffany is a real special friend.

    You know what I am like with vacation snaps, so I am already sitting on the edge of my seat in anticipation of seeing your show! I have even ordered the salted popcorn and soda in readiness!!!

    Luv ya loads!!!!

    Graham xxoo

  • 1. I agree. I was fortunate to have someone with me who actually spoke spanish. Thank goodness.

    2. Yeah? What is up with this? And moments later they take the card back from you and put it in the garbage. I was standing there SMH saying WTF. Most people didn’t know about it. Good thing I read your blog and did some side research. There were a bunch of Europeans in front of me. They had pounds in their hand. So the female said $50 US. He pulls out 50 Pounds. And I thought to myself if she was smart and a crook she would take it and keep it moving. Easy 50 bucks for her. luckily for them and very fortunate that she was honest they found some US currency.

    3. Can’t argue there. I purchased that insurance. I thought 24 hours before the trip that I would cancel. I should have actually but then I wouldn’t have great pictures to show for it. (Please see my last two Wordless Wednesday posts – more to come too).

    4. LOL… I’m already dark but I war my 85 and still caught a few rays to increase my dark complexion.

    5. Uggg… Sounds awful…

    6. What the… won’t ask.

    7. Yeah… What is up with their pricing? And you can’t purchase stuff like underwear anywhere on the island. You ask people where they got their clothes from and they try to sell you some tourist logo fixed shirt. I don’t want that… Just a plain white T please… But no, can’t get that.

    8. I’ve never seen such a thing. That was very interesting. I took a trip on a boat and the moment we hit the sand they were up in our face begging. We were then told by our guide that they are sent out there by their parents to do that. No one goes hungry on the island its just another revenue stream for the family. I couldn’t believe it. I think that is worse than the homeless in the city. But who am I to pass judgment?

    9. … or most places on the island.

    10. I have to see this…

    Bonus… The last day it stormed so hard… I couldn’t believe it. It would not stop for hours. But it also did that at night as well. Which wasn’t so bad seeing that I was already in my room.

    So your family/friends made the trip for you. I feel you there. You had a far better time than I did.

  • Meleah

    Graham:
    “will provide dinner party anicdotes for the next 10 years”
    Thats for sure!
    All of the vacation pictures are in flickr!
    Have fun looking at them.
    cant wait to read your comments on the photos!!!

    Urban:
    Never Again Dood.
    Never Again!
    xxoo
    xxoo

  • Well for me it does not matter what is the place, what matter most is who you are with. Thanks for posting.

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