Wednesday, September 03, 2008

So, my trip to Curacao was amazing! I realized that not a lot of people know where Curacao is....heck, I didn't before I decided to fly there. It is a part of the Netherlands Antilles and it is considered the southern Carribean. It is part of the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao) and it is just north of South America. They say on a clear day, you can see Venezuela from where we were, but we never saw it. Even though it was perfect weather every day. I kept thinking it was going to be cloudy at least with all the storms out there, but it never was at our resort.

So, pretty much by day, we spent the day on the beach/at the pool and by night, went to the bars and danced! We went to Mambo Beach both Sunday night and Monday night. Sunday was crazy (all the locals were there-Monday, they weren't). I met a lot more of Dustin's friends from the ship. Somehow a dance contest broke out in the corner of this awesome bar on the beach. So, basically a bunch of Navy guys are going back and forth with a bunch of local 19 year olds Drumline/Bring it ON style, back and forth in the middle of this circle. It was hilarious. At times, I thought it was going to start fights, so I would step in and dance with Tim, but it never became hostile at all. There was a respect factor between the two different groups and it was just great entertainment. You have to see those pictures and others at

After the dance contest, Dustin and I danced a lot and that was so much fun and we sweated our ***** off! Then, we decided we would get a burger and a hot dog from a stand inside this beach bar. BAD IDEA....can't even explain the consisitency of my burger but it was so gross. I wasn't hungry after that though. We were able to ride the Navy's taxi back to the ship and then they ended up taking us back to the Marriot for free also. We were able to hitch rides with these taxis to save us a bunch of money in taxi fare, so that was cool!

The next night, we went back to the same place, but a different beach bar called Hemingways which was very good. It was part of the resort Lions Dive and I would love to stay there if we ever went back. It is right where everything is happening instead of our resort (although nice, nothing is around it). Anyway, this is where the wetting down was. What, you ask? So, a navy tradition is when an officer gets a pay increase promotion, he has a free happy hour in the amount of his monthly pay raise! So, basically we had free drinks and free appetizers for 3 hours at this bar with a lot of the officers from the ship, including the XO and CO (Captain) of the ship. It was a lot of fun; I talked to the Captain a lot about our love for San Diego and how we all wanted to end up back there someday. Of course, there was a push up contest (and I had to join-I held my own for awhile, but coudln't cut it). Needless to say, everyone was feeling it pretty good by the end. I even somehow got the Captain to do a handstand with me (I'm not sure if that's classified information or not, but I'm sharing it!) Despite the conversation, I don't think I quite convinced him enough that Dustin should be able to spend his last night with me instead of reporting to the ship at midnight on Tuesday, but I did try!

On Tuesday morning, we were a little slow moving, but we went back to one of our favorite places, the pool bar/restaurant and we sat on the little stools in the water and ate some big burgers! Then, we snorkeled a bit (the water was so clear and there were a million fish just swimming right by us), and hung out in the pool while discussing Dustin's future navy career and how lucky we were to be in Curacao together like this and hoping that in future deployments, I can meet him in Europe somewhere. We walked up a path to explore a bit and it was so beautiful (see pics). We ended up going back there to watch the semi-sunset blocked by some clouds. I sure miss sunsets over the ocean!

After that, we went back to the room and got ready for dinner and Dustin packed. We ended up staying at the hotel and went to Portofino for Asian Wok night, which turned out to be the best meal we had while in Curacao! It was kind of like Mongolian BBQ where you pick your meats and veggies and have them in a bowl and then they wok them up with sauces! Of course, we had a glass of wine with dinner and enjoyed our last meal together until next month!

It sucked that Dustin had to leave me at the hotel about 11:15 PM to get back to the ship. I walked him up to the taxi and hugged and kissed him and they drove off. I went back to the room and started to pack. Our resort was nice enough that I felt safe by myself, until there was a knock on the door! Who the heck? It was Dustin returning with my ID he had taken with him by accident! Oh my gosh! It was awesome to see him for another second, but he didn't want to be late back to the ship, so he had to run back to the taxi! At least I got to see him for one more second!

I fell asleep to talk about the republican national convention and woke up at 5:30 to leave for the airport. I called the front desk for a taxi and she said, "for two?" I said, "no, just one" and then when I got to the taxi, he said, "By yourself?" I said, "yes" Dammit, I have to start saying "I" again instead of "we" like I'm used to! It's funny, because when I was first with Dustin, I was saying things like my, or I, but then got back to saying "we." Now, I have to switch it back.

When I got to the airport, there was a beautiful sunrise and the airport is RIGHT by the ocean. it was a beautiful ending to a beautiful place. I got into Miami at 11:00 and realized there was a flight out to Jax at 12:20 (mine was scheduled for 4:10), so I tried to rush through customs and through the HUGE miami airport to the gate and barely got on the earlier flight! My bags didn't make it though, but I am having them delivered here tonight for an extra $20. Beth picked me up from the airport after a last minute phone call and plea to many people, she got back to me the quickest, so that worked out well!

Since then, I've been putting pictures up and emailing everyone I am safe and now going to run with Amber and Stuart and she's making dinner for me! Yeah! It's sad to not have Dustin here, but I think it was perfect timing to have a visit one month after he left. Now, only 1 month to go and he will be back for awhile! I can't wait!

cabbie asking me about traveling alone? front desk for two?


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