at the Water's Edge

Living life and learning all I can along the way!

The Start of Summer Vacation

We got home last night from a wonderful 10-day vacation.  I'm calling it "Summer Vacation" even though it isn't really summer yet, because it sure felt (and still feels!) like summer...and, "Late Spring Vacation" just doesn't have the same ring to it.  At any rate, we started out our trip with a wedding in Key West.  My brother and his new bride decided to have a destination wedding.  It's the first one I've ever been to, and it really was very nice!  We had a little trouble getting there, however.  Because we don't live in a big city, it's harder to get direct flights to anywhere, so our travel plan was a bit odd to begin with.  We flew into the St. Petersburg airport on the night of May 31st along with my dad and his girlfriend, and the plan was to fly from Tampa to Key West the next morning, and have a full day there before the wedding on Saturday, June 2nd.  Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate and the airline didn't help matters.  Our flight was scheduled to leave at 9:30am, and it's just a quick flight on a puddle jumper to get to Key West -- but it was raining that day, and as soon as we got to the gate we discovered that the flight was delayed due to weather.  A while later, the flight was delayed again.  And again.  And again.  It started out as a weather delay, then they had a hard time getting a full crew together to fly us, and then the Key West airport closed for a bit.  We waited at the airport for EIGHT hours before we finally gave up and decided to rent a car and drive ourselves down.  At that point they were talking about canceling the flight, though it wasn't fully decided; they also talked about getting a bus together, but didn't have a driver.  Enough of that.  We drove the 7ish hours from Tampa to Key West.  It would've been a nice drive, especially through the keys, if it hadn't been rainy and dark.  By the time we got to the keys it was quite late and hard to see much.  We finally made it to Key West at about 12:30am.  Everybody else was already there -- most had traveled earlier in the week.  So, we ended up missing the big dinner with everybody on Friday night, but I was just thankful we made it for the wedding!

The wedding was simple and beautiful, along the beach on the south part of Key West.  And the reception?  Hard Rock cafe!  Very fitting for the bride and groom, and we all had a great time.  But all of that was just the start of our journey.  From there, six of us (Tom and I, plus my brother and his new wife and my dad and his girlfriend) all went on a cruise through the western Caribbean.  Thankfully, most of our travel issues happened on that Tampa-to-Key West leg of the trip, and we managed to get back to Tampa and to the cruise ship with plenty of time and without a problem.  

I'll give you the overview of the cruise here, then break apart the trip in a separate post.  The cruise stopped at four ports in four different countries: Mexico, Belize, Honduras and the Cayman Islands.  We were on a Carnival cruise ship called the Legend, which had enough activities within itself to keep us busy!  Tom and I did ship-coordinated excursions in Honduras and Belize and decided to do our own thing in Cozumel and Grand Cayman.  We did not have nearly as much downtime as I expected, and consequently I didn't get any actual reading done.  I did finish my audio book -- 11-22-63: A Novel, by Stephen King.  It was interesting and different and listening to that was basically what I did in the free time that I did have.  The cruise offered lots of games, shows, comedy and activities.  We got into the trivia and other similar games and early on got on a quest to earn as many trophies, medals and other prizes as we could!  I think we did pretty well: 5 trophies, 3 medals and a bottle of champagne between all of us.  

The week went by far too quickly, and I couldn't believe that it was already time to come home!  It was a great relaxing and fun break, and we really enjoyed spending some of it with family -- both in Key West and on the cruise.  That's our kick off for summer!  I don't think we have as many travel plans this year as normal, but I'm sure the summer weekends will fill up quickly.  I hope you take the time to do something relaxing, fun or adventurous, too :)

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Hi there! My name is Dana and I live in West Michigan with my husband, Tom and our dog Copernicus. I created this space as a place to share the things I learn along this journey I call life. I work in marketing and I'm a sort of Jane of All Trades, interested in all things nature, gardening, cooking, exploring and learning new things. This blog is a conglomeration of my interests, hobbies, life and life lessons. Thanks for stopping by!