(originally published on March 25, 2013)
There is a difference between vacation and travel. Vacation is focused on getting away from something, from home, from work, from life. Travel is about going towards some place, about being immersed in wherever you are going. Our latest trip to Jamaica was more about being there than about being away from our lives. I tried to explain that to people when we returned home, but most people just wanted to talk about the weather. Bostonians are obsessed with weather.
So, Juniper Disco readers, I am counting on you to get it. To get that I didn't just go on vacation. That I traveled to a place I love deeply. That fascinates me to no end. And that fills my heart with joy.
The water and beaches in West Jamaica are just gorgeous. That color is like nothing else in the world. You know how regimented I need to be when I fly so I don't freak out (including not looking outside)? I was craning my neck to see out the window during our entire leg from Orlando to Jamaica because this color was everywhere below us (That and Cuba. Cuba!) I had entered the magical zone where all my anxieties and hang-ups disappeared.
We are decidedly pool people. I know that seems at odds with my love of the ocean. I can walk up and down the beach all day long but I really like to relax by the pool. This is our view of the swim-up bar.
And what came to be our spot for most of the week plus.
This was our third trip to Couples Negril and a number of people -- both fellow resorters and staff members -- recognized us from our past trips. One person even told me they saw my video! Here we are with some of the new friends we made this time around. Such great people!
We also took a couple of trips to the cliffs to enjoy the sunset. At some point in my life, we will stay in one of those huts at the Rockhouse Hotel. The sound of the ocean lapping right outside, jumping off the cliffs into the water, and watching the sunset every night seems like heaven!
This papaya drink disappeared in about 30 seconds.
There's that color again (at Xtabi)!
We chilled in the beach chairs at our resort with champagne, listening to a live saxophonist while the sun set over Bloody Bay. They really do treat you like royalty at Couples!
They also feed you like kings and queens! The beach party is one of my favorite nights. And they do this every week. Incredible. (Look at that sky!)
We also made friends with the locals. There is something about Jamaicans that just puts me completely at ease. I think it's their energy. The Mr. thinks it's the thin film of smoke that is present all over the island. Either way, I find myself syncing with their completely relaxed vibe. Yeah, mon.
We now have an annual tradition of visiting the original Office of Nature for the freshest and tastiest lobster ever!
The grounds of our resort are lush and tropical. Birds are singing all day long. It is what I miss most when we leave here and return to the city.
That and these birds.
We spa'd this time (the Mr.'s first spa experience ever.) The spa is enclosed but open enough that I could hear the birds singing and the ocean lapping at the shore while I laid in my peppermint sea twist wrap.
And we listened to the Silver Birds play three times while we were there. So fun and energetic -- it is amazing what they do!
And then all too soon, it was time to leave. I had to put closed-toe shoes back on. Which matched the chairs. Sigh.
Soon come ... my annual feasting Jamaican-style post. And a play-by-play ride along with the One Love Bus Bar Crawl on my birthday! Irie, friends!