we travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us

Travel Throwback Thursday: Akumal, México

July 31, 2014

In anticipation for my week-long beach vacay in Turks & Caicos (leaving Saturday!), I thought it would be fun to do a little Travel Throwback Thursday (maybe a repeating trend while I get my travel page fattened up!) on one of my favorite beachy vacays: Akumal, Mexico.

We (my three girlfriends and I) went in October 2011 - over Columbus Day weekend. We got a living social deal and it worked out to $90 for each of us for THREE NIGHTS stay in a BEAUTIFUL condo, right on the water, in México! Those deals are no joke!!

We flew into Cancun, rented a car and drove about an hour to get to Akumal. It was pretty painless. One caveat though, and I'm sure if you've ever rented a car you know this, but ESPECIALLY if you are traveling just females, make sure you make note of any problems with the car beforehand. They basically tried to tell us we had to pay for four new tires when we turned the car in because one tire was flat. I was like, NO. Put air in it! But the rental place is not attached to the airport, it's down a dirt road and you have to take a shuttle there, so you could be screwed getting back to the airport if they really decide to be jerks.

It was pretty easy to check in, and we also got a day-trip to some "eco-adventures" thing. I've gone ziplining in Costa Rica and Panama, I've done the rapelling thing and all sorts of stuff, so I think in retrospect I didn't need to do this tour. I should've just stayed on the beach all day. The other day we did go snorkeling (I got seasick), then hung out on the beach all day.

The town was ABANDONED because it was October, and October is low-season for Mexico (everyone from up north wants to escape the cold winters!). We went to "our" restaurant - La Buena Vida (The Good Life) and ordered guac every day. YUMMMMM.

It was just a really nice, relaxing long weekend getaway with girlfriends and I'd love to go back! Now, some pics!

 the view from our back patio!! unreal!!

 getting dragged over the rocks. -_-
 a view from inside our condo. there were two bedrooms - one with two twin bed, other with a king.

 back patio
 "our" restaurant. blurry, but the floor is sand, and swings for seats!
 nom nom nom get in my belly!!

Have you ever been to México? I really want to go to Cabo!!!

xox, kimbo

Preparing to Leave the Country

July 29, 2014

So, I'm heading out on Saturday morning (my first flight leaves at 7:20am. WAHHH) to Turks & Caicos. Every year my sister and friend Steph and I (and sometimes others) go on a trip that centers around August 4. The past trips have been London, Ireland, and (last year) Iceland. For my 30th birthday -- which is next year -- I want to go on an African Safari! #bucketlist. So, the idea was that this year we would stick close to home. I saw on TripAdvisor that they did an article on the top 10 beaches in the WORLD, and Turks and Caicos was on the list!

I didn't even know where Turks and Caicos was before I started researching this trip. Turns out, it's right there in the Carribbean.

So, what started out as a sticking-close-to-home-to-save-money trip, has basically turned into possibly the most expensive of all the trips we've taken!! I can't believe it. But, t&c is pretty abandoned, in terms of, it hasn't been overrun with tourism yet (win!). We got an oceanfront room, so I'm veryy excited!!

But, before I go on a big trip I have a few things that I ALWAYS do, no matter how much I try to resist.

#1. ONLINE SHOP like crazy

I cannot seem to stop myself from buying everything that I think I might actually possibly maybe need/use.

This time, I bought a Lo & Sons bag. The MOST expensive bag I have ever bought, and I am REALLY hoping that it lives up to the hype. And by hype, I mean my own research that I did about it. The biggest perks of it are the strap on the back that lets it easily be attached to your rolly luggage + all the pockets!

I also went on an old navy shopping binge. I got enough clothes to wear something new every day. Soooo I might have gone overboard.

Victoria Secret bathing suits. Ahhh. Unfortunately the bottoms are too small, (i think?) . . . it's hard to tell with bathing suits bc I feel like if you get a size that feels good, when it gets wet, it falls off, and if you get it a little smaller then you're like, why is my fat being squeezed out of me.

#2. Get my nails did!
Haven't done this yet - I think I'm gonna go Friday and get NEON EVERYTHING!!

#3. Pack the night before or the day of (depending on flight time). 

I really don't understand these people who are packed like a week before they leave. What if you need the stuff you've packed? I'm actually a pretty good packer although I ALWAYS bring one or two things that I NEVER wear. I'm gonna try to beat that this year.

#4. Charge all the things. 

Cameras, iPad, eReaders, phone, portable battery stick. Nothing worse than your charge dying, ESPECIALLY on the cameras.

#5. Obsess over TripAdvisor

If you travel and don't use TripAdvisor, YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG. Seriously. That is the best wesbite/app of all time! Unfortunately, I am always really bad about actually writing my own reviews, but it is absolutely the best resource for what to do, where to go, when to eat, etc. I spent hours the other night looking at people's photos from the resort we're staying at!!

BONUS #6 - Panic about flying. 

You'd think with the amount of times I've flown (100s, if not 1000s), this would not longer be an issue, but no. I'm semi-excited this time because I've been working at it with my therapist so we'll see how it goes. I think I make myself out more scared than I am, and usually I go to the airport bar before the flight so it's not a HUGE issue, but still, it would be nice not to think the plane is going down every time there's turbulence.

(A hilarious post that I swear I could have written -- esp. #12 -- about what freaks out nervous flyers)

& there you have it. All the things I do to prepare for a trip! What about you??


July 4, 2014

My favorite song y'all!

I love the Fourth of July and I couldnt really put my finger on exactly why until I read Juliette's post and said she likes holidays that are about presence, not presents and I was like BINGO! that's EXACTLY it! I also LOVE St Patty's Day and it boils down to = themed dressing. What's not to love? If you missed my America nails that I posted on IG and in a previous post this week, go here.

So today I woke up and went running on my old stomping grounds. I forgot how absolutely incredible it is to go running and have an OCEAN BREEZE on you!! Whyyy cant I have that in Tallahassee??? 
Then we went the pool in my parents' "community". AKA Old people village. There are so many rules it's insane. 
it's normal to read books in the pool, right?
Then I got a pretty brutal headache so we came home and I took a nap, now we're watching fútbol, and later we're going to some breweries and then to watch fireworks, because what's more American than breweries + fireworks?? 


Comfort Zones, y'all

July 3, 2014


Today's topic is about how have you pushed yourself outside of your comfort zone in 2014. I think? Some posts I've just seen are just on what makes you uncomfortable, so I like that we have some flexibility in the topic.

Anyways, comfort zones and leaving them

I don't know why, but for some reason I ALWAYS associate comfort zone and pushing outside of it to be things to do with TRAVELING. Solely traveling. & believe me, I'm terrified of everything, and yet every time I travel I push myself to do things that are outside of my comfort zone. Even things that I DIDNT WANT TO DO and that I DID NOT ENJOY. hahah. I think it's taken me a LONG time to realize that pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone doesn't mean that you have to force yourself to do things that you don't like or don't want to do . . . but you shouldn't let your "comfort zone" keep you from doing things you DO want to do, and that once you do them you're happy you did.

What are some things that I've forced myself to do that I hated? And knew I would hate?

#1. Roller Coasters. 
this is me, but with my eyes closed. the sheer terror, i know it well.
I'm from Florida, guys. I've been to every amusement park, and I've been on EVERY roller coaster. And I fucking hate them all. Serious. When I worked at Chickfila, my boss bought us all tickets to go to Islands of Adventure (Universal Studios Part Dos) one Sunday. I went on EVERY SINGLE ROLLER COASTER . . . in the FRONT row on every one. WHYYYY. But no one can every accuse me of not TRYING new things.

Me in line for a roller coaster is a constant feeling of nervousness, sweating, hot flashes, and feeling like I'm going to puke -- for however long I'm waiting. Me ON roller coasters is closing my eyes, hanging on for dear life, and LITERALLY sweating through whatever clothes I'm wearing.

Never again.

#2 Avatar One - First roller coaster zip line - MEXICO. 
(Do you see a recurring theme?)
not me - this person looks like they're enjoying it
Again. I did not want to do this, but I like ziplining. I don't like roller coasters though. So, I risked it. Let me mention that this thing definitely did not look up to American safety standards, they told us there was one part where some people get stuck and if you do you have to reach up and pull yourself the rest of the way. (Guess who got stuck??) THEN, it finishes by going into a cave, a garbage bag (i shit you not) holds back some water, and you crash into the water. Well, they told us to put our legs a certain way so that we would not PUSH WATER into our faces at the end, but I, of course, didn't follow directions and I basically drowned myself at the end.

Okay, basically those are the only two things. But this year, especially because I have gone back to school I have a few things on my "pushing myself" list that I've done.

#1. Try out to be a representative for the Women's Law Group
No one knew me. It's like student government so I was like, there's no way I'm getting elected - it's a popularity contest. And guess what guys?? IT WAS. But you know what, I didnt win, but it didn't crush my heart. It didn't suck that bad.

#2. Try out for mock trial team -- the ONE thing I wanted to do in law school. 
This one was terrifying - because you have to try out without ever having learned the stuff that you're doing. AND GUESS WHAT - didn't make it.

#3. Try out for moot court 
(like mock trial but for appellate work)
I made it to the second (of three) rounds. AND GUESS WHAT - I didn't make it.

#4. Try out to be my writing teacher's assistant next year
She has two TAs for the whole year.
If at first you don't succeed, y'all, try, try again!!

#5. Go to my teacher's office hours
This was a big goal of mine because I never went to office hours in undergrad OR grad school and I think it's really important but I was always just scared. I didn't go AT ALL first semester and I regretted it. Spring semester I went a few times and I definitely want to keep that goal going for the next two years.

#6. Go to a weight watcher's meeting

This has legit been on my list for at least 3 years. I don't know, I just really wanted to go to an actual meeting because I felt like it would help me, but I've always been so scared. Well, at the beginning of June I finally did it and GUESS what -- not scary at all! So glad I did it!!

Welp, yeah, soo can you see a theme? One of the hardest things for me to do is put myself out there with PEOPLE. I always *say* I'm socially anxious but whenever I'm in groups of people I actually do really well. And if I learned anything this year it's that you can't always get what you want, and I am SO HAPPY THAT AT LEAST I TRIED!!! I never have to wonder, "What if??" and next year, I'll try out again :)


Guilty Pleasures

July 2, 2014

OK so it's day 2 and I almost quit this challenge.

I wish I felt comfortable that my work computer wouldn't be searched for a history (i'm 95% sure it won't be -- besides, I'm just an intern! an UNPAID intern!) because today I spent legit 4 hours at work and i did nada one thing! except talk to the other interns for 4 hours.

But, whatevs.

Important life updates:

#2. Dees nails doe
AKA my current nails.
[one of my FB friends posted that liberals celebrating fourth of july is like atheists celebrating christmas -- I'm offended! I'm VERY liberal & I LOVE THE FOURTH OF JULY!!)

Ok, now, onto day 2 prompt: guilty pleasures. I'm writing this without having read any one else's link up so sorry if I'm offending you off the bat, but I don't get when people say totally innocuous things are guilty pleasures: e.g., watching reality television! reading US weekly and other celebrity tabloids! ... like, maybe I'm just a terrible person, but I DO NOT FEEL GUILTY EVEN A TINY BIT about either of those things. Nor do I feel guilty about spending all day in my pajamas, not doing household chores, not making my bed, drinking wine by myself, etc. Those, to me, are just PLEASURES. Somewhere along the line I feel like pleasures got replaced with "guilty pleasure" . . . just because something makes you feel good doesn't mean it should also make you feel guilty (#puritans).

That being said, I do have a FEW guilty pleasures:

I do feel guilty whenever I eat fast food, but I just love it too much. Chipotle, Chickfila, Wendy's, you name it!

#2. Online shopping
Only because I do it too much and spend too much money and I NEVER (literally, NEVER) send something back even if it doesn't fit because I'm

#3. LAZY

I know I just said you shouldn't feel guilty about something that gives you pleasure . . . like, laziness, but, sometimes I'm just a little too much. But I can't help it feeling lazy just feels too good.

& um, that's literally it.

What are your guilty pleasures?


Happy Canada Day, eh?

July 1, 2014

As of tomorrow at 1pm, I am OFFICIALLY going to be done with summer classes. WOOhooooo!

I've been really wanting to get back into blogging, so what better way than to join up with this blog-erryday in July. Especially since I will have a lot more time on my hands in a couple days!

So, July 1 is everyone's favorite holiday: Canada Day!! Little known fact, I LOVE Canada Day! 

When I first moved to NYC, I lived in Brooklyn and my roommate was Canadian, and all of her friends were Canadian and we went out to celebrate Canada Day at a concert in Prospect Park and then we ended up in Alphabet City, looking really classy! 
me and some canadians ... yes im drinking out of a paper bag #lowmomentinlife

Plus, I've been to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls like 3 x, so I'm basically an honorary Canadian, right??
I do NOT recommend going to Niagara Falls in Febs, jussss sayin!

But seriously, I have never met a Canadian I didn't like -- the friendliest people, and I recently learned that they're trying to acquire Turks & Caicos as their own Canadian Island and the gov't shot that down. No bueno, guys, no bueno.

But here's some questions that I'm too lazy to google:
- What is the government like? Are there two parties like in the US, basically liberal and conservative?
- Do Canadians really love Tim Horton's as much as the prevalence of restaurants would imply?
- How do Canadians feel about Quebecians? Does Quebec want to be its own country?
- Some (not me!) think of Canada as our dorky neighbor to the North, what do Canadians think of the US? Are we the bullying big brother???
- What colors do you wear to celebrate Canada day??


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