All Back Home: Traveler's Wrap up
After a few days in the Bahamas, I can tell you this: I would certainly consdier returning to Freeport, I would rather never set foot on Nassau again, and the Great Stirrup Cay is about as close to vacationing inside a snow-globe as you can get. In all, it was a great trip.
An Introduction to cruising
Our original intention was to introduce Gaia to cruising with sort of a light-version of the longer cruises Jenifer and I have been on in the past. This worked fantastically. She had a taster cruise, and seems to, at least at this report, have a flavor for it. She even got to try Snorkeling for the first time and she had a great time of it in a nice, family friendly and relatively safe environment that wasn’t a totally artificial penned in reef. Last night, she wistfully said to me, “Oh, I wish I was snorkeling right now.” And I told her I agreed.
I don’t, in spite of the tone in most of my previous entries, especially loathe the Bahamas. And for the most part, I’d count the Bahamas in general as in the same vein as I counted the cruise in general: An introduction to the Caribbean. Certainly there are places that are nicer. Certainly there are places that are sketchier. As Jeni said in Nassau: “At least we didn’t see a bag of human heads floating anywhere.”
So there’s that. I’m looking at you, Belize.
Family Time. A family vacation.
It is a lot of work to take your family on vacation. A lot of work. Cruising stacks a lot of that work up on the front and back, allowing you to spend most of the time in-between together.
That’s how we approach it anyway. My family and I got to spend time together, doing things we love. Watching shows. Watching Gaia grow and learn. Showing her off to random strangers from all over the world. Defending our Sexy-legs titles.
Gaia has had special (although short) friendships with people from all over the world. Jenifer is amazing at getting to know and showing appreciation for the crusie workers who help us find that family time together. I carry heavy stuff around and freak out and wreck vacation like it was Christmas. This is what we do together. I think it works.
There is no better vacation for family togetherness. I would do it all again. Again. and Again. Maybe without the freak out part. I’m working on that, though.
What didn’t Work:
Miami International Airport:
The Free Wifi in Tapma was a blessing. So were the abundant charge stations and the friendly staff who helped us get good seats together so long as we were patient and kind with them. If your airport isn't making free wifi available, you're not really a public airport.
The Miami airport seems to be full of liars and shouters. And they took turns plying their respective trades, sometimes both at once. Also, I get that the airport is lit to make you feel like you’re in a Caribbean ocean. But the overall effect is to make me feel like I’m underwater and can’t breathe. Someone should have beta tested that.
Byword Dropbox Sync
For as fantastic as it is to have an iPad and the bluetooth keyboard to write on via my favorite software Byword, the Dropbox integration wasn’t so keen in a long-term disconnected environment.
I keep Byword for the iPad synched with Dropbox because I do not get nor do I like the iCloud syncing. The problem is, the way Byword handles new flies in offline mode. It won’t let you rename files when you don’t have a network connection. This makes for quite a bit of annoying file management when I get home. (Was the “Day 2” file named “Untitled One”, “Untiled Two”, “Untlitled One (1)” or "Untitled?)
I ended up writing in Byword, but keeping master copies of the documents in Nocs so I could give them proper filenames.
Not having a computer was freeing and nice. But the iPad doesn’t really meat my backup and redundancy data protection needs without packing a PC or having online access to some degree.
Traveling without Passports:
You don’t need a Passport to go to the Bahamas. But that’s about the only place you can go from the United States these days without one. But without them, you get a lot of hairy eyeballs from people who don’t want to recognize your shitty black and white unofficial looking birth certificate from asshole county Wisconsin.
Back on the Vacation Train.
I have to tell you, I was so happy to get home. And the great apple tree in our backyard was still flowering when we walked out of the garage. I was so happy I hugged it.
We’re already looking at the next adventure.
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