I have been off the blogosphere for a bit as we made a whirlwind trip back to America for our 3 month reprieve. You see until you have residency here in CR, we have to leave the country every 3 months, get your passport stamped, and then you can return again. You don’t have to go to America, you just have to go. However, we have had round trip tickets the last couple of times and we decided this time would be a good time to do some Christmas shopping and to pick up Mom and Grandma and bring them home. A quick relaxing one week trip to Orlando. However, I have discounted the effect the Pura Vida life has had on us. We are used to the slow pace, the anything goes mantra that permeates this small country. Orlando is anything but that, and Orlando’s malls are the exact opposite of that, an area where we spent the vast majority of our time.
You see when we travel we now travel with a mission, shop for stuff that is to expensive or does not exist here, see some movies in english, eat at places we don’t get to eat at, and force ourselves to have some fun. What we failed to realize is that there is no relaxing that fits into the following schedule.
Day one, shop, pick up Mom and Grandma from the airport.
Day two, eat, shop, eat, shop, get home exhausted.
Day three, eat, shop, eat, shop, movie, drive, shop, eat. Get home exhausted.
Day four, eat, eat, shop, shop, drive, look for specific presents, drive, keep looking, drive, pass out from exhaustion.
Day five, drive 3 hours to West Palm Beach to visit Dorian’s potential college, take an 1 1/2 hour tour, eat, drive 3 hours home, go to a movie, maybe catch a nap during the flick in a very loud Imax theater, eat and sleep.
Day Six, last-minute shopping, all that stuff we forgot, drive like crazy to find it with minimal success. Shop, check mom and grandma into a hotel near the airport, go to dinner at Downtown Disney, a super hectic place, lose Olivia, find Olivia, get back at the house to pack about 4 hours behind schedule.
Day seven, get up early, drop off rental car, get to airport 2.5 hours early so that 9 people and 12 bags can get checked in, which is a blog in and of itself, fly 2.5 hours to CR, drive 4.5 hours back to Flamingo in the dark, open door, breathe.
Day eight, sleep, and surf, back home.
It is funny, but as soon as we hit the front door of our house, or even the street in front of our house Tracy and I both breathe a huge sigh of relief. We are home, it is familiar, it is relaxing and busy, but it is where we are now living our life. America is great, it is convenient, it is busy, bustling, big and beautiful, but it wears us out. We got a lot done, visited Dorian’s potential college Palm Beach Atlantic, bought a lot of Christmas Presents, sent a ton of mail, lost Olivia at Downtown Disney, and found Olivia at Downtown Disney and ate at a dozen different restaurants. But I feel tense the whole time I am there, like I am not moving fast enough, like I have too many places to eat, too many things to do, too many choices to make. Once I get here my choices are the pool, the beach or stay home. It is simple, it is slow, it is nice and we like it. And as we walked in the door and realized that daddy forgot to pay the bills so our internet and phones were shut off, we smiled relaxed and said Pura Vida.