Tuesday April 1, 2008

Neither JewelrySlut nor I slept very well Monday night. The bed wasn’t exactly comfortable, nor did we have sufficient pillowage (nor, for that matter, did we have pillowcases on the lacking pillowage we were afforded). Of course, none of this stopped Shmuppie from snoring the night away.

While we’re still in the room, let’s discuss it.

As I may have stated, my initial thoughts of this trip would be that it was going to compare to a cruise; albeit a cruise on an incredibly enormous and non-moving ship. But, it had a cruise feeling; meals and entertainment included, you weren’t able to go anywhere. The room even had a cruise cabin-like feel.

You came in the door into a narrow hallway. A 3-door closet lined the right wall. It was large and had a lot of hangers. This came in handy throughout the week as w were in a continual state of wet and needed somewhere and somehow to hang drying clothes. Beyond the closets was the centerpiece of the room. Not the bed, not the bathroom; the bar. There was a tiny alcove with a little dorm fridge. In it were a few beers (Brahma Beer for those wondering. Brahman, we concluded is the PBR of the DR. If it was VERY cold when you drank it, it was acceptable), a few sodas, some club soda, some tonic water, and a gallon jug of distilled water (more on that). There was a shelf with an ice bucket and the ever-present plastic cups. Above the shelf was Nirvana. A glass case that resembled a medicine chest held the booze. There were 4 inverted bottles (rum, vodka, brandy and gin) on those shot-dispensing pour thingies. You walked over, lifted the tab and a shot’s worth of booze came out. This was all in your paid admission price. Sweet.

To the left of the closet was the bathroom. It was strangely small. The door, when opened, hit the toilet. There was a single sink with not quite enough vanity room. A good deal of the space was taken up by the aforementioned jug of water. See, you can’t drink the tap water at the hotel. It’s got amoebas and bugs in it. We told Shmuppie right off the bat that if she drank faucet water she’d basically die. Shockingly, we only had to tell her once.

The shower was narrow and coffin-like. It had an evil and hard to control shower head. The shower was strange and being in there was like being sealed away in a water park from hell.

Back out in the room, you had the standards along the right wall; a luggage table, a dresser (with TV showing 100+ channels of American shows dubbed into Spanish), a small table and chairs. Our first-floor room had sliding glass doors opening to a small patio which had a drying rack. The beds took up the left side. When we arrived, there were 2 double beds, but they were pushed together to make a pseudo-king bed. I pulled them apart and made them into separate beds. Shmuppie is a violent sleeper and we wanted no part of being near her.

So, back to Tuesday. I started waking up at about 5:00. It’s what I do. I must have drifted back to sleep because at 8:00, JewelrySlut and I woke up, looked at each other and said “Rain”. It was raining. It was raining the rain that only rains in the tropics. Buckets of water were falling from the sky. And, it was loud. It was doubly loud because, the buildings the rooms are in are open to the outside. There are no doors to the buildings; you just kinda walk in to the hallway. Since we were in the 3rd room in from the outside, we had rain noise coming in from all sides.

We got dressed for breakfast, grabbed the umbrella, and started our march to the main building. The rain had stopped enough to make a run for it and not get 100% soaked. At dinner the night before, we had noticed that you could eat out on the terrace. We grabbed a table and I started drinking coffee straight from the giant urn. JewelrySlut and Shmuppie went inside to take in the feast. Breakfast was out on parade.

Your choices were:
Freshly made donuts
Odd little fried bread slices
Pancakes
Baked beans (ever Euro-conscious)
Cauliflower
Mashed potatoes (What the fuck to Euro’s eat???)
Enough bacon to fill a kid’s wagon
More Sausages of Pig (A different pig form the hot dogs the day before apparently)
“Salami” in red sauce. (I had some and it was tasty)
An omelet station
Scrambled eggs (or as Shmuppie calls them “spoiled eggs”)
Muffins
Croissants
Pastries
Down the middle of the room were cold items:
A full salad bar (Again…what the hell?)
Mixed cheeses and cold cuts (more salami, ham, odd paste-like meat)
Yogurts (plain and with fruit and nuts and shit mixed in)
Jell-O
Assorted fruits

I also left off the smoothie stand and the ever-present vat or porridge.

I am undoubtedly leaving a lot off. There was a lot of food.

We ate. It rained. It kept raining. It rained some more. Things looked bleak. We went back to the room to change into bathing suite. Why? Because we’re stupid. It kept raining. At 10:00, the kid’s club allegedly opened and Shmuppie was ready to go. This was bad. By open, they tossed some puzzled and Connect Four on a table and put SpongeBob on the TV. Since neither JewelrySlut nor I wanted any part of this, we ended up ruining Shmuppie’s day. We made her leave. I think by now the rain had slowed enough to avoid a thorough soaking as we walked around.

By Noon-ish, the rain stopped and we were able to get chairs under a palm umbrella by the pool. Shmuppie swam and JewelrySlut and I drank. Heavily. Shmuppie was very upset with life and only rum could make me feel better. We spent the afternoon dodging rain showers by the pool. I took the bait when it was time to play water polo in one of the pools. I forgot that I am not 17. I had to lie on the pool deck to stretch my back after I wrenched the shit out of it. But, my team won. Woohoo!

Eventually, we headed back to the room for a nap.

We woke up for dinner. It was raining. We went to dinner and I was still mostly asleep, in pain and somewhat drunk. I didn’t eat much. Which was too bad because it seemed to be island night or something. What I did have was very good. They were hacking apart a suckling pig and had cooked up a few huge groupers. Like the night before, I rallied after some of the utterly inoffensive wine (self-serve form a tap) and dessert.

We went to the Happy Fun Time Showtime Theater, and Shmuppie danced on the stage with the other kids. We endured “Peeng Pong” lady again, and settled in for Tropicale night.

Wow.

They had on big feather hats (like you’d see in Vegas). It was a spectacle for the senses. It also was pouring. Rain was coming into the theater in sheets. The weather had been absurd all day and was going out with a bang.

At about 10, we decided to call it a night. I picked Shmuppie up and we made a run for it. We ran to the wrong building. That was nice. Then, we ran to ours and passed out from exhaustion; wet and cold.

We went to bed hoping for sun and for Shmuppie’s mood to improve.

We still had no pillows.

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