So here is the challenge: To put together a blog entry about my Jamaican vacation, and, in a similar vein to Hell in the Pacific, or Terrible, Absolutely Terrible — make it funny.

The problem this time is that, while there were some laughs along the way, there were no major misadventures.

One of the most enjoyable parts of our trip was the ability to Get Rid of LittleMissShortPerson for a few hours each day. Beaches Boscobel offers an awesome Day Care program, so MiniMang got herself farmed out, while my wife and I did our tours or snorkeling activities.

Don’t misunderstand me here. I love LittleMissShortPerson. She’s a great baby, and — after careful unbiased analysis by Yours Truly — has the uncanny ability to out-cute any other child in existence. Even Bert and Ernie thought so!

Beaches Boscobel is the home to the Sesame Street characters while they aren’t taping new episodes. Who can really blame them? With a kick-ass long-term contract with the Children’s Television Workshop, Zoe, Elmo, Grover, Cookie Monster, Bert and Ernie, and The Count are all set for life!

While LittleMissShortPerson was safely stuffed away in daycare, my wife and I had some rare opportunities to learn the Do’s and Don’ts of Vacations:

A) Get His and Hers relaxation massages. I’d never been for a massage of any kind before, and the thought of lying nekkid on a table while some Jamaican massage therapist squeezed my butt cheeks (with my wife in the room, no less) made me a bit apprehensive, but… Oh. My. God. I should make a mental note to find a spa and take out an unlimited massage membership.

B) Swim with a dolphin. How freaking cool of an experience can you get?

C) Go on a guided snorkeling tour. If you’re more adventurous, go SCUBA (which I did in Mexico). Of course, this only applies if you are somewhere near the ocean. There is no real point in snorkeling in the Glenmore Reservoir! There is a nice reef off the coast of the Mayan Rivera as well as Jamaica. Puffer Fish are cool.

D) In Jamaica, go to Mystic Mountain and ride both the Bobsled (yes, Cool Runnings IS mostly true) and the Zip Lines. Incidentally, people in Jamaica do sometimes get a kick out of it when you mention you’re from Calgary and slip in a reference to Cool Runnings. Jamaicans are very proud of their bobsled teams (and rightly so.)

E) Go to a kid-friendly resort (assuming you have kids) with a good day care facility so you can get rid of them for a few hours each day.

A) Compare Jamaica to Canada. Canada is far colder and much less humid.

B) Watch the driving. Jamaicans are nuts on their roads. They tailgate with impunity, pass in impassible places, and, if you’re watching, scare you to death. The only place I’ve been that is more crazy is Singapore. Jamaicans also drive on the Wrong Side of the Road, so it really messes you up when the driver makes a left turn on a red!

C) Arrange off-site tours with your travel agent back home. It may seem more convenient at first, but we found it to be far more hassle. We arranged our swim with the dolphin this way, and ended up running around making phone calls to confirm and get faxes sent from Calgary AND, once we got to the site, discovered we had to pay extra for our transportation. Had we arranged the event through the resort’s tour desk, all these little things would have been taken care of for us. We arranged Mystic Mountain through the tour desk and it went off without a hitch.

The biggest misadventure occurred on the flight home when my wife opened up LitteMissShortPerson’s “SippyCup.” LittleMissShortPerson prefers a cup with a flip up straw. We had filled it with water, closed it up (sealing it) then climbed aboard the aircraft. Once we were airborne, we decided to give LittleMissShortPerson a drink. So, we flipped up the straw. Which put a fluid (water) under a layer of air sealed at sea level inside the sippy cup. The straw’s bottom was under water and the other end was exposed to air at 12,000 feet above sea level. The effect had to be seen to be believed. The resulting fountain went about two feet up and showered my wife, LittleMissShortPerson, three other passengers, and the flight attendant. Note to self: equalize pressure first.

So now, it is over, and I’m sure my customers are going to give me some odd looks when I thank them by saying, “Yah, Mon!”

Steven Britton Fun Stuff, Home Stuff, Interest, My Stuff, Play Stuff

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