Our flight down left at 8:40 am, with a layover in Charlotte, NC. While we were waiting for that flight, they announced that they were offering first-class upgrades for $150. Joe and I looked at each other and quickly agreed to upgrade. Neither of us had ever flown first class before and after being mushed into the seats on the previous flight, first class seemed like a great idea. And it was. It was much more comfortable and less claustrophobic. We actually sat in the first row, on the left. We had both bought the 11th Wheel of Time book the night before and I read that on the plane (on a side note: even though I read the book for awhile everyday that we were there, I still didn’t finish it till the night we got home…long book).
Once we arrived in Jamaica we had to go through immigration and customs. All that went without any problems and we didn’t have to wait in too long of lines. Then we proceeded to the Couples lounge. We were only there a few minutes before the bus was ready to take us to the resort. The bus ride was about an hour and a half. There are lots of poor sections in Jamaica (and a lot of goats tied along the road). Our driver liked to go fast and tailgate, which was nervewracking. Once we finally made it to the resort, they brought us cool towels and champagne in the lobby. They brought our luggage to our room, which was on the second of three floors. The room was nice and the air conditioner worked well.
We spent most of our days relaxing, sleeping, or eating. I’ve never been on a vacation like it. All meals and drinks were included and so were some of the excursions. We only went on two: the glass bottom boat trip and the catamaran cruise. The water was so wonderful. It was as warm as bath water and had very gentle small waves. So much different from the beaches I’ve been to. We spent a lot of time in the ocean with our floats (foam rafts). The pool was warm as well, but we were only in it a few times. We read on the beach, laying on chairs under a tree. We both ended up sunburned after our first afternoon on the beach. I wasn’t badly burned…just strange stripes down the outside of my arms. Joe was worse.
The food there was very good. For breakfast you could go to the buffet or have a continental breakfast delivered to your room. We had it delivered a few days and went to the buffet the others. For lunch they had another buffet or you could eat at the beach grill. We ate at the beach grill most days. The jerk chicken was so good. Dinner had more options. There was either a buffet or a la carte, plus an italian restaurant (which during other times was the beach grill), and the very fancy restaurant. Most of the nights we ate at the buffet/a la carte place. We ate at the fancy restaurant the night after the wedding. The food was good, but I actually preferred the other place better. On the night we were married, we had a private dinner on the beach with our own waitress. It was very good, especially the pumpkin and roasted pepper soup. I didn’t really drink much alcohol while we were there because of my medications, but there were so many choices. One thing I do wish is that they had Coke instead of Pepsi.
On our wedding day, we woke up to rain. It had been raining since the night before. I was pretty depressed about that. But it cleared up about an hour before the wedding so we were able to get married on the beach like we wanted. We ate breakfast in our room and hung out there until lunchtime, when we went to the buffet. After lunch we went to the beach for a few hours until we had to go back and get ready. The wedding consultant came and got us 5 minutes before 2. The actual wedding was a bit of a blur. I remember that I kept looking down from Joe’s eyes to watch a little bug that was crawling around on his microphone. It was over fast and we were taken to the gazebo for cake and champagne, after we signed the marriage license. After we were done, it was time to walk around the grounds for the photos and video. The ground was a bit muddy and the sand was wet, so my poor white ballet slippers got all dirty. And we were HOT. We were glad to go back up our room afterwards. We went back down to the beach again until our private dinner.
It rained all of the last day we were there and most of the second to last day. We were ready to come home by the time we had to leave. It was a great vacation though and it was so nice not to have to worry about anything (once the wedding was over anyway). I gained back all the weight I had lost though!
Our trip home went well and we upgraded to first class again for the first flight (second flight was just a commuter plane). My parents met us at the airport. Our cats were glad to see us and to go back home (they had stayed at my parents’). They wouldn’t leave us alone the next day.