We’re baaaaack! Yep, our annual summer trek to Mexico officially came to an end at 12:40 pm on Saturday; that’s when we boarded the bus to head back to the airport with another 40 or so Canadians, all of us worn out, tired and weary from a week (or in our case, two weeks) of non-stop eating, drinking, laying around, boogie boarding, eating & drinking some more, more laying around, frolicking in the ocean, pool time, cocktail hours, etc. all in 33 degree sun (“That’s 35 degrees in the shade” as Paula would say!) that – in our case at least – forced us to sweat out most of the caloric intakes from the fortnight.
All in all it was a
great awesome trip, and I can honestly say that we both came home totally rested and relaxed, something that we pondered about during both the bus ride back, and then the 3 hour wait (due to an extremely efficient check in) at the airport. We wondered why this trip seemed more relaxing than the others we’ve had, and all in all we figured that besides a bunch of unique little things/experiences that were extra fun, (like hooking up with our friend Erin for a couple of days, or the worlds best wood fire oven pizza that we ate in P.V.) the success of our holiday all really came down to two key factors: First, we knew the resort we were going to and therefore had no unexpected surprises when we got there (not like last year); and secondly, we were away for two weeks, not one, and that made a world of difference to us in so many ways. Let me briefly explain:
By going to a resort where we knew what to expect eliminated 99% of the “What?” and “Huh? Are you kidding me?” factors, making it easy to slip back into familiar routines; you know, like knowing where to find that desperately needed cold beer (with lime please!) or a quick burger and fries at 4pm when the post-lunch munchies suddenly appeared. But it was really the additional week that made all the difference, mostly because the “How-many-days-do-we-have-left?” countdown was pretty much non-existent – On the first Thursday when most people were bemoaning that they only had two days left, and had to make sure they still had time to (a) hit such and such restaurant or (b) make it out to Bucerias one more time, Paula and I just calmly sipped our beers knowing we actually had 9 more days to achieve our various holiday objectives… and because of that, it was always awesome and totally stress free.
All in all things went really well, but – true to form with any holiday – there were a few hiccups; our friend who joined us wasn’t quite prepared for the hot weather, so he spent a lot of his time trying to stay cool in his A/C room, and didn’t enjoy himself as much as we’d hoped he would. As always, there were a few noisy rednecks in the adult pool (A fresh crop each Saturday! Woo Hoo!) whose base belief of what being an adult means is based on age, not behaviour or volume – these are the few rotten (And Canadian – say it isn’t so!) apples whose smoking in the pool, filling empty cups with cigarette butts, swearing out loud and screaming redneck sayings for all to hear (Git me another round of tequila! I’m gonna git me my moneys worth in one day!) which caused us to move around and seek out a quieter, more sophisticated environment. We usually found it amongst the pools housing 3 & 4 year olds with their floaty toys, who proved to be much better company; we knew they had (a) better manners, (b) didn’t smoke, and (c) probably weren’t peeing in the pool near as much as the drunken buffoons we were escaping. The kids pool was actually pretty relaxing – mostly due to the lack of kids, being low season and all.
But the main benefit of having that extra week away was that Paula and I got to reconnect with not only each other, but to our life goals. I was re-reading one of the most influential lifestyle books I’ve ever read, (Your Money or Your Life) one that has truly influenced my financial thinking and global view, and it reminded me of our plans and dreams, and encouraged us through discussion to discuss, and feel empowered by the frugal, simple lifestyle we’ve chosen; a life in place of one rife with materialism, stuff and all of the debt and financial stress that accompanies such things. In looking at our goals, we even decided to cut out a planned “week away” this summer in favour of applying that money to paying down our mortgage, all so we can be debt free even sooner. And I think that such clarity of thought and decision making came from having that extra time to relax, reflect and just be… all whilst listening to the crashing waves of the Pacific, whilst lying under palapas, drinking ice cold beers… with limes, of course!
So now we are “Home Sweet Home”, only it’s better – better because we are re-charged, re-focused and have our eyes squarely on the prize, and a plan to achieve it sooner than later. And that’s why I really recommend a two week vacation down in Puerto Vallarta (actually just north, in Bucerias) at the Royal Decameron to anyone, especially in June or September; being low season it’s ridiculously cheap, (Our total cost was less than $100 pp / per day for all-inclusive and air) and if it gets a bit too warm for you, don’t forget they have A/C rooms, lots of cold water, even more cold beer and cocktails, lots of food, and 5 pools AND the Pacific Ocean for you to go and cool off in – Not too Shabby! Now just imagine two weeks of all of this, then coming home to a clear head, and clarity to help guide the next 12 months of your life… As Master Card would say: It’s Priceless. And that feeling my friend, is the sign of a truly great holiday.
Okay, that’s enough of that. It’s really good to be home, and I’m ready to tackle our next adventure… the final stretch of becoming Debt-Free. Thanks again for reading, I really appreciate it, and promise that there’s lots of good stuff to come soon!