I knew the trip was going to be stellar when a) my DC pilot let out a ginormous yawn while boarding the 70-ton fuel-laden tin can he would command for the next two hours, and b) a wife could not convince her incredulous husband that you could not use your cell phone on dat der plane. Awesome.
I left for the airport at 4:30 IN THE AM MORNING and at that very moment texted that fact to as many people as I could (you will suffer with me!) I was not entirely excited until I reached the gate at Coca-Cola/Hades International Airport (known in kinder, gentler circles as Atlanta-Hartsfield), and after being told I could not in fact purchase an alcoholic beverage at 7:40 am (commies) to help me through another child screaming "We're going down!" on takeoff, I saw this:
Ah, delicious Delta neon. (Let the record show that I'm pretty sure the blurry text is some Jedi mind trick about voting for Taylor Hicks.)
I met my sister (aka Sugar Mama) in the double wide (aka the Bahamas International Airport) and found her surprisingly lucid for a woman I suspected had been doped up for the prior 24-36 hours (her flying phobia rivals my completely rational fear of being forced to play softball).
After what seemed a four-hour and four-quart-of-sweat taxi ride from the double wide, we reached what can only be described as the compound:
Yeah, that's right. That's the Vader March you have playing in your head right now.
This place is nothing short of a monstrosity – had joints like this existed in the 50s folks across middle America would not have felt the need to build their own damn Dharma shelters. Picture a Vegas/Dutch Wonderland hybrid on the beach, where you can win big money, eat and imbibe until you pass out or begin dancing in the street, and MAKE OUT in the ocean/at the quarter slots/by the Predator Lagoon WELL PAST THE AGE AT WHICH IT’S PRETTY.
Debauchery and excess were in full effect.
There were hordes of drunk 17-year-olds on the prowl, which of course made me caution my sister repeatedly not to get into any cars with the Dutch ones. It is apparently also a good time for some women to flash their bare breasts to the caged 100-pound grouper as it stares longingly from behind the viewing tunnel glass. I wanted to make out with her boyfriend for the disgusted look he shot her while she cackled and hoisted her mammories back into place. Ugh.
And so it was for us. Well, a little bit of decadence, at least.
I fulfilled my role as pasty rebel with a tanning cause by wearing only a slight coating of SPF 4. Give a girl a bathing suit that finally fits her curves, let her lose a few pounds, and supply her a pink-cased Nano, and before you know it she's shaking it in her beach chair to more bad pop than should be allowed through customs.
Let her in the water, and she will attempt to demonstrate some of her newly-acquired aquatic prowess. That is until the beach guard whistles and frantically flags her down, to which she points at her chests and mouths a baffled and cliched "me?!?" while looking around to find that SHE IS THE ONLY HUMAN IN THE WATER.
(Insert crickets from the beach.)
And of course! Why then wouldn't said beach guard make a motion to illustrate "THIS big, asshat," which my Fodors failed to list as the literal translation of "Large barracuda stalking Jersey girl with ample back"?
I drank and I conched and I consumed a record 4,609 Weight Watchers points via mainlining fried foods and anything they would agree to cover in cheese. I walked out on an incredibly bad comedy club because life is too short, not to mention the fact that the margaritas and french fries at the neighboring bar were TOO DAMN GOOD. Did I mention the margaritas?
Tipsy thoughts included, but were not nearly limited to:
I wonder if anyone has ever been impaled on these during a hurricane?Good times.
Do the dolphins eat them whole, or chew them slowly?
I thought of all of you often.
And although the trip was absolutely amazing, one belligerent cab driver, a COCKPIT ALARM screaming FIRE, RIGHT ENGINE!!!, and yet another layover at Diet Coke/Hades International later, it's good to be home.